I’m about to drop some truth bombs.
1. Finish your Common App essay over the summer.
2. It’s not too late to add a few more extracurricular activities to your list. You can still get involved in new things senior year if your Common App seems to be lacking.
3. Be nice to freshmen. Don’t act superior to them. You may even become friends.
4. Prioritize homework over social stuff first semester.
5. Recycle supplements as much as possible, even if it means rewording a little. Hey, it’s better than starting from scratch.
6. When you find yourself with some extra time, don’t watch a TV show. Take a nap.
7. Get lots of driving experience/get your license before you leave home.
8. Exercise is a great habit to get into before you leave for college. (Goodbye freshman 15!)
9. Get a job! At the very least, you’ll want to save up extra spending money for college. But you also may not get as much financial aid as you wanted, so those extra savings may come in handy.
10. Get really involved in your passions. Put more time into your sport or musical instrument. Make the school paper or yearbook the best it can be.
11. Go all out at spirit week. Attend some school sports games. Go to prom. Take every opportunity to have all of the quintessential high school experiences with your friends.
12. Make time for relaxation second semester, but don’t totally blow off schoolwork.
13. Ask for advice from friends who are already in college.
14. Don’t let friends or family overly influence your college decision.
16. Don’t compare yourself to others. Everyone has struggles and issues that you don’t know about. No one’s life is perfect, even if it may seem like it on Instagram.
17. Visit colleges second semester if you’re having a hard time making a choice. Most people come back from these visits sure of where they are going to go to school.
18. After you’ve made your college decision, make sure you stay on top of all of the college-related stuff you still have to get done, such as housing forms, registering for classes, etc. Do your research about which options are best for you. Next year will be a lot less enjoyable if you can’t get the housing and the classes that you want.
19. Use websites like in order to find as many scholarships as you possibly can.
20. Say thank you to teachers and parents.
21. Push yourself outside of your comfort zone and don’t be afraid to embarrass yourself. After all, you probably won’t see most of these people ever again.
22. Don’t leave anything left unsaid.
23. Be appreciative of the things you’ll be missing next year, such as your own bedroom, bathroom and home-cooked meals.
24. Realize the insignificancy of petty drama. Forgive people! This is not the time for grudges. This is probably the last time you and all of your friends will be together.
25. Don’t spend too much time daydreaming about next year. Live in the moment.
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About Nadira Berman
As a Summer Marketing Intern, Nadira is excited to help high schoolers prepare for the SAT and ACT. As a freshman at the University of Pennsylvania, she is considering studying economics. In her free time, she reports for the school newspaper and styles photo shoots for the school's fashion magazine. Besides fashion and journalism, her passions include bagels, smoothies and Netflix.
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