The holidays are almost here. It’s time to enjoy family, friends, food, and . . . the FAFSA?
If you’re a high school junior, you still have plenty of time before your FAFSA is due, so go ahead and enjoy the family, friends, and food.
If you are a senior applying for regular admission, and you haven’t yet started the application process, get started this weekend. Setting aside a few hours to work on college applications will give you a solid start, and position you to enjoy your time off from school. By doing this, you will also beat the rush of applications submitted at the last minute. Application deadlines vary, but most fall in early January.
If you have already submitted your applications, great job being proactive. If you are still putting the finishing touches on your essay, it’s a good idea to have someone proofread your work before you click submit.
Once you’ve clicked that send button, there is a strangeness to the next part of the process—perfectly timed for your holiday break. For many months, it has been go go go. Take the SAT/ACT. Figure out your safety schools, target schools, and reach schools. Visit the campuses of the colleges of interest. Fill out the FAFSA and CSS Profile. Gather your letters of recommendation, and thank those who’ve written them. Get your transcripts. Start the application process. Consider your essay topic. And submit your application through the Common App or whatever process each school requires.
Then all of a sudden, just like that, it’s submitted.
Hurry up and wait.
Suddenly there is a lull.
What occurs at this point is a real pause.
And that pause creates discomfort, doubts, emotions, and questions. Will I get in? Did I pick the right schools? Will my essay stand out?
Don’t let those questions weigh you down. I’m here to tell you, there’s nothing more to be done. Respect and appreciate the effort you put forth. Congratulate yourself on a job well done. Leave it to the schools to make their choices. And enjoy every minute of the holiday season.