After the intense activity around and attention to the details in applications, essays and college deadlines this past month, the inclination may be to sit back, smile with satisfaction, and relax. After all, aren’t you more or less on the finish line?
For high school seniors, especially, this is actually the time to be putting the pedal to the metal. Yes, take a breath and be proud of the work you have accomplished. But as the end of the first quarter or trimester approaches, attention to learning in the classroom and grades is important. Academic performance is still the most important factor in the review of an applicant. Some colleges may even require first quarter grades, but more importantly, a strong first quarter creates a solid foundation for first semester grades, and many colleges will require this report.
In last year’s admissions, given the unusual virtual learning environment and some grade inflation, colleges chose to defer more students than usual and asked for updated senior year grades. This year, we may be seeing a similar practice. More importantly, don’t you want to be the best you can be, whether it’s on the field, in the band, on the stage or in the classroom? Given that most of you are back in (real, live) school for the first time in a long time, make the most of your time in the classroom.
This advice is also true for freshmen, sophomores, and juniors! As freshmen and sophomores, you are trying to build a solid GPA foundation; and for juniors, the work you do this year and the achievements you make in grades is the “capstone” to your GPA before you apply to colleges. The cumulative GPA you earn at the end of your junior year is the one that will be used on your applications. So set your goals, keep a solid foot on that pedal, and don’t look back — it’s full steam ahead!
Seniors, we are so proud of the work that you have accomplished to date — let’s cross that finish line!