College: When Should You Start Preparing?

Academics

Although this topic is based on what your parents might be thinking, remember, college is about what you want to ultimately do. Do you think childhood is a time to have fun and do adventurous things while you're still young? Or do you think childhood is a time to prepare for the future, ensuring a stable future? It all lands on colleges at the end. There are some top high schools that you have to try out to get into, but colleges could determine if you'll land a $40,000 job or a $100,000 job. A good college lands you a good bachelors degree, masters, and eventually doctor. But we don't need to go into that right now. Of course, all of us aim high for the Ivy Leagues or top colleges in your state, but if you don't prepare at all, there's a high chance you won't get in. Preparing is key, but is there such thing as starting too early?

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In your high school years, you'll eventually take the SAT and ACT. Those scores are extremely important because low scores often guarantee low acceptance rates. Studying when you're still in junior high can slowly but effectively prepare you for the future tests, and by purchasing SAT books or taking courses online can give you the experience that some people lack when taking it. Writing that resume tackles on many problems as well, and that isn't something you can really practice because your life isn't laid out yet. Yet, researching colleges and majors at a young age can prove effective.

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If you don't want to rush your life, go ahead, but you might want to consider this. Drafting your plan early on can help you in the future, knowing what you excel at and knowing what isn't your cup of tea. If you know you're not good at science and math, yet you really want to go to medical school, at a young age, you should prepare to improve your skills. Improving your skills early on can make you better prepared. Having those skills ready and prepared could effectively help you in the future.

Some people may call you nerds, but I myself research colleges often. Knowing what colleges you can hopefully achieve and having a goal in life set out, it helps you a lot. The colleges with 7% acceptance rates may be looking at certain things in people, and at a young age, preparing for those could be helpful. If you know you're destined to be a doctor, start researching those requirement skills you need to master.

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One helpful thing that I learned from preparing for college early on is definitely the essays. There are thousands of books out there and hundreds online of successful college applications that got them into Ivy Leagues such as Princeton and Yale, and reading them significantly helped me with my writing skills and knowing what going above and beyond meant. The essays themselves are interesting because learning the lives of people who got into such difficult schools is pretty interesting, you know?

Image result for college essaysNow, I'm not saying you have to do this. I also believe that childhood should be a time of fun, a time to do things you can't do when you're 18 or 21. You aren't expected to have the maturity level of a 21-year-old, you aren't expected to get the same SAT score as a junior, etc. Kids aren't fully developed yet, and you should continue to grow gradually because growing up all at once in a rush can be a bit overwhelming. Live life, but prepare for some academics, right?

Otherwise, you shouldn't be scared if you can't get a perfect score on the SAT when you aren't even close to taking it and don't stress about it too much. Many people have gotten by smoothly without planning as much, and so can you!

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Joyce Li

Heyo! I'm Joyce and I enjoy writing about academics, culture, and in my free time I enjoy playing volleyball and fangirling over Bangtan Boys! :D