Junior Year: Fall, Step 6

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Develop a System for Your College Documents

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We all know calendars are great ways to keep track of deadlines, but make sure you pick a calendar type -- on your phone, on the wall, in your planner -- that works for you.

Keep your stress level down and avoid misplacing important documents by creating a system for all your college planning materials.

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Remember when we talked about keeping track of your college list? This is just one example of documents and materials that you’ll need to keep tabs on throughout your college search. Toldos triangulares asimétricos de varios tamaños

Whether it’s pieces of mail, college checklists, flyers from college fairs or financial aid nights, emails, resumes, application forms, college statistics, or information on standardized testing, you’ll need somewhere to organize and store all of this…stuff.

And you’re just a junior, there is a lot more…stuff…to come.

Not convinced you need to get organized? Think about these two points:

  1. When it comes time for college applications, you’ll want a detailed record of all your accomplishments to date. These accomplishments can help you present the best version of yourself to college admissions boards.

  2. You never want to miss a deadline. From registration deadlines to scholarship application deadlines, a missed deadline can ultimately keep you from attending the college you want.

Now it’s time to get organized. You’ll want to set up two systems of organization: one for paper materials and one for digital materials.

Paper Materials

If this were 1988, your paper materials section would be huge. But these days, you’ll find you won’t have a lot of paper records to categorize.

Most likely the majority of these materials will be mail, flyers, and applications. And of course you’ll want to keep any lists that you’ve created here.

Your organization system doesn’t have to be complicated; it can be a simple cardboard box or a couple folders in a file cabinet. The important part is that you put everything important in this filing system and that you remember where you put it.

Digital Materials

The majority of material associated with your college search and the application process will be stored digitally. As this mass of information piles up, you’ll want to ensure you can keep track of all of your emails, text documents, web pages, and statistics.

Some tips to keep you organized:

  • Get acquainted with your email’s filing capabilities. Set up folders for different types of emails and be diligent about sorting them. This will save you a lot of time in the long run.
  • When you send emails, think about CC’ing your parents. They might remember a deadline that you forget and it will make them feel important.
  • Keep your desktop neat. Set up a filing system for all of your text documents, web pages, and applications.
  • Bookmark webpages (like Campus Explorer) you know you’ll use again and organize these bookmarks by school, region, or type.
  • Make a list of all the usernames and passwords you’ve compiled so far. Some of these passwords are going to be a pain – they’ll have to include numbers or uppercase letters or ampersands (&) or something – so it’s unlikely you’ll remember them all.
  • Back up your important files. Trust us, you don’t want to have to do all of this again. Once per lifetime is quite enough.

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Sophomore Year: Summer, Step 1: College Finances: Plan With Your Family Sophomore Year: Summer, Step 2: Summer Jobs Build Credentials and Your Network Sophomore Year: Summer, Step 3: Summer Strategy: Register for the SAT and ACT Te... Sophomore Year: Summer, Step 4: Sophomores: Visit College Campuses This Summer Junior Year: Fall, Step 1: Start Junior Year By Taking the PSAT-NMSQT Test Junior Year: Fall, Step 2: Organize College Planning Strategies With a Counselor Junior Year: Fall, Step 3: Explore Colleges By Region, Size and Specialty Junior Year: Fall, Step 4: Research College Costs and Tuition at Prospective Col... Junior Year: Fall, Step 5: Narrow Your College List: Select 10 to 20 Schools Junior Year: Fall, Step 6: Develop a System for Your College Documents Junior Year: Fall, Step 7: Choose a New Extracurricular Activity for Junior Year Junior Year: Winter, Step 1: Study Hard: Junior Year Grades are Essential Junior Year: Winter, Step 2: Avoid SAT and ACT Disasters: Make Your Test Prep Pl... Junior Year: Winter, Step 3: Juniors: Take Your Extracurricular Activities Up a ... Junior Year: Winter, Step 4: Get Scholarships: Start Your Search Junior Year Junior Year: Winter, Step 5: Attend College Fairs: Compare Schools and Refine Yo... Junior Year: Spring, Step 1: Dominate the SAT or ACT Junior Year: Spring, Step 2: Beat the Letter of Recommendation Rush Junior Year: Spring, Step 3: Educate Yourself About College Admissions Requireme... Junior Year: Spring, Step 4: Get to Know Colleges: Schedule Visits and Interview... Junior Year: Spring, Step 5: Impress College Admissions: Build a Strong Senior S... Junior Year: Spring, Step 6: Juniors: Make the Most of Your Summer Junior Year: Spring, Step 7: Know the Facts About AP Tests Before Test Day Junior Year: Summer, Step 1: Use Summer School to Get Ahead With College Prep Junior Year: Summer, Step 2: Improve Your Resume: Get a Summer Job Junior Year: Summer, Step 3: Begin Practicing Your College Essay-Writing Skills Junior Year: Summer, Step 4: SAT and ACT Test Season: Are You Prepared? Junior Year: Summer, Step 5: Research Financial Aid and Develop Your Plan Junior Year: Summer, Step 6: Summer Project: Visit College Campuses

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