Time to Breathe a Sigh of Relief?
You know how in soap operas, the minute you think the story is winding up and you can breathe a sigh of relief because everything worked out for the good guys, looming in the background is a mysterious stranger who is about to wreak havoc on everyone’s ephemeral happiness?
Welcome to the world of college admissions!
Now that for the most part we have successfully navigated the treacherous waters of November 1 deadlines and Rolling Admissions, we have before us a new set of deadlines—November 30 for California schools and Ohio Wesleyan, etc., December 1 for scholarship consideration for Boston U, U of Cincinnati, Auburn and several other schools—and of course the dreaded January 1 for nearly everything else.
A Gentle Reminder About Counselor Forms
If you are applying on the Common App and you have invited your teachers and me, you can be sure that our recommendations and your transcripts will automatically be sent to each of your colleges when you submit your applications
If you have any non-Common Applications that have deadlines from now through January 15th you must have the school form in to Patti absolutely no later than Friday, December 12th. Forms submitted after that deadline will not be processed until after December Break, which means they will be late. If your college has Rolling Admissions, remember, the sooner the better!
Your turning in the school form is what triggers our sending your transcripts to Non-Common App schools. In some cases, the school form is not obvious. If you are applying to a Non-Common App school and do not find a form on their application or website, sometimes we need to dig deeper—and sometimes we just send the transcript and recommendations with a cover letter. IF YOU ARE SURE THERE IS NO FORM, YOU MIST SEND AN EMAIL TO PATTI AND BRIDGHETTE WITH YOUR REQUEST. IT IS ABSOLUTELY IMPERITIVE THAT YOU MAKE CLEAR IN WRITING IF YOU NEED TO HAVE TRANSCRIPTS SENT TO NON-COMMON APP SCHOOLS. We are not mind-readers! REMEMBER, EXPECT A TWO WEEK TURN-AROUND TIME FROM YOUR REQUEST UNTIL YOUR TRANSCRIPTS GET SENT, SO DON’T WAIT UNTIL THE LAST MINUTE!
A future heads-up: the College Counseling office is closed when the school is closed—so you won’t be able to get college help for all of Thanksgiving Break and December Break. I’m pleased to say all of you look well focused on the task at hand, but if you need other help, be sure to see me before the big breaks. If an issue comes up over a break period, call the College Counseling Office, and leave a message—we’ll deal with the issue the first day we’re back. You, of course, are free to work on your part of the applications right up to the deadline, but save yourself some grief by getting them in before the very end!
Since this set of deadlines includes a lot of schools and we will be unavailable during the break, make sure you do the following:
- Hand the forms directly to either Bridghette or Patti. That way you can be sure they have been received
- Make sure to fill out the top of each form, as well as the section of the form that asks for your current classes—fill that part out even if it’s in the middle of the form. Most importantly, make sure to sign and date the form!
- If the application has a midyear school report form, fill out the top of the form, provide a separate envelope for it, and turn it in as well.
- Remember to do all of this at least two weeks before you need to have everything sent
In other words, PLEASE help us help you by getting us the information we need and adhering to the deadlines.
A FIRM Reminder About Teacher Letters and Forms
When you ask a teacher to write a letter of recommendation, you need to remember that they are doing you a favor. This isn’t part of a job description, it isn’t an assumed duty, and they don’t get time off from the rest of the great things they do for you to write them—this is an extra. In the interest of being courteous, you need to do the following things to help them help you:
- First, give them time—no last minute “I need this recommendation by tomorrow’s!”
- If you have invited them on the Common App, relax. If it is for a scholarship or other Non-Common App school, you can save everyone a headache and insure things are sent on time if you do one of the following:
o Make sure they have given me a copy (hard copy or email) and we can send the letter out—or—
o Give them a stamped envelope addressed to where you want the letter sent. The envelope must be addressed, because they can’t send the letter without the address; it also needs a stamp for the same reason.
Your teachers are writing these letters because they care about you, and because they want to help you— if you want the application process to work, be sure to touch base with your letter writers next week, with forms, proper envelopes, and lots of gratitude in hand.