Making the Most of High School as You Prepare for College

Making the Most of High School as You Prepare for College image 1 (name IMG Making the Most of High School as You Prepare for College 1)

As a high school student, thinking about college can be both exciting and overwhelming. While college may seem far off, the sooner you begin preparing, the better. Make the most of your remaining time in high school and position yourself for a successful college application process by following these helpful tips:

  1. Focus on your grades. Admissions officers want to see that you can handle college-level coursework. Make sure you’re doing your best and getting good grades, as it is one of the most important factors in the college application process. If you’re struggling in a particular subject, don’t hesitate to ask for help.
  2. Take challenging courses. Consider taking Advanced Placement® (AP®), International Baccalaureate® (IB), and other challenging courses if your school offers them. These courses can help demonstrate your academic abilities and show that you’re willing to challenge yourself. 
  3. Get involved in extracurricular activities. Join clubs or sports teams that interest you, or volunteer for community service projects. Participation in extracurricular activities can show your leadership skills, commitment to your community, and ability to balance multiple responsibilities. 
  4. Build relationships with your teachers. Participate in class, ask for help when needed, and meet with your teachers outside class when possible. When you build strong relationships with your teachers, they have the chance to get to know you on a personal and academic level, which can help when asking for letters of recommendation.
  5. Start researching colleges. It’s never too early to start researching colleges and universities to get an idea of what you’re looking for in a school. Consider factors such as location, size, majors offered, and campus culture to narrow your choices and help you make an informed decision about where to apply.
  6. Prepare for standardized tests. Most colleges require the SAT or ACT as part of the application process. Prepare for these tests by taking a test prep course or using study materials. Remember that these tests are just one factor in the application process, so don’t stress too much about them. 
  7. Start thinking about your essay. Many colleges require you to submit a personal essay with your application. You can start brainstorming ideas and writing drafts that show who you are and what makes you unique. Keep your essay personal and authentic and have someone read it who can provide feedback. 

The key to preparing for college is to be organized, focused, and motivated. By staying on top of your coursework, getting involved in extracurricular activities, and researching colleges, you can set yourself up for success in the college application process. Remember, the earlier you start, the better.