Now is the time to get those applications rolling and really narrow down those college lists.

Tip #1: What really matters on the college application?


  • Grades are the bulk of your application by far because they represent 4 years of your hard work. It is never too early to start thinking about college even as an 8th or 9th grader.
  • Test scores are extremely important. The SAT and ACT scores are all about the numbers. They’re an important index against the national average and where you rank in standing with other applicants and current students.

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  • What you do outside the classroom is paramount. Everyone does something but to get to the top college, you need to take honor roll as a leader. Do something you love and be excellent at it. It is the key! So get involved early in your high school career and work up to those leadership rolls.


  • This is where you can really shine. So you’ve been filling out your applications and bragging about your accomplishments, but colleges really look at what other people are saying about you.
  • Make sure you choose the right teachers, coaches, and club advisers to write your recommendations. Also, be sure it is someone you have worked with closely and really excel in their classes.

Application itself

  • The application itself includes essays and supplemental work that really allow you to explain experiences and skills in depth. This is where colleges get the whole picture of you so be sure to double and triple check deadlines, application materials, transcriptions, your essays, everything to be on top of your application.

Tip #2  Now that I’m accepted to college, now what?

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  • It is important to ask questions. Be sure all your questions about the university have been answered before you commit to attend that school.
  • Visit and even revisit the campus. Taking a tour of the campus can really help make those decisions easier. Its instrumental to sit down in a class and stay overnight to get the real experience. Stay, stay, stay overnight!

Compare financial aid

  • Compare financial aid and award offers. If you are debating between a few top schools, it is key to lay out financial information side by side.
  • Evaluate. Evaluate how much free money you receive through scholarships and grants, and how much you have to pay back in those loans.

So again,

Tip #1:  What really matters on the application?

Tip #2:  I got accepted to college. Now what?

Compliments of FireDream College Planning. To see video go to

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