College Application Process


  • Make sure you have all applications required for college admission and financial aid. Write, phone, or use the Internet to request missing information.
  • Check on application and financial aid deadlines for the schools to which you plan to apply. They may vary and it is essential to meet all deadlines!
  • Meet with your school counselor to be sure your list includes colleges appropriate to your academic and personal record. Review your transcript and co-curricular records with your school counselor to ensure their accuracy.
  • If the colleges require recommendations, ask the appropriate people to write on your behalf. Provide recommendation forms, any special instructions and a stamped, addressed business envelope to the people writing your recommendation.
  • Plan visits to colleges and set up interviews (if you didn't get to them during the summer or if you want to return to a campus for a second time). Read bulletin boards and the college newspaper. Talk with current students and professors.


  • Attend a regional college fair to further investigate those colleges to which you will probably apply. Attend National College Fairs and the Performing and Visual Arts College Fairs if necessary.
  • Mail applications in time to reach the colleges by the deadlines. Check with your school counselor to make sure your transcript and test scores have been/will be sent to the colleges to which you are applying.
  • If you need financial aid, obtain a FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) from your guidance office. Check to see if the colleges to which you are applying require any other financial aid form. Register for the CSS Profile if required and obtain the college's own financial aid forms, if available.
  • If applying for early decision or early action, send in your application now. Also prepare applications for back-up schools. Remember, if you are accepted under the early decision option, you are expected to enroll at that college and withdraw all other applications. Submit financial aid information if requested from early decision/action candidates.
  • Have official test scores (SAT, ACT, AP, GCC Transcript) sent by the agency to colleges on your list.


  • Be sure your first quarter grades are good.
  • Continue completing applications to colleges. Make copies of all applications before mailing the applications.
  • Keep all records, test score reports and copies of applications for admission and financial aid. Do not throw anything away until at least the end of your first year in college. Having detailed records will save you time and effort should anything be lost or should you decide to apply in the future to other colleges and scholarship programs.


  • Have official test scores sent to colleges on your list if you have not done so.
  • Consult your school counselor again to review your final list of colleges. Be sure you have all bases covered. It is a good idea to make copies of everything before you drop those envelopes in the mail. If for some reason your application gets lost, you will have a back-up copy. File your last college application.
  • If you applied for early decision, you should have an answer by now. If you are accepted, follow the instructions for admitted students. If the decision is deferred until spring or you are denied, submit applications now to other colleges.


  • Keep working in your classes! Grades and courses continue to count throughout the senior year.