Let’s talk about dedicated interest today.
In the olden days (aka, pre-2020), one of the best ways to show dedicated interest in a university or college was simply to show up for a tour.
Sure, there were other things a student could do…but this method was pretty straightforward.
Now…in the era of COVID…what’s a student to do?
Thankfully, there are a number of ways your student can show interest in a particular school or schools today…even in a time of COVID.
1.) The first, and admittedly the easiest, is to open the dozens of emails that flood a student’s inbox. And not just open them, but do so in a timely manner.
Schools assume that if you are interested in attending, OF COURSE you want to read what they have to say. It’s okay to ignore email from schools a student isn’t considering, but if a school receives an application fee from you? Your kid should DEFINITELY be checking out their emails, AND, they should take advantage of the virtual programming being offered in those emails. Colleges track this sort of engagement–so this is an easy way to to indicate interest.
2.) And if a school isn’t offering opportunities for engagement via email, your student should search the school’s website for webinars and virtual tours, and then take part in anything offered. Universities typically track the prospective students who reach out or attend these offerings.
3.) Speaking of reaching out, it’s a great idea for prospective students to connect with admissions officers. They don’t need to become BFFs, but emailing a question or three about fit factors or program requirements that are unclear is a great way to tell the school, “I’m SO interested! I’m reaching out to learn more about what I don’t know.” Encourage your student to ask questions that aren’t easily answered by the website (or, you know, one of the dozens of emails they’ve already received).
4.) Class ‘21 students should plan to participate in any optional activities as they apply, like an alumni interview. (Not sure if the school offers this opportunity? What an excellent question to ask an admissions officer!)
Speaking of optional activities, here at College Liftoff we say, “YES!” Write the optional supplemental, make the optional video, do what it takes to say, “Yep, I’m committed to your school already.”
5.) Finally, nothing says, “LET ME IN!” more than applying early. I’m not recommending early decision, mind you, but instead, applying by the early action deadline (if offered). At College Liftoff, we help our students plan for meeting early application deadlines, so colleges hear, loud and clear, “I choose you.”
I always think about When Harry Met Sally during this season. You know at the end of the movie, when Harry runs across New York to reach Sally and declare his love?
“ I came here tonight because when you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of the life to start as soon as possible.”
That’s why students should apply by the early action deadline. Tell your kids to be like Harry. Declare, “I choose you!”