Sorry to disappoint, but I don’t mean basketball. 😉 I mean the madness Seniors feel this month in anticipation of end of March/early April admission results; the madness Juniors feel about the weight their next real ACT/SAT will have on their summer plans; the madness Sophomores feel knowing they need to choose their Junior year classes wisely; and the madness Fresh(wo)men may not yet feel (but should) knowing that the summer ahead is the first one that really “counts.”
We’re here to tell you that it’s going to be okay. Here are some tips to help you feel even more prepared for what’s ahead, regardless of which year of high school you’re currently in.
The time has come. (Almost). We trust that you haven’t let Senioritis take over completely and that you’ve continued to demonstrate academic excellence in all of your classes. You’re likely already taking it easy (or at least a lot easier than you have in the past 3+ years), so my primary tip to you would be: maintain an optimistic perspective, no matter the outcome. That’s true of any situation. I know it’s easier said than done, but a positive attitude goes a long way; with it, you’re bound to make the most of your college experience no matter where you end up, and will undoubtedly attract friends, professors’ respect, and job prospects’ interest in you as a result.
Oh boy, oh boy. You know what’s ahead -- taking the REAL standardized exams that matter, selecting the appropriate teachers for recommendation letters, making the most of the last summer as a high school student, writing all of your application essays, making an impact through your extracurriculars, not neglecting self-care in all the madness… It’s a lot, we know, and most people tout Junior year as “the most important” in all your high school years because of all of this. Time management will be all-the-more crucial from now onward, so meet with your college advisor, craft a calendar for what the next ten months will look like, and stick to the schedule you choose. If you do, you’ll be sure to knock out all the most important action items ahead of you -- easy peasy.
You’re not quite feeling the time crunch, but standardized testing is definitely looming over your head. When do you start preparing? How do you start preparing? The time is now, and the help is here. It’s never too soon to start thinking about familiarizing yourself with the format of these exams and building strategies to tackle the toughest questions. Is reading comprehension a struggle for you? Go ahead and challenge yourself with sample reading passages and questions -- daily. Yes, daily. Is math a struggle? Review the tips shared by LogicPrep’s experienced instructors to master this section consistently. The sooner you start, the sooner you can be done with this inevitable (but very valuable) part of the application process and have room to prioritize other goals for your personal and academic growth.
It feels too early, I know, and in some ways, you don’t have too much to worry about yet. However, many schools open up higher-level advanced classes starting in Sophomore year to the highest-achieving students, and you want to seize those opportunities if they’re available to you. March of Fresh(wo)men year is the right time to arrange for any prerequisites to AP/IB courses your school offers, look into reputable summer opportunities to expand your academic, social, and leadership experiences, craft meaningful projects to scratch that creative itch, and make a serious impact in your community. Start brainstorming now and create an action plan just in time to implement it effectively at the end of this school year.
Truth be told, March can be an exciting time for everyone. And it’s not just because your bracket looks promising.