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Transform Your College Applications In The Last Few Weeks Of Summer

Whether you've spent the last couple of months studying hard, attending athletic camps, and saving the turtles, or you've spent them nurturing an addiction to Hot Pockets, there's still time to prepare for the college application process. Construct an effective strategy for the upcoming year to get the most bang for your buck and ensure your spot on a roster in college.

First, be realistic. While the ship has probably sailed on summer internships, jobs, and camps, there is plenty you can still do to add some oomph to your college applications. Your mid-November self will thank you if you begin by organizing your calendar for deadlines, tests, games, camps, and everything else you're juggling. Once you know what you're up against in the coming months, you'll find it much easier to add more to-dos (without inducing a panic attack later on in the year).

Next, work on your top 10 list. Embrace the dorky wonder that is Excel and lay it all out in a super fly spreadsheet. The pros and cons will start to shine through when you've got location, cost, athletic programs, and everything else laid out in a nice, neat table. Then you'll be able to plan out unofficial visits, the hidden 8th wonder of the world that have few limitations and give you the best chance at engaging with coaches. Create a few groupings based on geography and start planning whirlwind weekend adventures for August: just you, Mom, Dad, and a solid game of iSpy on the vast open road.

In the leftover free time before classes start, prune your social media presences. Take a trip down memory lane and view your posts, pictures, and hashtags through the eyes of a college coach or admissions staff. With 22% of admissions officers checking out Facebook pages and 12% finding things that negatively impacted an applicant's chances of getting in, there's no room for maybes. Are you whipping out these photos to show Grandpa at the reunion? If not, take it down, de-tag, and polish up your profiles.

If you put in the work on and off the field, you will have no problem taking your college applications from basic to bowled-over-brilliant. For more ideas on bulking up your college applications, look here!

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