College Timeline

Below are a list of resources to start the college planning process from 10th grade to 12th grade!

Sophomore Year

  • Become familiar with college entrance requirements and how your high school grades and extracurricular activities will be viewed.
  • Find out about the different types of colleges and universities.
  • Begin to plan what schools you would like to visit.
  • Consider what characteristics are important to you as you are looking at a college; things like large or small, public or private, location, facilities, academic offerings, etc.

Junior Year

  • Maintain good study habits.
  • Participate in extracurricular activities.
  • Identify career interests.
  • Identify locations for community service activities.
  • Take the PSAT October 19th 
  • Prepare for the SAT or ACT.
  • Begin the college search process (identify colleges, seek scholarship information, etc.).

Spring of Junior Year

  • Select senior year courses. Remember to continue challenging yourself academically.
  • Consider or plan to visit colleges spring semester.
  • Register for upcoming SAT and/or ACT tests.
  • Look for and attend college fairs.
  • Begin thinking about summer plans

Summer of Junior Year

  • Work – save money for college.
  • Complete community service hours.
  • Consider taking a summer course, such as SAT prep or essay writing.
  • Visit colleges that interest you.
  • Athletes: Find out if you need to register with the NCAA Clearinghouse.

Senior Year

  • Maintain good study habits.
  • Participate in extracurricular activities.
  • Complete the college application process.
  • Seek financial aid starting October 1st with the FAFSA
  • Take SAT and/or ACT, SAT II and other required tests.  

Fall of Senior Year

  • Check your course schedule with your school counselor. Make sure you are taking all required courses and review your transcript.
  • Develop college application plans with your parents and counselor.
  • Identify colleges that you would like to apply to and the get applications.
  • Familiarize yourself with the application process and Naviance 
  • Begin working on college applications; take note of all deadlines.
  • Keep track of all correspondence with colleges.
  • Bring in applications for mailing allowing 10 school days for processing
  • Register for any additional ACT, SAT or TOEFL exams.
  • Check the counseling website and listen to the announcements for scheduled visits of college representatives.
  • Plan campus visits and interviews, or take “virtual tours” and make appointments to have interviews locally. 
  • Request letters of recommendation from your teachers and counselor.
  • Prepare your a student resume.
  • Continue preparing and finalizing college list.
  • Continue meeting college reps, visiting colleges (if possible) and interviewing.
  • If applying Early Decision, prepare application, request all necessary documents.
  • Begin researching financial aid and scholarships.
  • Begin drafting college essays. Review the essay with your counselor, English teacher and parents.
  • Apply for ROTC scholarships, if interested.
  • November 1st and November 15th are the deadline dates for some colleges’ Early Decision.
  • November 1st is a common deadline at several universities.

Winter of Senior Year

  • Register for and take the ASVAB, if interested.
  • Regular Decision admission deadlines are often December 15th or January 1st – check your college application materials.
  • Submit college applications with January deadlines two weeks before winter break.   
  • Rolling Admission and Early Decision students, look in the mail. If accepted, see what deposits are required for tuition and housing.
  • Submit your completed Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form. Keep a copy for your records.
  • Begin requesting scholarship applications.
  • Continue looking for scholarship money.
  • Receive Student Aid Report (SAR) from the Federal Student Aid Program, and review for accuracy.
  • Respond to requests from colleges for any additional information needed.

Spring of Senior Year

  • Begin receiving financial aid award letters from the colleges you have applied to, and make comparisons.
  • Investigate payment options with each college.
  • Accept all or part of the financial aid offered; sign and return acceptance letter.
  • Many schools will require commitments to attend soon; deposits will be required.
  • Send a final transcript.  Bring a stamped, addressed envelope to the guidance office with your name printed on the back flap of the envelope. 
  • Graduate!