Road Map for September: Seniors

School has barely begun but the Class of 2022 application cycle is well underway. If you haven’t been working on your Common Application or personal statement, it’s time to get started, especially if you have Early Decision or Early Action applications coming up. Most of these deadlines are in November, but some public universities have October 15 due dates.

You should also be working on college-specific essays. The first step is to identify your universe of essays. When you know what all of your questions are, you can choose your topics with an eye toward using essays for multiple schools. Pull up your college list and, for Common App schools, use their Writing Requirements Resource to see all the essays you’ll have to write for each college. Then think about things you’d like to write about that might apply to more than one question. Yes, you’ll have to make some adjustments for different word counts, but if you plan well you won’t have to start from scratch for each one.

Many of you have completed your standardized testing while others have a final test scheduled in the next few weeks. Students have had a lot of questions about the test-optional movement and what it means for them.  I’ll be answering some of these questions with my colleague Jen Dillon from AdeptPrep on September 28th. Register here for “Test-Optional Q&A for the Class of ’22.”

Meanwhile, parents should be getting ready to complete financial aid forms. The FAFSA and CSS Profile open on October 1, so get your 2020 taxes out and create your FSA ID.  You may also be interested in this article on how schools that use the CSS Profile consider home equity in their financial aid calculations. For an overview of the financial aid system (and other topics) I hope you’ll join me on September 26 for College Admissions: A Road Map for 11th and 12th Grade Students.” You can register here.