If you’re a high school senior:
- DECISIONS DELAYED — Some of your college application decisions MAY BE delayed, beyond April 1 as many campuses are closed. Best to check with colleges individually.
- DEADLINES EXTENDED — Traditional May 1 “college signing day” MAY NOT be a requirement as a commit date. Some colleges have already started pushing back this commitment deadline by a month or more. Best to check with colleges individually.
- COMMIT WITHOUT VISIT — You may have to decide which college to commit to without an in-person visit as most colleges suspended in-person admissions events and classes. Best to visit each college’s website for Accepted Students Virtual Orientation, Virtual Tours, and some outside online research such as CollegeData.com, CollegeConfidential.com or print resources such as Fiske Guide for Colleges.
If you’re a high school junior or younger:
- VIRTUAL VISITS — Most colleges suspended in-person admissions visits, events, and classes. Best to do research online and conduct virtual visits, and continuously check with each college when or if in-person events are put back on the schedule.
- SAT/ACT CANCELLATIONS — College Board and ACT have both put in place policies that may lead to cancellations and/or reschedules. Best to be prepared to take the tests as if they’re on, but begin exploring alternative options, including online testing option in certain markets.
- SUMMER PROGRAMS IN JEOPARDY — If you have confirmed summer academic, athletic, career, or enrichment programs, camps, or activities locally or internationally, it is best to identify alternative solutions.
Most importantly, keep in mind that this is a global pandemic —
This is not your typical local natural disaster such as an earthquake or a hurricane where the college admissions had to make special considerations limited to a certain geography from which their students apply;
This is not a national catastrophe that changed our landscape after 9/11 so much so that college admissions had to rethink their international student recruitment from the Middle East or predominantly Muslim countries;
While this is not as grandiose as the Black Plague that caused the lives of hundreds of millions in the 1300s, 7.7 billion people are all impacted by the Coronavirus (COVID-19). Your college admissions counselors, directors, deans of admissions, chancellors, presidents, and board members all go through what you are going through. While they’re not necessarily going to make admissions any easier, they will give you a break in certain taboos that have driven this process for so long. They will do so, because these are the times the human race must stick with each other, trust each other, and ensure each other’s safety.
And just like the Ying-Yang theory, every disaster is an opportunity. Therefore you have a task, too. Ask yourself: what can I do as a college-bound student to help myself, my family, my friends, and humanity in this crisis? What should be my priorities? What can I do to improve? Your answers could just provide the mental focus you need to stay in the game.
Still anxious? Call us 713-871-1048 and we will meet online to discuss further!
Around this time last spring, I started working with a transfer student who I’ll call John. On paper, John was in an enviable situation. Not only was he attending a private university, but he had been accepted to a special first-year program where students worked directly with professors and lived on a separate campus. Immersed in a tight-knit academic community and living with some of the brightest students within an already elite university, John seemed to “have it made” and be on an excellent track to eventually enter the business world.
However, John’s actual college experience was starkly different from how it would appear on his resume. He often felt isolated to the extent that twice a week, he commuted four hours round-trip to attend classes and club meetings on the main campus. Perhaps worst of all, John seemed to have the nagging feeling that a traditional business career was not for him, even though he had already taken several classes and an internship to work towards that professional dream.
On our first session, John and I had a deep conversation about his passion for fine cuisines, wine, and the hotel industry. Working from this initial session, we realized that his best transfer options weren’t universities with traditional business programs.
I recommended that John look at Cornell University’s School of Hotel Administration (HSA). He was initially skeptical, but when I reminded him of how passionate he sounded in our conversation about the hospitality industry, he ultimately chose to apply.
John is now a sophomore at Cornell’s HSA. Though my contact with him ended after he submitted his transfer application, I received a note from John’s father in May:
“You were the first to listen and were able to find him [John] a program that matched his interests along with a college environment that he wished. He is excited and we are too. This will be the turning point and choice of a career that John was looking.”
John’s story has driven home how important it is to listen to the high school seniors and transfer students whom we help at Firat Education.