Summer College Planning Checklist for Rising High School Seniors

college planning checklist

For high school seniors applying to colleges this fall, there are a lot of things to do during the summer.

  1. Start working on your Common Application; review the new essay prompts and new features.
  2. Start working on your college essays.
  3. Start visiting or re-visit colleges.
  4. Narrow down the colleges being considered.
  5. Make decisions regarding early action or early decision programs.
  6. Register for the SAT and/or ACT if you didn’t take a college entrance exam as a junior or want to take one again.
  7. For international students, register for the TOEFL or take one again.
  8. Get organized and start creating a checklist and calendar to keep track of standardized test dates, college application due dates, and financial aid deadlines.

College admissions continues to be competitive especially in Ivy League and highly selective college and universities.  My recommendation is that rising seniors should use their summers to start the college admissions process sooner than later.


Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe is the managing director and lead admissions expert at Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group.  Dr. Lowe specializes in providing exclusive concierge-type admissions advisory services for U.S. and international families and students who are interested in applying to Ivy League and highly selective colleges and combined BS/MD programs.  Dr. Lowe also helps students gain admissions into their top choice private schools and colleges after they have been deferred, wait-listed and rejected.

As an experienced and trusted admissions advisor for over 20 years, Dr. Paul R. Lowe is an active member of the following organizations that uphold the ethical and professional standards and principles of good admission practices in college and independent school counseling: Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA), National Association for College Admissions Counseling (NACAC), New Jersey Association for College Admission Counseling (NJACAC), New York State Association for College Admissions Counseling (NYSACAC) and International Association for College Admissions Counseling (IACAC).