We’re now taking submissions for the next issue of Whats Good in the Hood! Send in your art, poetry, short stories, photography, and/or opinions to email@example.com. The deadline is April vacation, so get to it!
Congrats to the Lawrence High School Theater Company for making it to the next round of Drama Fest!
Yesterday at the festival in North Andover High School, they also several won awards including a stage managers award, four acting awards and a participation award! Out of 8 schools, Lawrence, along with Andover and St. John’s Prep will go on to semifinals in two weeks. Good job guys!
1. Plan to use every part of the application. Before you start, take a moment to think about what each part of the application - essays, extracurricular section, recommendations, and transcript - will say about you. Try not to repeat information in your personal statement that is obvious elsewhere. You want to paint as full a picture of yourself as possible, with a specific emphasis on the unique passions that separate you from thousands of other applicants. Many admissions officers are not only looking for the classic “well-rounded” student, but also for students with a demonstrated interest and skill in a particular area.
2. Your background is important to admissions officers. Remember that you can use the extracurricular activities section to discuss work experience and/or significant family obligations, such as taking care of your siblings or a sick family member. If you feel that something is particularly significant about your background, make sure you give admissions officers enough information in your essay, your extracurricular activities section, or in the section at the end for “additional information,” so that they can fully understand your situation. This is especially important for students from low-income backgrounds, whose unique experiences might otherwise be missed in a typical college application format.
3. Recommendations are an important opportunity to distinguish yourself from the crowd - don’t overlook them. Try to make writing your recommendation as easy as possible for your teacher by putting together a packet that includes your transcript, resume/activities list, a list of colleges you are applying to, the latest draft of your personal statement, any recommendation forms needed, self-addressed stamped envelopes, and a list of recommendation deadlines for your colleges. Also, most top-ranked colleges require a guidance counselor recommendation, so make sure that your counselor knows you well by the time you are ready to apply.
4. Little things that go a long way. If you spend a lot of time on a particular extracurricular activity, you want to be sure that the person reading your application knows exactly what it is. If you are not clear, admissions officers will often ignore it, so be careful with abbreviations. If someone who is not from your town, school, or state would not recognize an abbreviation (such as “NYSSMA”), write out the words instead (“New York State School Music Association”).
"It’s important to not make assumptions that college admissions officials know what different names or positions mean. Tell us specifically what it means. If you don’t tell us, we won’t know." -Diane McCoy, Senior Associate Director of Admissions, Columbia University
Since there are many more strong applicants to top-ranked colleges than can actually attend, admissions officers sometimes search for reasons not to admit someone. Small things can sometimes make the difference in whether an applicant is admitted or not, so be sure to:
Provide an appropriate e-mail address (firstname.lastname@example.org, as compared to email@example.com).
Be as professional as possible, no matter what form of contact you have with an admissions office.