Rising Seniors: Preparing for the Year Ahead

By IvyWise on Thursday, May 6, 2021

What Rising Seniors Can Do to Prepare for the Year Ahead

Many current juniors who will be rising seniors this summer are well aware that their final year of high school is exceptionally important. Students must juggle completing their personal statements, applying to colleges, and preparing for graduation, in addition to keeping up with friends and extracurriculars.

While 12th grade is certainly a busy year, there are several steps rising seniors can take during summer break to set themselves up for success. Keep reading for our top tips for making the most of your final year of high school.

Keep Track of Your To-Do List

There’s no denying that your senior year of high school is a busy time for all students. Instead of getting stressed out, take some time to write down everything you need to accomplish during the coming months to make sure you don’t miss out on any important deadlines. Start by taking note of some of the major academic milestones coming your way, including upcoming scholarship due dates and any standardized tests that you’re planning on taking this fall. Don’t forget to include any upcoming events related to your college search, such as dates for alumni interviews and any last-minute campus tours you need to schedule. Keep adding to this list throughout your senior year to make sure you’re staying on track.

Get a Headstart on the Common App

You don’t need to wait until you’re officially a high school senior to start your college applications. In fact, you can start inputting basic information and drafting your personal statement during the break. Rising seniors should take advantage of the summer vacation to get an early start on their college applications, which will help them feel more prepared throughout the year. Start with the basics, like what school you attend and your background information. Once you have that under your belt, you can begin drafting your personal statement. Take time to consider each of the essay prompts and start brainstorming ideas before you commit to writing your first draft.

Stay on Top of Your Academics 

You can’t let your schoolwork fall by the wayside during summer vacation, particularly when you’re getting ready for senior year. Make sure you’re staying academically engaged by keeping up with your independent reading list. Additionally, you should avoid waiting until the last minute to complete any summer homework that your teachers have assigned over your break. Instead, strive to complete these assignments during the beginning of your vacation, when they’re fresh on your mind.

Finalize Your College List

Summer is the perfect time to finalize your college list and learn even more about each of your best-fit schools. If you’re still exploring your options, consider signing up for a few tours (either virtually or in person) to get a feel for each campus. Make sure you’re monitoring each school’s social media accounts so you know what’s happening on campus and the kinds of opportunities students are taking advantage of during their summer break.

Don’t Forget to Save Time for R&R

While it’s important to be productive over summer break, don’t forget to save yourself some time to unwind. Your final year of high school is going to be busy, so it’s important for rising seniors to take some time for themselves over the break. Whether you go on a hike or take a trip to the beach, find a relaxing activity that you enjoy to add a little calm to your summer.

Although senior year may feel a bit overwhelming, it’s also an exciting milestone that every high school student should celebrate. If you’re getting ready for your final year of college and looking for expert guidance, our team of admissions officers is here to help.

Related Topics
12th Grade, In the Press
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