Schedule an Appointment with your College Counselor
- If you are scheduling an appointment with Mr. Eastlake or Ms. Mason, contact Mrs. Allenson, the Assistant to the College Counseling Office. Appointments with all other college counselors must be made with them directly.
- Update your college counselor on your summer activities and college visits.
- Review your test-taking plan and colleges to which you will apply.
Submit the following by September 15 (accessible through Family Connection or the GA website):
- Senior Self – Evaluation & Resume
- Transcript Release Form (downloadable from the website)
- Senior Parent Evaluation (remind them that they have homework too!)
Request Teachers to Write Letters of Recommendation
as early as possible in the fall of the senior
year (at least 1 month before the application deadline)
- Give the teacher the form from the college, with the top section filled out containing your name and address. If you are using the Common Application, simply give them one copy of the teacher recommendation form; they will complete it and make copies.
- If the college does not have a form, put your request for a recommendation in writing.
As a courtesy, you need to provide teachers with stamped, self-addressed #10 envelopes along with your Teacher Recommendation forms.
- Do NOT use your return address. Use the following:
Fort Washington , PA 19034
- A good way to make sure that the letter has arrived at the college is to give your teacher a pre-paid postcard addressed to you that will be sent with the letter.
Begin completing the Common Application (http://www.commonapp.org/)
- Create a new account and record your username and password in a safe place.
- Save as you complete information and print to proofread.
- Check to see which colleges require supplements.
Helpful Hint - Under “Download Forms” is a “requirements grid” that identifies application deadlines and plans, standardized test and supplement requirements and application fees.
- Be prepared to do several drafts of each essay.
- Have your essay critiqued by your college counselor or a teacher before you submit your application.
- Proofread your final essay and use spell check!
Complete All Standardized Tests
- Most seniors should be retaking the SAT I in October (deadline is September 9) or the ACT.
- Check to see if the colleges to which you will apply require Subject Test scores (and if they require scores from specific subject areas).
- Consult individual colleges’ applications to determine the last date by which you can take SAT’s, Subject Tests, or the ACT and still meet the deadlines.
- Send your scores to colleges directly from the testing agency - for free by listing four colleges when you register for the SAT or when you sit for the SAT. If you want to send your scores to more than four colleges, you must pay to send them.
Finalize the List of Colleges to which You will Apply
- Be sure to have “likelies,” “possibles,” and “reaches.”
- Determine if you have a first choice school (is ED or EA appropriate for you?). If you apply ED, you must submit the ED agreement form that is posted on the GA website to College Guidance.
- Determine if you need and then if you have “financial safeties.”
- All pink transcript request forms must be submitted to the College Counseling Office according to the published guidelines (Rolling – Due in College Guidance on September 30; Early Decision/Action - Due in College Guidance 1 month before the deadline; January 1 or later deadlines - due in College Guidance on November 30th, the Monday after Thanksgiving break). Please note: Your college counselor is available to review your application before you submit it.
Keep in mind
that you have NOT applied to a college until you have also submitted the Pink Transcript
to Mrs. Allenson)
- Applying to one “rolling” or “EA” college, and preferably a “likely,” early in the process is highly recommended. You will reduce your anxiety by having a college acceptance in the fall!
Check financial aid deadlines
Profile – an application that is required by some colleges, but not all colleges. Check https://profileonline.collegeboard.com/index.jsp to see if your colleges require this form to apply for financial aid. All deadlines for this form vary by colleges. If you are applying early and the college requires the CSS Profile, it may be due as early as November.
FAFSA (the Free Application for Federal Student Aid) – if you want to be considered for aid, this form must be completed. The first date it can be filed is January 1 of your senior year. You can find the application on-line at http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/ It should be available around Thanksgiving of your senior year. Worksheets for the FAFSA are available in College Counseling.
Continue to Investigate Colleges
- Revisit colleges you visited in the summer to see the campus in action!
- Attend meetings with the college representatives who visit GA (consult Family Connections for updated information)
- Schedule interviews with those colleges that offer them even if they are “recommended” or “optional.” Many small to medium size colleges track “interest,” and some go so far as to wait list even highly qualified candidates because they have not visited and shown interest.
If you are a prospective college athlete seeking admission to a Division I or II level (not Division III) college, register with the NCAA Clearinghouse at https://web1.ncaa.org/eligibilitycenter/common/.
Take Ownership of the College Application Process
- Complete applications yourselves. Do not allow a parent to do your work! Not only is permitting someone else to complete your applications unethical and in violation of GA’s Honor Code, it is typically transparent to college admission counselors.
- Adhere to our deadlines and procedures to minimize your stress, your parents‘ stress and your counselor’s stress!
- Communicate with your counselor so he or she can help you, but do not make your college list and your test scores a topic of conversation with your friends. Sharing lists and scores only increases YOUR stress. Save these conversations for your counselor!
How we Communicate with You
We will be sending out important announcements and reminders to your GA email account.
You are responsible for checking your GA email. We will email you individually as well as by class. Individual emails will include requests for you to come to our office ASAP to rectify something on your application, so check your email before you leave campus!