Believe it or not, you’re almost halfway through high school. These next few weeks offer an opportunity to boost your academic record at this mid-way point. If you did well in 9th grade and are taking more challenging classes this year, a strong finish can help you continue your strong history; on the other hand, if your first year was not what you hoped for keep in mind that colleges look favorably on an upward trend.
It’s not too early to start exploring colleges, and the upcoming Colleges That Change Lives fairs are a fantastic opportunity to do that. The DC event is on May 21; check here for dates in other cities. It’s also a good time to plan ahead for junior year visits. I recommend spreading your campus tours out over the year instead of packing all your visits into spring break, which can be hectic and hard to process. And since it can be hard to find time during the year to travel, I also recommend blocking out time now even if you don’t have destinations in mind yet. Students whose high schools start after Labor Day should consider scheduling a first tour at the end of August. Most colleges will be in session, so you can arrange to sit in on classes and meet with faculty, and there will be lots of students around to give you a feel for campus culture.