Top Tips For Rising Seniors

  • Start looking at your options early.

Start this summer! For future college students, the Common App opens super early and essay prompts are available as soon as you look them up. Start searching for scholarships through institutions you are applying to, the school website counciling pages, local businesses, and scholarship websites. Even if they aren’t open right away, it is better to look for an opportunity in advance rather than wait until it is too late or you are too rushed to apply. For those going into trade school or right into a career, apprenticeships and internships are available constantly and look great on future applications.

  • Apply for everything. 

Even if you don’t think you will get into your dream school or receive a certain scholarship or get a specific job, apply anyway. There are other people with less qualifications than you applying, and taking the chance is better than not giving yourself the opportunity at all. There are so many scholarships available through schools, and the more scholarships you apply for, the more chance you have of receiving one. If you want to play sports, fill out recruiting forms from every school you are thinking about applying to. If you have a dream job you think you’ll never get hired for, apply anyway. You’ve got more of a shot applying than you do never trying.

  • Contrary to the Chelsea norm, you don’t have to go to college

College is not for everyone, and that’s okay. There are plenty of great jobs and trade opportunities that don’t require degrees. There are also scholarship opportunities for trade schools, and if you are interested in that, start looking for these opportunities as soon as possible so you don’t miss any deadlines.

  • On the topic of applications: jobs are a great way to relieve some financial stress.

Even if it’s just a weekend job with minimum wage, the money builds fast and can help you save up for anything from the newest release to your college fund. And if you have a car, paying for gas is much easier when you don’t have to ask your parents every time you want to go somewhere.

  • YOU choose

As much as you wish someone would make the college decision for you, you have to make it. Not your friends. Not your parents. Not your teachers. It’s good to ask for advice, but don’t let someone else influence your decision more than you do.

  • You don’t have to go where everyone else does

If you do go to college, it’s still your life and no one else’s. You’re the one who has to live your life for the next two to four years! And this applies outside of college too. If you make a major life decision for someone else, you still have to live through it, not them. Is it worth getting outside approval if you’re going to be miserable while you do it?

(And YES, this means you don’t have to apply to U of M.)

  • Don’t forget to enjoy

Senior year goes by fast. Though there are a lot of difficult decisions to be made and classes to take, it is also a year full of exciting experiences you only have one chance to live through. Yes it is important to think about the future, but if that is all you do as a senior, you will miss the opportunity to have a great year. Spend extra time with friends. Join that club you always wanted to join. Become friends with that person you always admired. Take the new elective. This is your last chance to be a kid and be in high school… don’t throw it away by not living in the moment.