The Waiting Game                                                              by Patti Brugman

What should you do while you’re waiting for the college mail to finally arrive?

          These last four or five weeks of waiting can be the longest.  You’ve submitted all your applications. (Big sigh there. ) And you’ve finished the fall semester of junior year.  (Hurray!) About now, you might be feeling anxious. When will that first letter arrive?

         Rather than check the mailbox twice a day, do a few things while you wait that might actually help your chances for a better outcome.

1.  Call you favorite school, talk to an admissions director, give your name, and ask one good question about the school. You can ask something about housing, your intended major, or the likelihood of emplyment after graduating from Dream U. By making this call, you’re sending a message to that school that if they accept you, you will accept them. Now that you’ve called, maybe they will!

         2. Make a list of your achievements since you sent in your applications.  Did your gradepoint average go up significantly? Did you earn a special award?  Did you accomplish a private goal, or complete a significant service project?  These things are all worthy enough for you to write a letter to all your schools, chronicalling the special achievements you’ve made since applying to college.

         3. Keep going in the right direction.  Remember that you’re a student with a reputation to maintain.  This is not the end of the line so don’t crash the train!  Study, take life seriously.  Enjoy these precious times in high school, but study like you want straight As.

         4. Find a positive way to make it into your local paper.  Maybe you could do raise money for the library, give a recital that benefits a school for the blind, or campaign for someone or something that your really believe in.  No matter what, you’ll feel like a star and people will notice the new you.  And if you do make it into the paper, cut out the clipping and send copies of it to your favorite colleges.  It might make a difference.

         5. Make contingency plans. You’ve applied to a certain number of schools, each with certain requirements, and each with noteworthy advantages.  Start thinking through your list.  “If I’m accepted to colleges B, C, and D, which will I likely take?  If college D gives me money and college A doesn’t, what should I do?”  If you’re not accepted to Dream U, what then?  Taking the time now to consider your priorities will really benefit you later.  When those letters, e-mails, and packets start arriving, you’ll only have a month to respond.  What will you say? Call us for help if you have trouble with that decision.