Rising high school seniors have one last summer before adulthood. No matter whether the student has a job, is taking a course, or has other summer obligations, there is time both for fun AND for strengthening future plans.
Here are our six tips for summer.
Think about your interests. Think about what is important to you and why. What do you find interesting? What kinds of problems do you like to solve? Then look toward the future: What careers are related to those interests? Which campuses can serve those interests and/or help you achieve your goals? Those are the campuses you should apply to.
Immerse yourself in something. Spend your summertime productively. Read books about a subject you find interesting. Get a job. Attend a summer camp. Read high-quality newspapers or magazines. Develop a new skill or advance one you already have. Volunteer. Did I mention you should read? (Yep, three times!) Shadow someone who has a career you might enjoy. Learn in different ways!
Start a résumé. That word “résumé” may be scary. Consider it as a list of things that you’ve done during your high school years. Include activities, volunteer experiences, jobs, honors and awards, and anything else that is important about you. You will refer to this list many times as you complete your applications for admission and scholarships. You can also give this list to someone who agrees to write a letter of recommendation for you during the summer.
Prepare for your applicant’s statements. Many of our campuses want to know what you bring to the campus community. A way to begin is to think about your experiences with work, classes, volunteering, and other ways that you spend your time. What is meaningful about these experiences? What have you learned, and how have you changed? How do your experiences make you unique?
Log in to an App in a Snap webinar. Our office is providing several webinars in August to familiarize students with applying for admission. We’ll introduce you to the application, cover common trouble spots, and answer your questions. Sessions usually last 30 minutes. The webinars are free and registration is required.
Visit campuses? The best time to visit a campus is during the academic year when there are lots of students around. However, if you haven’t had the chance to tour campuses until summer, make sure to still go. Take along a parent or other adult. The campus won’t be full of activity like during the academic year, but you will still learn a lot from the visit.
Rising seniors can surely take time to have fun during the summer. Luckily, there are lots of hours in the summer so that they can focus on some productive experiences as well—which can be equally as fun.