8 things h.s. seniors should do now

campus tour

All those high school AP classes may be demanding, but we’re already in the college application season.

The College Solution writer Lynn O’Shaughnessy suggests you’d better put your nose to the grindstone and start doing this:

1. Meet college reps. This is a wonderful chance to make a great impression.

2. Visit schools. How will you know if you’d like to attend the school if you haven’t checked it out yourself? Otherwise, here are 9 alternatives to a college visit.

3. Get organized. Use a calendar to keep track of the application deadlines for all the colleges on your list.

4. Retake the SAT or ACT. If you’re not happy with your previous test scores, you’ve got time for one last try.

5. Get a financial aid pre-read. During the early fall, financial aid officers have time for you. If a verdict is bleak, consider looking elsewhere.

6. Write your college essay. Better now than the night before you submit your college application.

7. Ask for recommendations. Don’t wait until the Thanksgiving break. Ask now and you could boost your chances of getting thoughtful, well-written recommendations.

8. Whittle down your list of schools and start applying. And keep your list down to eight colleges or less.