High School Senior PlanMake sure that you finish your high school career strong. Plan to knock out these items during your senior year. Check the Juniors page to see if there are things you might have missed last year.
12th Grade - The Senior Year
- Don't get "Senioritis! " Your senior courses and grades do make a difference. Being a senior means following through on college applications and preparing for the big transition to college.
- You can still take or retake the SAT I and ACT. See your counselor for dates. Early fall is best.
- If you're taking an AP course, get ready for the May exams.
- Continue to visit colleges that you missed during the summer.
- Send your college applications in early. Provide all requested materials, e.g., recommendations, transcripts, test scores, and essays. If necessary, ask your counselor about a waiver for the application fee.
- Applying for financial aid? Send in the required forms (FAF, FFS or FAFSA). You should be able to get them from the guidance office at your high school. Submit them in January or February for early processing.
- Note: ALWAYS TURN IN A FINANCIAL AID FORM, REGARLDLESS OF HOW MUCH INCOME YOUR FAMILY HAS. ANY MONEY IS BETTER THAN NO MONEY.
- Fat envelopes start arriving in March and April. Contact the admission office of any college that hasn't sent you a "Congratulations!" or "We're sorry, but..." letter by April 15. After you've decided on the college you plan to attend, you should notify all other colleges of your decision.
- If you're "waitlisted" by a college, contact the admission director to reiterate your interest in the school. If you're not admitted to any of the colleges to which you applied, see your counselor immediately -- you still have options. College Search can find colleges whose application deadlines haven't passed.
- Colleges mail financial aid decisions around this time. Read the letters carefully and completely. Wait until you've received a letter from each college before you begin comparing awards. Complete any aid-related forms, sign the award letter, and return any requested materials by the deadline. Funds are limited -- the college may offer your award to another student after the deadline passes.
- Make sure your final transcript and final grades are sent to your college. Colleges like to see strong second semester grades. Send thank-you notes to those who wrote letters of recommendation for you.
- Looks like a great deal of work? It's not really. Just take one step at a time. If you have already missed some steps, don't panic. See your guidance counselor for alternatives.
- Also, don't be discouraged by what your friends may tell you. Get the facts. Use all of your resources.
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