Tag: Extracurricular Activities
What do Malala Yousafzai and Greta Thunberg have in common? Aside from their remarkable commitment to their causes, both started to work to build the society they want to live in before they turned 20. And they have a lot of inspiring company among young changemakers!
Summer can be a time for sleeping in, seeing friends and family, and almost forgetting you were a student for a bit. But it’s also an opportunity to work on projects you didn’t have time for during the school year. The real question is how to balance the summer with relaxing and being both personally and academically productive.
Most US colleges and universities use a holistic review method when reviewing applicants for admission, considering various aspects of a student’s academic and personal record. This includes the tangibles, like a student’s four-year transcript, test scores, recommendation letters, and essays. But it also includes the intangibles, like a student’s passions, interests, and motivations.
Passion. People die for it, poets write about it, colleges look for it. Yet, it’s so easy for passion to get lost in the flurry of assignments and deadlines.
We all know that grades and test scores are key factors in college admissions, but activities outside of the classroom are also very important. Schools are looking to build a class of specialists, so it's important to hone in on a few interests you're really passionate about and develop them. One activity that allows you to learn, document your experience, and demonstrate knowledge of a particular field or interest is blogging.
One of the best ways for students to explore their interests is through involvement in extracurricular activities. However, simply joining a club or activity isn’t where students should stop with their ambitions. Going the extra mile in clubs and activities can not only help students better identify and focus their interests, but it can also help them stand out when applying to college.
It’s a new year, a new semester, and the perfect time for students to reevaluate their extracurricular activities and whether or not those activities are really helping them better explore their interests. Students often overlook community service as a way to explore their interests because they tend to have a one-dimensional view of what community service entails. If they’re not collecting cans at a food drive or serving dinner at a local homeless shelter, what other community service is there?
It is widely acknowledged that demonstrating interests through extracurricular activities is a critical element of a robust college application, but students and parents are often unsure which process to follow. I encourage students to identify an interest and use it to build an extracurricular project plan. Projects should be selected based on fit, have a mix of milestones ranging from easy to difficult, show a clear link to each other, and incrementally increase in independence & difficulty.
Summer will be here before you know it, and with time off of school, students should pursue activities and programs that align with their interests. A productive summer break can help students stand out in the admissions process – while also helping them to really explore their interests and gain a better understanding of what they want to do with their college education. The key to a productive summer break is to plan ahead!
By Rachel, IvyWise Principal College Counselor The end of the school year is just around the corner – seniors have made their final college choice, AP exams are impending, and for you high school juniors, it's time to start thinking about how to get the most out of your summer. First, let me say, congratulations on having almost completed what is arguably the toughest year in high school! Hopefully you've been focusing on academics, as your junior year grades are particularly important in the college admissions process.
Junior year is probably the most important college prep year, and students need to ensure they’re on track in order to be prepared for the college admissions process next fall. The college admission process is about self-discovery and it is important to start by setting clear goals each year of high school – especially junior year! Junior year is critical.
So, you've begun developing your college list. Hopefully, you've established your priorities and started your research. Looking over your preliminary list, you can't pinpoint why several of those schools are even on your list in the first place.
When applying to college, the goal of most students is to “stand out.” They want to know what they can do to differentiate themselves from the thousands of other applicants they are competing against to win a spot at their top-choice college. Some students think a stellar essay will separate them from the pack.
By IvyWise MBA Admissions Counselors There are a number of resources out there that provide tips for undergraduates who have an eye on graduate school after college, but what about graduates who are years removed from academia? For many people, the MBA path isn’t apparent until after they have been in the workforce a few years, and, actually, the ideal time for most people to think about attending business school is with a few years of professional experience under their belts. Many working professionals don’t prepare ahead of time for the rigorous application process that exists at most top-tier business schools.
College admissions want to see you exploring your interests and making an impact outside of the classroom, and that includes what you’re doing during your summer break. Planning a productive summer can help you better understand your college and career goals, and can help you stand out during the admissions process, too. While students should start planning their summer activities at the start of the year, it’s not uncommon for many students to wait until the last minute to decide how to spend their summer break.
For most 9th and 10th graders, the thought of college is so far off they don’t want to engage with the process until it becomes more time-sensitive in 11th grade. Many think “well I have a lot of time to think about this,” and while this is true they also need to be actively engaging in simple college prep tasks to get and stay on track with their college admissions goals. This might sound overwhelming to some underclassmen – thinking about college prep while also juggling current schoolwork and activities – but when approached in the right manner it can be really fun and exciting for everyone!
By Alan Katzman, Founder of Social Assurity Each year, more and more of the world’s most talented students compete for the coveted opportunity to receive an Ivy League education. As a result of this intense competition, serious applicants with hard earned credentials now need to further distinguish themselves against other equally qualified peers. As admissions offices continually search for new ways to responsibly distinguish between the “best of the best,” social media’s role has grown in importance.
Just because you’re not a junior or a senior doesn’t mean you can’t be preparing for the college admissions process now. The earlier that you start the better, and there’s a lot that freshmen and sophomores can do now to stay on track for the college admissions process senior year – and even get ahead. All four years of high school count in the college admissions process, not just the last two.
By IvyWise Graduate Admissions Counselors You made it to college! You’re attending the school of your dreams and enjoying all that college life has to offer. For most undergraduate students, graduate school is a possibility, but many aren’t sure until closer to application time.
Is the study of history – history? In recent years, only about 1% of college students graduate with a degree in history. In fact, between 2008 and 2017, the latest year with available data, the number of history majors has plummeted by nearly 30%.
With all of the stress, pressure and confusion surrounding the college admissions process, it's no wonder that people start to develop their own theories on how it all works. You've likely heard a "secret" admissions rumor from a friend of a friend that has made you panic. But what is the truth?
When watching the Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, I was in awe of the high school-aged kids like Chloe Kim and Red Gerard on Team USA. How do they balance their intensive training and extensive travel schedules with homework and school commitments? Surely being an Olympic athlete is impressive, but how do sports affect the college admissions process for regular students?
Do you dream about sinking that winning buzzer shot in the Sweet Sixteen tournament? How about celebrating New Year's Day with a touchdown at the Rose Bowl? While nearly 60 percent of U.
As 2021 winds down and seniors begin putting the finishing touches on their early applications, the college prep process is still going strong for younger students. Setting academic and college prep goals for the coming year is a great way to get students excited about their college prep and alleviate some of the stress commonly associated with planning for college. While there are still a few more months until the New Year, starting to think about academic and college prep goals now will make it easier for students to identify solid goals by the time the new semester rolls around.
The college admissions process is a huge undertaking, and submitting your applications is a great achievement. Regardless of your admissions decisions, you should feel proud and celebrate this accomplishment. You can finally study for your next test, go to the movies with your friends, or read for pleasure without that little voice in your head (or perhaps a parent or IvyWise counselor) reminding you that you should be working on your college applications.
Am I doing enough? Am I doing too much? What do I need to do in order to stand out to college admissions officers?
Do you play the violin or clarinet? Sing? Are you a freestyle rapper?
It’s no secret that teens are connected online, with more than 71% of teens using more than one social networking site. As social media becomes more of a staple in everyday life for college bound students, many wonder how social media will affect the college admission process. While social media was once seen as a way to catch “bad behavior” and ruin college chances, it’s now turning into a tool to actually help students improve their chances of admission to their top-choice colleges.
While it can be tempting to simply count down the days until summer break, spring semester is a prime time for high school underclassmen to prepare for the college admissions process, and for college-bound seniors to close out the year on a high note. Believe it or not, seniors, you are not off the hook just yet! Here are some tips for high schools students to ensure a productive and successful spring semester.
You may be thinking that summertime is perfect for relaxing in the sun, hanging out with friends, and taking a break from school, but when it comes to college admissions, summer vacation is a crucial time for planning and working on application materials. Furthermore, summertime is an excellent opportunity to explore personal interests that can be emphasized on college applications. Here are some of IvyWise's suggestions for spending your summer vacation in a wise, productive, and fun way with some tips on how to get started!
For many rising seniors, the end of their junior year marks the beginning of the long, and often stressful, college application process. While the full Common Application and school specific supplements aren't released until August, some essay topics have already been revealed, and many students are taking the initiative to begin working on their application essays even before summer kicks off. While it's a great idea to get started as early as possible, there's much more than just essay brainstorming to complete the summer before senior year.
The school year may be coming to a close, but the college admissions process is just revving up for next semester’s high school seniors. While the summer is a good time to recharge, it’s also a great time to get on track for the college admissions process, no matter what grade you’re in. When it comes to college preparation, the earlier families start, the better.
For students who are in eighth or ninth grade, college seems so far away, but this spring is actually a great time to set the foundation for your future college admissions journey as you make the most of your present college prep. The choices you make now will have the immediate benefit of making your high school years enjoyable and challenging, but they will also help you to build a strong profile that will make you a competitive college applicant. The most important thing to know is that colleges do not have one type of student that they are looking for, instead, they want to see applicants who have different passions and interests.
IvyWise counselors Christine, Nat, and Eric discuss how the coronavirus pandemic is impacting higher ed and how the Class of 2021 can navigate the altered application cycle this semester on the college admissions podcast, giving listeners expert insight from former admissions officers. Listen Now! It has been well over a year since the pandemic's onset and information and responses are still continuing to evolve.
IvyWise counselors Victoria and Christine breakdown the college admissions rubric and discuss examples of different hard and soft factors that admissions officers evaluate on the college admissions podcast, giving listeners expert insight from former admissions officers. Listen Now! When making admissions decisions, colleges and universities in the US don’t just look at grades and test scores.
Middle school was the time to perfect your study habits and learn to organize and multi-task. Middle school was also a time for trial and error. You grew into your own skin, experimented with hobbies, and readied yourself for a more focused academic career.
Across the country high school seniors are making plans for life after graduation. For many college is the obvious choice, but not for all. Gap years, where students take time off between high school and college, are becoming increasingly popular in the US.
Compiled by Will Fitzhugh from The Concord Review The formal research paper in high schools has been steadily disappearing over the past two decades, and it shows no signs of revival. The accessibility of the Internet, larger high school class sizes, over-worked teachers, and a growing emphasis on alternative forms of research presentation has dwindled the traditional 15-20 page research paper to just a few pages and Power Point presentations. As the founder and editor of The Concord Review, I have spent the last 26 years championing the significance of the research paper.
In recent years, there has been a steady growth of Chinese students enrolling in US universities and colleges, with nearly 300,000 coming to the US for the 2013-14 academic year. Although this is a fairly small number compared to the nine million university students studying in China, the country has also seen a steady decrease in students who sit for its national college entrance exam, the Gaokao. This indicates that international education is unquestionably on the rise.
Attending university in the US is an appealing prospect for an increasing number of international students. Choosing to study abroad can improve a student’s resume, demonstrating to future employers an appreciation and understanding of the broader world. Studying in the US also offers students pathways into top US employers, and therefore possibilities for career opportunities that might be different than those available in their home country.