Road Map for February: Freshmen

I hope your freshman year is going well academically and that you’re able to find some non-academic activities to enjoy. The limits on our options are discouraging but still life somehow goes on. If you haven’t explored any extracurricular opportunities this year such as clubs, sports or the arts, consider making that a goal for the next few weeks. This can be a hard stretch to get through when the days are short and the weather isn’t great. Finding a new activity or resuming one that you have enjoyed in the past can I help you stay motivated and positive.

Planning for the future can also help. Think about some fun things you might be able to do in the spring and then find dates to do them. It also seems likely that this summer we’ll be able to do lots of things we haven’t been able to do over the last year. Making some plans and enjoying the anticipation of future events can make our time now feel better (even if it doesn’t actually pass more quickly.)

As you think about what kinds of activities you might pursue, check out this list of what colleges look for in high school students. You’ll notice that the first three items are academic (and note that the list was published pre-COVID, so the standardized testing landscape has changed significantly.)  You should also understand that each individual college will have its own order of these priorities, but most colleges value lots of other things in addition to your grades and test scores. The first half of high school is a time to explore your interests and figure out what you enjoy and find meaningful, so use this opportunity to reflect on what you might like to spend some time exploring in the coming months.