Timeline

Fall & Spring / Junior Year: You and your mentor will be in weekly contact. At first, general conversations will serve to reveal what you hope to get out of college as well as to identify your general interests, planned extracurricular activities, and potential majors of interest. The most important goal in junior year is for you to start thinking not just about college, but also your potential future goals so those can inform your decisions along the way. This step is essential to putting together a genuine and sincere application that reflects your unique qualities — not a packaged candidate.

The most important goal in junior year is for you to start thinking not just about college, but also your potential future goals so those can inform your decisions along the way.

Your mentor will advise you on considerations and timing of college entrance exams, SAT and ACT, and other exams such as SAT II, AP exams or IB exams that may be appropriate for you. By January, you and your mentor will finalize your testing schedule and identify prep resources well in advance of test dates. Midway through the spring semester, you and your mentor will create a preliminary list of schools and begin to brainstorm essay topics. In April, you will complete a practice Common Application, including a practice essay, extracurricular paragraph, and extracurricular list. Your mentor will also encourage you to begin asking for letters of recommendation. For the remainder of your high school career, your mentor will also provide advice on: additional/repeat exams, what classes to consider, and how to manage your workload throughout. During the summer before your senior year, your mentor will guide you toward beginning to compile activity resumes and essays. At each step along the way, your mentor will be there to guide, support, and motivate.

Fall / Senior Year: The process of completing applications will begin in earnest. You and your mentor will be in frequent contact as you complete applications to all of the schools on your final list. At the same time, you and your mentor will begin evaluating financial aid options and scholarship opportunities. Your mentor will support you in keeping track of important deadlines, proofreading essays, and providing encouragement during this stressful time.

Spring / Senior Year: Once your applications are submitted, you and your mentor will use this ‘waiting period’ to plan visits to college campuses. Financial aid forms may still need to be completed, and mentors will continue to identify scholarship opportunities. After you’ve received replies from all the colleges on your list, you and your mentor will evaluate the offers in hand against your goals and priorities to reach the best possible decision for you.

By establishing a close working relationship early in the college admissions process, ReadySetLaunch hopes to give our students the greatest chance to succeed. ReadySetLaunch cannot guarantee admission to the school of your dreams, but we hope that our guidance and support will launch you that much closer.