26 Weeks to College — Week 23

It’s almost here. The February lull. Manage it productively.
January 30, 2020

If you have been working your 26 Weeks plan steadily, you really don’t have much to do with regard to college admissions this week. Maybe an interview or two. Maybe some things related to financial aid. But nothing big. Yay! Stay on track by handling the lull well.



  • Interview with colleges.
  • Finish your FAFSA and keep copies of all the underlying documentation.
  • Check for new scholarship opportunities and complete applications for any that pertain to you.


  • Check your email, voicemail, texts, and snail mail for any communications that relate to applying to college. Read them and take whatever action is necessary.
  • Update your parents about what you’re doing. This regular communication will work wonders in your relationship with your parents during this stress-filled year.


Let admissions officers do their work.

Right now admissions officers are incredibly busy reading applications, yours included. You want them to concentrate on that task. So contact the admissions office when necessary, send in the suggested updates, and then leave them alone!

Refocus yourself on doing well to the very last day of your Senior year.

Contrary to popular belief, what you do after you submit your applications (and even after you’ve been admitted) matters. It matters because all admissions offers are conditional on your successfully completing high school. It matters because it helps when it comes to getting in off waitlists. It matters because your record follows you. It matters because you’ll feel better about yourself if you end high school well. Keep up your grades, give your senior project in a class your best effort, and go for the gold when it comes to your activities. It matters.

Avoid getting caught up in the drama of the rumor mill.

How do all too many applicants (and their parents) occupy themselves during this long period of waiting? Talking, texting, posting with other anxious applicants and parents. News flash: none of this serves you. Obsessing about when decisions will be out doesn’t influence when decisions will be out. Crowdsourcing your chances for admission doesn’t change your chances for admission. So do yourself a favor — even if only for your own mental health and emotional state — and stop talking, texting, and posting about college admissions.

Anna Ivey is one of the founders of Inline. An experienced admissions consultant and a frequently cited media expert on the topic of college admissions, she is also co-author of the book How to Prepare a Standout College Application. Learn more about Anna's background here.

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