• On this page are tips, tools and downloads to help plan for life during and after high school. To learn more about the value and benefits of 2-year degree click here and here. To learn more about the value and benefits of a 4-year degree click here and here. For a comparison of the two click here.

Organizing College Applications

  • Below are some options to help students apply to colleges and keep college applications, deadlines and related paperwork organized.The earlier students start, the easier their senior year will be.

    Students are encouraged to apply to 10 colleges based on how well they meet the school's admission requirements. Select 3-4 schools where they easily exceed the admissions requirements, 3-4 schools that they match the admissions requirements, and 3-4 schools where they may only meet 1 admissions requirement.

    Each school should offer the student's major or career interest and be a good fit for the size of school they want to attend. Students are encouraged to tour each school campus to meet the faculty, staff and students while school is in session to get a good feel of the school and what it has to offer. With Covid impacting the country, many schools are hosting virtual college visits.

    Common App: The Common App has 900+ colleges and universities that students can explore and apply to using one application. Check to see if the school you are interested in uses the Common App. Students can apply to up to 20 colleges. The Common App keeps track of deadlines, required documents and fee waiver requests. Students are encouraged to complete essays in a separate document (like Google Docs) and then copy and paste their essay into the Common App to prevent their essay from getting deleted if the App automatically logs you out before you save the document.

    Coalition App: The Coalition App was created specifically to help students with limited financial resources apply to colleges who will help them graduate from college with little or no debt. Students can start using the App in the 9th grade to explore college options, prepare to meet admission requirements and apply to colleges. The App also has a virtual storage Locker for students to keep records of their accomplishments throughout high school in one place. That makes it easier for students to complete applications, write essays, and submit portfolio work (if needed). All the Ivy League schools use the Coalition App.

    College Board College Application Checklist: The College Board has a downloadable/printable checklist for Juniors and Seniors to track up to 4 colleges. Not all colleges have online applications, so this can be a useful tool to keep track of both online and paper applications. You will need to set reminders in a separate device (like your cell phone calendar or clock app) to be reminded of deadlines.

    Other options: Type "college application organizers" into a search engine (like Firefox, Google or DuckDuckGo) or Pinterest and check out the different options. Create a spreadsheet in Google Drive, Open Office or Microsoft Excel.

Native Pathways to College