How many times have you heard planning is essential to success? It is so much easier to go by the fly and just tackle each task at the last minute when you have time to focus on your plan to go to college. We have all been there; procrastination gets the best of us. I have tried desperately to finish my college essay the night before or even worse, letting deadlines pass without sending the paperwork!
I am here to tell you that you need a plan to make this dream come true. The plan is going to be your guide, step by step, on how to prepare, apply and pay for college. It’s a long road ahead. I will tell you the truth; it’s not going to be easy, but it will be worth it.
Create a plan for yourself. This plan will help you to set your dream, to organize the path to your dream and then implement each step. It’s always so daunting sees all the steps you need to take to get to college! The tip I can share is that one step at a time, will get you there.
Set time aside say every Sunday night to work on your plan.
Get organized with a binder with sections for applications, letters of recommendation, financial aid section, scholarships to apply and other sections you might need.
Deadlines are key. One of the easiest mistakes students make is missing deadlines. In college, deadlines are very important. As most opportunities are competitive, the easiest way to narrow the field of applicants is to enforce a deadline. I guess that is why the call them deadlines, if you miss it you are dead! Send applications in a month before they are due, so you are sure to be in the running to get into college or receive a scholarship.
Follow Up. One of the most valued habits that you need to develop is following through. It is incredible that you would do all the necessary steps and forget to send the application in! Or when you need a recommendation or an official transcript, and you just sit and wait for a teacher to answer an email. Know that sending an email is just the first step, you need to call the person, get confirmation that what you need has been done, check that it was received, all before the deadline. This is the kind of persistence that will pay off.
I am here for you. I will answer any questions about your journey to college.
Ana María Soto
La College Guru