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Advice for Non-Traditional Freshman?


I have a friend who graduated from high school back in 2016. She graduated with a 3.55 GPA and had acceptances from schools such as Hofstra and Xavier. She has not attended college due to depression and financial issues. I also mention that her ECs weren't that great and her test scores were average at best. Though she attended a high school where she could take college courses, she felt that the faculty and guidance counselor weren't as supportive as she would have liked and I think it played a part in why her confidence was lowered. She is enrolled in a SAT prep course and has began to weigh her options as far as where she wants to go. She would like to major in Business Statistics or Finance with a focus in either Real Estate or Sustainability. I want to know what advice to give her as I want her to do well, and what should her first step be? Sorry for the loaded question(s), but I wanted to which direction she should take since she may be treated differently due to her status. Thanks in advance.


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The thing colleges will typically look for most commonly from students who had some kind of gap in their education is a) an explanation for why that gap occurred and b) any ways that student may have used that gap—whether that's saving money, developing a skill, being treated for an illness, etc. As long as there's information to fill that vacuum, they should look at their application in the same way they would look at any other incoming freshman. In that case, the same advice applies—work on test scores (those will matter more than high school stats will since she's a few years removed), and focus hard on the essays, because those will matter a lot.