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Oct 11, 2012

College Application Deadlines Approaching!

Becky Cooke

   Are you under the gun to get college applications completed and meet those deadlines? Organization is the key!

   If you are computer savvy, setting up a spreadsheet or calendar will give you a document to put in the colleges of choice, the application to use (Common Application or individual school’s application), the various forms that need  to be completed, and the deadlines associated with them. Checking off when things are completed will give you a sense of accomplishment and encourage your teen and you to keep going.

   Maybe a simple hard copy blank calendar is easier for you to use so it can be front and center for everyone to see at a glance. Using either system will keep you from forgetting important dates and assignments.

   The deadlines will be the major driving force. If your teen is using the Common App and seeking early decision/action, the November 1st deadline is coming quickly. Most individual college applications will also have October or November deadlines.

   Teens who are applying using regular admission deadlines still have a couple of months to gather all their information and fill out the forms. But – don’t put off until tomorrow what you can do today because you don’t know what tomorrow will bring!

   Don’t forget that the application includes additional forms that need preparation and attachment before the application packet is complete. Mom, is your teen waiting for the transcript or for you to fill out the school forms in the Common Application? This becomes number one priority for you.

   There may also be essays to write, health forms to complete, test scores to request from the College Board or ACT, letters of recommendation, and financial aid and scholarship applications. All these take time to request, complete, and return. Are you asking for financial aid? Remember to check with each college’s financial aid office for any additional forms they may want from you (do I hear a sigh?! :). Missing these deadlines may mean missing out on some money!

Some tips:

  •  Complete as many of the applications and forms as possible online. Many schools will give you a discount on the application fee. I’ve noticed that some even will waive the fee for online applications.
  •  Don’t leave blank any required question. If you don’t know how to answer, email or call the school or look at the FAQ section to see if someone else had the same question.
  • Don’t forget to pay the application fee, if one is required. Until the money is in hand, review of your teen’s application will be delayed.
  • Do persevere for this season too shall pass. The Lord is in control of the whole process and will open the doors He knows are best for your teen. You can count of Him.

-Becky Cooke

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