Once you graduate, you begin to see everything in a different light. The crazy shenanigans you pulled weeks ago seem elementary and a thing of your past. Once you’ve had a taste of college, high school seems restrictive, kiddish, and illogical.
But to get to the stage of graduating and reminiscing, you have to graduate (preferably successfully). You have to start fresh and determined, and finish strong.
Because I have younger siblings and friends still withstanding the wrath of high school, I have collected a list of tips from my deep, dark past that will come in handy in times of college applications, AP tests, and the moment you walk the stage.
- Make a list of goals. If you’re just starting high school, make a list of goals for each year. If you’re mid year, do the same until senior year. You’ll be surprised at how much or little you expected for yourself and how far you got.
- Volunteer! And don’t only volunteer, look for causes that relate to the major you want to pursue, and most importantly, LOG YOUR HOURS! Make it a point for yourself to volunteer every other weekend, and keep a record of this.
- Start your resume. There’s plenty of templates online that can help with this. Simply find one from an older sibling or alumni, and simulate the format, but input your own data. It’s hard to sit down and collect all the data, but when you do, you’ll thank yourself.
- Don’t just join clubs, try to get a leadership role in each club. From student council to the newspaper community, find your niche and grow, grow, grow!
- Make friends with staff members and faculty, they’ll come in handy when you need letters of reference (bonus points if you are in good cahoots with english teachers or teachers who graduated from good universities). Although colleges only ask for three letters, submit five.
- Make friends with older kids/college kids. They’ll come in handy when you need help with college apps.
- COMPETITIONS! Whenever you get the change, participate in competitions. From forensic competitions like debate and speech, to improv or short film competitions, be on the search to broadcast your work and stun others. This will look fantastic on a resume. Look to do about five smaller competitions (like UIL tournaments) and prepare yourself to place. Participation certificates are gross.
- Brainstorm about your college application essays WAYYY beforehand. Talk to elders and other college students and ask them to review your ideas and help you organize your thoughts.
- Organize a calendar and set deadlines for yourself. If you’re applying to multiple universities, write down deadlines in your agendas, and DO NOT save everything for later! College isn’t a history project you can procrastinate on. This is the rest of your life on the line.
- Lastly, go with the flow. Perhaps you love a thing that is bad for you, or perhaps you hate a thing that is good for you. You NEVER know! So don’t limit possibilities and relax a little. Everything is exactly the way it was written to be.