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  College Admissions Timeline

Colleges consider a wide variety of information when evaluating your admissions application. For example, your cumulative GPA, strength of curriculum, standardized test scores, extracurricular activities, and letters of recommendation are all factors in the admissions process. Knowing this, it is important to remember a few key points as you move through high school and look forward to college:

• Take responsibility for your grades and your learning.
• Challenge yourself academically. Grades are important, but colleges also pay attention to the rigor of your curriculum. Slightly lower grades in challenging courses are better than higher grades in less challenging courses.
• Work on developing your time management skills! Being able to balance your coursework with extracurricular commitments is a wonderful asset and it will benefit you throughout your academic career in high school, and beyond.

9th Grade

• Find one or more extracurricular activities that interest you - consistency and commitment! Colleges like to see that you've done something outside your coursework for four years. Begin using Naviance for resume documentation.
• Create a file to keep copies of report cards, a record of honors and awards, and a list of extracurricular activities (i.e. clubs and/or sports involvement at school, volunteer work, community service, and paid employment).
• Be open and honest about your interests when you meet with your counselor to discuss course registration for the next school year.

10th grade

• Take the PSAT in October.
• When you meet with your counselor to discuss course registration for the next school year make sure you are pursuing a curriculum that reflects your ability and potential - are you challenging yourself sufficiently? Talk to your teachers about course selections.
• Continue to update your resume periodically in Naviance.
• During school breaks, visit a few colleges to get a feel for different campus sizes (small, medium, large) and locations (urban, suburban, and rural).
• Continue to expand and document your extracurricular involvements and outside interests.
• Student-athletes should talk with their coaches about procedures to indicate interest in college-level athletics.
• Attend Catholic High School College Fair in October and College Information Night in February.
• Parents: Attend "An Inside Look at College Admissions" at school in January.

11th grade

Fall Semester
• Take the PSAT in October (National Merit qualifying test).
• Discuss SAT/ACT test prep options with your counselor.
• Meet with college representatives on campus.
• Continue extracurricular commitments - consider a leadership role!
• Attend Catholic High School College Fair in October and College Information Night in February.
• Plan to use your "College Visit Days" to explore as many schools on your list as possible (2 days total for juniors).
• Parents: Attend "Junior Parent Information Night" at school in October.

Spring Semester
• January - March: Set up an appointment with your counselor to discuss standardized test registration, courses for senior year, and to create a preliminary list of colleges.
• Register/Take the SAT (www.sat.collegeboard.org) and ACT (www.student.act.org) at least once.  Determine if Subject Tests need to be taken for college admission.
• Research college list using Naviance, guidebooks, the internet, and college visits. Talk to current students and alumni.
• Modify and update college list in Naviance as your interests become clearer.
• Athletes should file paperwork with NCAA Clearinghouse: https://web1.ncaa.org/eligibilitycenter/common/
• Update your resume with current activities and leadership roles.
• Determine with your counselor the faculty that will fill out forms and write letters of recommendation.
• Investigate sources of merit aid at schools of interest.
• Attend a spring or summer resume and essay writing workshop.

12th Grade

Fall Semester
• Schedule an appointment with your college counselor, and continue to meet with her as needed.
• If needed, register to re-take SAT/ACT.
• Know your application deadlines!
• Send SAT/ACT scores to colleges.
• Pay attention to scholarship announcements and deadlines.
• Meet with college representatives as they visit our campus.
• If possible, visit your top college choices - go to classes and stay overnight.
• Parents: Attend "Parent Information Night".
• Apply for a PIN # for the FAFSA: www.pin.ed.gov
• Plan to use your "College Visit Days" to explore as many schools on your list as possible (2 days in the fall, 2 days in the spring = 4 days total for seniors).

Spring Semester
• Fill out the FAFSA online (available January 1): http://www.fafsa.ed.gov/
• Save all scholarship documentation for the Madonna Day Program. Give your counselor a copy for her records.
• May 1: Students notify colleges of their enrollment. Be sure to send your deposit to only ONE school.
• June: Final transcripts sent to colleges by counseling office.
• Enjoy your final months at St. Agnes, and do your best to finish the year on an academic high note.

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