Updated: Jul 31, 2019
This. Is. It.
This summer marks your last summer during high school. You are officially at the top of the high school food chain. You've almost made it! Congrats! Don't get too excited though. You still have a lot of work ahead of you. College apps, FASFA, scholarships, roommates. This list can seem endless.
This blog post is to list out some helpful step you can take during the summer before senior year to help lower the amount of things you have to worry about during the school year. This list won't include all of the things you have to, but it's definitely a start of things to do.
Finalize your college list and start applying
Now is really the time to narrow down your college list to about 5-8 good schools. Have a few safety schools, good fit schools, and reach schools that you apply to. Don't apply for too many, or have fun writing essays over and over. Choose an amount you can handle so that you have options and backups in case you don't get into the college you originally planned.
Also consider if you are staying in state, or trying to go out of state for college. This will change tuitions costs greatly, so talk with your parents if they are helping you pay for college about what the best choice might be for you.
Apply for scholarships
If you haven't been applying for scholarships, you really need to step up your game. There are scholarships everywhere. Take a few hours out of each day that you have time and dedicate it to applying for scholarships. Many scholarships have similar prompts, so you can likely reuse one essay you wrote for another scholarship.
Plan to Retake your SAT and ACT if needed
Don't wait until school starts back up to take your SAT and ACT if you can help it. Having to wait for SAT and ACT scores delays your application timeline process. If you must retake them during the fall once school resumes, order study books during the summer and USE THEM. Set aside an hour each day to studying for these tests.
finalize volunteer hours and create a resume
Although most schools don't require a resume, it's still nice to have one. It makes it easier to see some of your high school accomplishments. Some colleges also offer a career fair pretty soon after school begins. It doesn't hurt to go to them, so have a resume prepared. As far as volunteer hours, the more the better. Colleges like to see students who give back to the community along with balance school work. Make a list of who you have volunteered for and for how long with how many total hours. Doing this before college apps makes the entire process easier, as all the info you need is already organized.