Admissions Officer Insight: 5 App Tips from Vanderbilt University

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Zeben Ashton, Former Admissions Counselor, Vanderbilt University

The college application. A summation of your high school experience and a guide to who you think you’d like to become in the future. Naturally, it is one of the more stressful aspects of any student’s final year of high school. While college admissions counselors are telling students to “have fun with the process” and “not to stress” – students are looking at the process knowing that the outcome could have an incredible influence on their future.

That being said, it is an important process and while students really shouldn’t spend sleepless nights stressing about the question “is my application good enough?” – students should be prepared to invest a good amount of time into presenting themselves and their experiences to the best of their ability. How does one go about doing that? Here are five tips for students as they think about preparing their college applications. Continue reading

Dear QB: What do I need to know about the QuestBridge application and the Common App?

DearQBHere at QuestBridge, we know that the college application process can feel a little daunting at times. We’re here to guide you through that process, and questions about the Common App are not uncommon!

Before you dive in to both applications, make sure to read through these frequently asked questions:

Do I have to submit the Common App? If so, is it also due by the National College Match deadline?

Some of our college partners require you to submit the Common Application as an additional “College Match Requirement” if you rank them for the National College Match. You can see all college requirements on each college partner’s page under the “Application Requirements” tab.  Continue reading

The Three Things You Want Your Recommender to Know

RecommenderAsking a teacher for a recommendation is an important step on your path to college, and (as always!) we’re here to help. But before we go any further, register your recommender in your College Prep Scholars Program application, if you haven’t already. We strongly recommend that you ask a teacher who has taught you in a core subject area (e.g., math, science, history/social studies, English, foreign language). The earlier you ask for a recommendation, the better. You don’t want your teacher to feel rushed!
Continue reading

Admissions Officer Insight: Five App Tips from Amherst College

Looking for insiders’ tips about the college admissions process? Sara Cohen, Former Assistant Dean of Admission at Amherst College, shares her top five application tips to help you fill out the best possible National College Match application!

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Sara Cohen, Former Amherst College Assistant Dean of Admission

1. Organize the “Activities” section of the QuestBridge or Common Application to list entries in descending order of importance to you. In other words, start your list with the activities that you spend the most time doing, have been involved in for the longest period of time, or have developed leadership roles within, so that admission counselors will see your most important activities first.

2. List all your activities, even those that might not seem like “traditional” extracurriculars. If you work at a part-time or full-time job during the summer or school year, tell us. If you spend time taking care of a family member, caring for younger siblings, or maintaining responsibilities at home, tell us. Continue reading