Got College Mail!?
My almost ten-year-old received his first piece of college mail yesterday: cue his excitement and my surprise.
Our mail was a bit of a premature fluke, but for college-bound high school students, receiving mail (postal or email) is an anticipated right of passage. Whether you're a student who is scrambling to get on mailing lists and explore college options, or you are already receiving daily inundations in your mailbox that leave you and your family feeling overwhelmed, it's important to know how to navigate the college planning process and how you'll narrow your options.
How Do I Get on Mailing Lists?
Refer to your College Selection List*
Research contact information, then call or email schools that interest you
Request that information to be sent to your home
Visit college websites to search for online brochures to print out
Consider participating in College Board's free Student Search Service® which will give colleges and universities the green light to send you information on finding a school that's the right fit for you
Take the PSAT - colleges & universities buy information from College Board to begin targeting future admissions classes. Check one small box and prepare for the onslaught of college mailers!
Ultimately, college is a business, and schools are seeking your application. They are already searching for prospective students and would be thrilled to share materials to solicit your interest.
What Do I Do With All of This Mail?
Create a College Crate to collect it all
Add two hanging folders: Interested & Exploring
Interested: Colleges that offer qualities that you have identified as an appropriate fit (geographical location, population, programs, etc.)
Exploring: Colleges that piqued your interest, but you don't yet have enough information to make an informed decision
Not interested in a college? Trash, or better yet, Recycle the brochures!
Buyer Beware: The postcard effect is real! Brochures, pamphlets, and mailers are designed to project a picture of perfection, so use your keen eye to decipher what will be the best fit for you. Be sure to read carefully and treat materials as informational rather than romanticizing their ploy to obtain your application. Ask questions, do your research, take college tours from the interested pile, and speak with students to fact-check what the university touts.
It is estimated that a typical high school student could receive upwards of 60lbs of mailers during their college selection process! Understanding how to process these marketing materials will help you maintain your sanity and manage the resources sent your way.
With over 4,000 colleges and universities nationwide, many students feel overwhelmed trying to decipher what they want in a prospective college and where is best to apply. Students should navigate their college exploration with regard to their individual aspirations and interests and try to avoid being persuaded by the masses.
*Not sure as to where you should start with your College Selection List? CBCR can help! CBCR resourcefully works with families to create a strong College Selection List that aligns with students' academic, social, and financial goals. We explore student-specific interests, aspirations, and plans to narrow the scope of options and identify options that will create a return on investment.
Approaching Application Season confidently, in August of 2022, with a supportive team, will enable students to apply with experienced guidance throughout the admissions process.
CBCR is currently accepting Juniors in the Class of 2023!
Contact College Bound, Career Ready, LLC for an initial consultation by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or utilizing the Contact Us page on our website http://www.collegeboundcareerready.com.
Learn how to navigate all of these college mailers so that you, too, will be College Bound Career Ready!
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Sarah K. Cook
February 8, 2022