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If you’re a high school junior or a parent of a high school junior, the time to start making concrete admissions plans is now. While you may think that you’ve got plenty of time to select schools, devise an overall admissions strategy, and cook up brilliant essays, you will find precious research and deliberation time slipping away as the spring months proceed.

Going through the admissions process has become a monumentally important family event. If you rush through it, you’ll find it very stressful. If you research proactively and plan methodically, it can be an amazing growth experience for students and families alike.

The key to success in admissions is giving yourselves the calendar space to to think over difficult decisions, craft unique essays, and prepare each component. Give your application space to breathe. This is why it is essential that you begin the admissions process early, sticking to a paced and steady schedule.

Follow these three simple steps to keep your college applications on-track for a win:

  1. Start early. We recommend beginning the process as early as January of your junior year.
  2. Plan. You will need a well-developed plan with solid short and long-term deadlines along the way. At Blue Stars we have created an admissions planning timeline to help guide you through this process.
  3. Establish accountability. The life of a high school junior and senior can be overwhelming. The admissions process is complex. Even the most talented and motivated of students can feel lost and fall off-track. We recommend that you meet at regularly scheduled intervals with someone who can help keep you moving forward.

Best of wishes for your admissions journey. If you have suggestions for blog post topics, or if you would like to reach out for more personal assistance, don’t hesitate to send us a message. We provide free, private one-hour consultations on Saturdays and throughout the week, in-person in the San Francisco Bay Area or via worldwide video chat.

Blue Stars Admissions Planning Timeline

Want more help with the college admissions process? Schedule a free consultation with Blue Stars today!

About the Author: Amy Morgenstern

Dr. Amy Morgenstern, affectionately known as Dr. M, is the founder and CEO of Blue Stars Admissions Consulting. She holds a Ph.D. in philosophy and an MFA in contemporary art. A former professor of philosophy, honors program associate director, and assistant to the director of the Aga Khan Program for Islamic Architecture, Dr. M brings a wealth of academic and multicultural experience to her practice.

Free Workbook for Students

Blue Stars College Planning Foundations Workbook

Start today! Go through these strategic exercises to help you sketch out your plans for all four years of high school.

  • Learn key traits important to top colleges.
  • Write your first personal narrative
  • Branch out, exploring interests and defining activities.
  • Set goals and create your 4-year college planning timeline.

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Resources to help teens and their families navigate the college admission process



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