How to Apply to College: You’ve Got Options
All your college searching and visiting has led up to this moment: applying to college. You know there are reasons to apply to more than one college, and you know how many colleges you should apply to: but did you know that when it comes time to actually submit your application that there are decisions to make about that, too?
Instant College Admission
Instead of filling out and sending in your college application and waiting for a response, colleges like the University of South Florida Polytechnic, and Pine Manor College offer on-the-spot admission. Bring your application and all other required paperwork, like your letter of recommendation, transcript, SAT or ACT test scores, etc., to a local event designed to let you apply to a college and receive an answer right then and there. You’ll basically have a college interview, your application will be reviewed, and you’ll find out either way. You’ll still receive an official letter from the college in the mail but you won’t have the stomach-wrenching weeks spent wondering “did I or didn’t I?”.
One-Stop College Sites
Many states have decided to help students with the college process in a big way, by developing free college information specifically about public and private schools in the state and offering financial aid and admission applications. Not only that, but some of these sites also provide access to state-sponsored scholarships, free SAT test prep classes, career information, and other goodies. Indiana, Maine, and Kentucky are just a few states that have set up one-stop college websites.
Sometimes referred to as Snap Apps, you don’t choose this application option, this type chooses you! A small amount of schools send out partially completed applications to students who fit their admission requirements profile. They waive the application fee and keep it really simple: there isn’t even an essay to complete. Once you sign and send it in: you’re in, if you want to be. Tulane University, Marquette University, and Mount Saint Mary’s University are a few of the colleges who have used fast apps in the past.
Head to your favorite colleges’ website and with a minimal amount of searching you should see the option for you to apply right now this very minute! Online college applications are quick to fill out (messy handwriting is no longer an issue) and really cuts down on paper-waste. In fact, many colleges are encouraging students to bypass traditional mailed college applications in favor of the more Earth-friendly online application – and as a bonus are willing to let you apply for free. While you are online, you might as well try to find and apply for a few college scholarships, too.
The traditional (and slowest) way to send in a college application, sending an application through the mail takes a bit more time than the other avenues. You’ll have to wait for them to receive your application and respond to you. If time isn’t a factor and you can handle the wait, it’s still an option — though you might save yourself a few bucks (and a few trees) by trying the online option above, instead.