What can i do to start the application process as a Junior?Answered
Im a high school Junior and wondered what I could do to get a head start in the application process? Is there anything I can do before I start my Senior year that will make things easier? And if it's not too much trouble, how do I find more colleges to consider across the US? The state doesn't matter to me; I just don't know how to find more schools that I would be interested in!
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“Here is the beautiful thing about the Common App – the application opens on August 1,  for students who are looking to start college in Fall , BUT you can begin completing the general portion of the Common App any time prior to that, starting 8/1 of the prior year...” (https://www.signaturecollegecounseling.com/when-do-college-applications-open-for-fall-2021/).
This is, of course, when the universal Common Application opens (August 1) to record/submit all necessary documents for the fall admissions process. It is also necessary to consider that some colleges NOT present on the Common App list hold their own opens admissions date—some before in June and some a little while after Aug. 1. Though, you CAN prepare for the credentials necessary for the admissions date before by:
(1) preparing letter of recommendation,
(2) practice personal essay writing (many find this to be a struggle to perfect their “essays”),
-(2.1) practice supplement essay writing,
(3) prepare any SAT/ACT/AP/IB scores you wish to be viewed (I believe this cycle is test-optional as well),
(4) know what extracurriculars to include,
(5) AND prepare for financial aid through FAFSA and CSS (the latter if the school requires it for aid).
[The FAFSA opens October 1] (https://studentaid.gov/h/apply-for-aid/fafsa)
[Common App opens Aug. 1 ] (https://www.commonapp.org/)
Some key deadlines to note are Nov. 1 (most ED/EA for Ivy Leagues and Ivy+ close then). Another is Dec. 1-15 (some schools close there credentials for acceptance of “merited aid”—this is critical if you wish to apply). Yet another is Jan. 1-15 of 2022 (most regular decision apps close then). It is also important to note that some schools don’t accept an influx of applications by deadline as aforementioned, but on a rolling basis. This means they will accept any applications/credentials for admission until a set date (usually May 1 - June) when it closes.
Hope this helps a lot!! I’ve honestly made some mistakes in my application process where a deadline was missed simply because I had very little guidance through “virtual learning”. It’s certainly a different process due to these uncertain times. Best of Luck to you!!!
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