Accepted into College? Here’s What You Should Do Next
It’s finally here. You see a large envelope in the mail, and a part of you already knows what’s coming. After the long nights studying, the hours writing and editing, you take a deep breath in and open that long-awaited letter. Finally, you’ve been accepted into college.
As the weeks pass, you receive more acceptance letters. Now you’re wondering, what’s next?
We’ve put together a list of the steps to take after getting accepted into college.
1. Update your friends and family.
This step is easy to take for granted. You want to get moving, and you think your friends and family can wait until you make your final decision. Aside from telling your parents and friends because they care for you, this is an important part of the time between getting accepted and enrolling in a college. Take a step back, feel grateful for the encouragement you’ve gotten from others along the way. Most importantly, feel proud of yourself. You did it! Share your excitement with your close friends and family. They will want to know so they can support and encourage you through this time.
Tip: Find out if your friends or family have connections with anyone who has graduate from or is attending your potential college. Ask if they’d be willing to connect with you. Even a quick text conversation with a current student could set you at ease and help you make your final decision.
2. Visit campuses.
No matter how much Googling you’ve done, nothing tells you which college is right for you more than visiting the campus. Ideally, you’ll have the opportunity to visit during the semester so you can really picture yourself there. But, even if you go during spring break or on a long weekend, you’ll be able to walk around and envision yourself there. Many students choose their school based on the gut feeling they have when they visit. Looking back, they’ll often explain how they decided on their particular school, saying, “When I was touring the campus, I just knew.”
Tip: Before you visit the campus, try to arrange with an admissions counselor. They may be able to facilitate you meeting with a current student or speaking with a professor in your program. The more information you gather, the more you’ll be able to narrow down your choices.
3. Explore financial aid options.
With most acceptance packages, you’ll receive information about your financial aid package, including any scholarships you might have received. Compare the costs associated with each college and to start narrowing down your list of Definite No’s and the Definite Maybes.
One school might have given you a smaller package, but also awarded you with a scholarship or having a lower Room & Board cost compared to the other schools. This Financial Aid cost comparison tool is an easy way to break down your comparisons.
4. Accept offer of admission.
Some schools, like Iowa State University, require you to fill out an admissions form along with submitting a deposit. Other schools, like Virginia Tech and PennState, will have you create a student account and accept and pay the deposit online. Read your admissions letter carefully and be sure to follow any instructions that the admissions department sends your way.
5. Send required documents.
From filling out housing preference forms to scheduling your First Year orientation, be sure to read any correspondence from your college carefully. You don’t want to miss out on an opportunity or end up in a tough roommate or housing situation by not following the college’s deadlines.
6. Notify other colleges of your decision.
Once you’ve submitted your deposit to your selected school, you’ll need to let the other colleges know your decision. Either call or email your admissions counselor at each school to let them know what you’ve decided. If you’re wondering why you need to take the time to let other colleges know, think of it this way: each college has a waitlist of students. By letting the college know your plans, you are opening the door for someone else.
Cover Photo by Element5 Digital on Unsplash