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How to get LUCKY with college applications

What better day than today, March 17th, to discuss luck and college admissions. Do you ever think about the percentage that luck plays into the admissions process?

I'll never forget a conversation I had with an Admissions Officer who implied that even though officers have guidelines and are trained on how to read a file, the human element could change a decision.

Now, I am not saying that the admissions process is based solely on luck, but humans, not leprechauns, read the files!

When you get an acceptance decision, I promise that it will not say that luck was part of the equation, so instead of wishing on a four-leaf clover, Williams Educational Consultants has four tips on how to create your four-leaf clover:


DISCOVER: It doesn't matter if you are a first- or third-year high school student; it is essential to discover your interests, motivations, and aspirations. What drives you in the classroom? What activities excite you? Who are your closest friends? Which teachers do you enjoy learning from most? Discovering yourself is part of the process. Allow yourself an opportunity to discover yourself in your community.


BE AWARE: Every school has a curriculum and sets unique programs for their high school. Therefore, you must be aware of your school's academic profile. For example, how many AP courses are offered? What tracks or programs are unique to your high school? Do you know your school's clubs, student awards, and athletic programs available for you? Awareness of your high school's offerings is critical for your application because you are being compared to others who are also graduating from your high school.


CHOOSE WISELY: High school is a time to make lots of decisions. For instance, which clubs to join, where to be a leader, what classes to take, and how to use your time outside the classroom? No formula will guarantee you an acceptance, but if you want to improve your luck, try choosing activities that you care about because your actions will speak loudly if you care about something. And more importantly, your mental health might thank you because if you are doing activities that you like and are proud of, your heart is happy, and your mind is clearer.


START EARLY: I get a question from most family who call me: "Are we starting at the right time?" My answer is always the same, "If you are calling, then the time is right for you!" Of course, luck might factor into this process a little. Still, most students who start early (as in 9th grade, not elementary school) have time to mess up, improve, try new things, find answers, and identify the colleges, majors, and possible career opportunities. The more time students have to discover, prepare and plan for, the healthier, happier, and more successful they will be in the college application process.


So, don't just wear green today, but create your four-leaf clover filled with possibilities, options, and goals. Showing college admissions officers that you discovered your path, were aware of your high school's offerings, made wise decisions, and started early with your educational pursuit might be the luck you need in changing a decision!

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