Senior Year Time Line
Information taken from mycollegeoptions.org website.
June & July
June & July
- Continue putting in as many hours as you can and tuck away as much $$ as possible.
- Remember to set aside time for fun with family and friends. The coming school year will the busiest yet!
- Consider adding to your community service hours - this will look great on your college applications.
- Finish up your research of potential colleges, narrow down your options and plan on applying to 6 - 10 schools.
- Review your class schedule and take advantage of the opportunity to drop or add courses if necessary.
- Consider scheduling an appointment with your school's academic or college advisor to make sure that all of your graduation requirements are in order.
- Remember that college admissions officers will look at the difficulty of your coursework and your grades all the way through your senior year.
- Some people don’t have the drive or desire to attend college. And that’s totally fine. If you do not plan to enroll in a four-year college next fall, explore admission opportunities at a community, vocational, or career/technical college. There are a wealth of opportunities out there for those who want to take a different route.
- Register and prep for a re-take of college entrance exams (SAT and/or ACT) if your original scores were not on par.
- If you’re still not set on a final list, be sure to attend any local college fairs or meetings with college reps at your high school.
- If possible, find a time to schedule campus visits as this will help with final decisions. Be sure to schedule an official tour with the admissions office so that you get a complete "picture" of the school(s) you're considering.
- Your window to take the SAT or ACT is quickly closing. Both tests will be administered in October. If you need to sit for either exam, register now!
- If you haven't already done so, get started on first drafts of your college application essays.
- This is also the time to begin asking teachers for letters of recommendation.
- You know the drill – community and extracurricular involvement are important for personal and academic growth. Despite the time consuming nature of college apps, you should definitely continue your participation.
- Consider taking on a leadership role on your teams and in clubs & organizations.
- Ultimately, your college decision will rest heavily on finances. We recommend that you start with the FAFSA Forecaster site.
- College is an expensive investment. Make sure you and your parents/guardians have begun filling out the FAFSA.
- In addition, you should strongly consider completing the College Scholarship Service (CSS) Profile. This is a reputable tool sponsored by The College Board.
- Make sure you are on top of the application deadlines and requirements for the schools to which you're applying!
- If you haven't already started, it is time to begin looking for scholarship opportunities. A good place to begin is our Scholarships page.
- REMEMBER: Reputable scholarship organizations will not charge you to apply.
- Amid all the chaos that is now your life, staying organized is a must!
- Many schools early admission deadlines fall in November, with regular admission often falling in January.
- Continue looking for scholarships and make sure you and your parents/guardians are on the same page about who will contribute what amount toward your post-secondary education. You might check with your parents’ employers, church, or local civic organizations.
- Make sure that you're taking time for yourself - try to stay rested and healthy. The holidays are fast approaching!
- You've put in a lot of hard work over the past few weeks, now it's just a waiting game.
- Unless, of course, you have applications yet to finalize. Get them finished already!
- As a high school senior, it’s very easy to continually look towards the future and not focus on the present. However, don’t lose sight of your current responsibilities (scholastic and extracurricular). You need to remain in good standing academically in order to graduate and retain your college admission offer(s).
- Again, stay rested and make time for yourself, family and friends.
- Semester exams are coming up soon. Make sure that you are looking over class notes often. A good study tool can often be found in re-organizing and/or re-write your notes.
- Despite some published FAFSA deadlines, the Michigan Competitive Scholarship requires that your FAFSA be complete and submitted by March 1. Therefore, for students in the State of Michigan, the FAFSA due date is considered March 1. Make sure you're on track to meet this deadline.
- Write "thank you" notes to teachers for their recommendations. While they might not have guaranteed you a spot at your dream school, they did do you a favor.
- Are you feeling anxious and overwhelmed by the college application process? Are you nervous about leaving your home and familiar surroundings? It’s quite normal to feel uneasy with so much change headed your way. Talk to your peers, parents, and counselor about your emotions. We promise you’ll feel better (and get some sympathy to boot).
- If you’ve already received an acceptance or three, congrats! Begin making plans to visit your potential new schools and start reviewing housing options. After all, just like college in general, some dorms will be a better fit than others.
- Be sure to tell your counselor and/or advisor about the acceptance(s) and scholarship awards that you've been notified of. We like to keep track and give you some well deserved credit!
- Admissions decision letters will be rolling in. Keep your counselor/advisor in the loop.
- A campus visit (if you haven't already) might help make final decisions easier.
- Spring Break is close. Keep your eye on the prize - graduation and an exciting transition into college or career!
- Maybe it's time to start planning your graduation open house?
- Keep in mind that many schools require an enrollment and housing deposit by May 1.
- Keep checking into scholarship opportunities. Many scholarship deadlines fall way after college application deadlines.
- If you're still short of funds to pay for college, now is the time to talk with the schools you've been accepted to (or the one that you've chosen) about work study opportunities.
- You might also need to consider federal student loans or other loans. BE CAREFUL! Loans always have to be paid back and almost always with interest.
- Don’t bask in the glory of your admissions decisions for too long. Once you’ve made your final decision, start writing a “to do list” of items that require attention (housing form, orientation, registering for classes, placement tests, etc.).
- Don't forget to notify schools that you've been accepted to if you have chosen to attend elsewhere.
- You’re likely to feel a rush of different emotions - this is an exciting and stressful time. Know that emotional ups and downs are pretty normal and completely acceptable for high school seniors.
- Even if you have chosen not to enroll in a four-year college, explore admission opportunities at a community, vocational, or career/technical college. There are a wealth of opportunities out there for those who want to take a different route.
- Sure, you want to savor what could potentially be your last summer at home. However, you should give some thought to securing a job. It’s a great way to add some work experience to your resume and earn some pocket money for the upcoming year (trust us – you’ll want some)!
- You’ll need to have your final transcript sent to your chosen school.
- More importantly (or at least more fun), it’s time to start planning and prepping for college! You’ll likely have lots of forms to wade through, some with hard deadlines. Make sure you read everything carefully. After all, you don’t want to arrive on campus only to discover the dorms have already been filled.
- You should consider registering for your school’s orientation program. The events and activities provide a great transition into college life and ensure you’ll see some friendly faces around campus. And who doesn’t love playing a variety of name games? Often times, orientation is required.
- Keep working that summer job and don't spend it all on summer festivities. The majority of your summer earnings should be socked away for the unexpected items that mom & dad have always made sure were available - food, soap, shampoo, toothpaste, etc.
- Let’s face it – the vast majority of college freshman are assigned roommates. And while it’s great to have your own space, roommates do provide some built-in companionship (which can be welcome when trying to adjust to your new surroundings). You’ll likely find out who your roommate is before arriving. Make a point of reaching out and introducing yourself. You can gauge each other’s sensibilities, discuss personal habits and most importantly, decide who is bringing the mini fridge.
- Unless you plan on commuting (or being a mooch), chances are you’ll have to furnish your dorm room. While your school will obviously provide the basics (bed, dresser, etc.), there’s plenty you’ll need to bring. From laundry bags to comforters, sit down and make a list of possible items. This will save you from making multiple trips to the local Target or Wal-mart when moving day arrives.