Hello College Mindset Families,
I am sure your inbox is flooded with companies telling you what they are doing to keep customers safe in light of the COVID-19 or Coronavirus pandemic. I am writing to extend my support to all College Mindset families since school and college closings are more than likely affecting your college process.
Remember that while many colleges are closing, as of now, most are remaining opening. This article from Inside Higher Ed takes a look at the decision process colleges are going through. Either way, the Coronavirus is disruptive for all of us.
As with any part of the college process (and life), I want to encourage you to focus on what you have control over. Yes, you may be canceling your spring break college visits, postponing an international trip, or disappointed that you can’t compete in a national competition- but it is going to be OK.
Here are some general tips, resources, and proactive things you can focus on as we face this time of uncertainty.
General Resources For Updates
CNN has a running list of colleges canceling classes.
NACAC has a list of college fair cancellations.
Information on SAT cancellations can be found here and individual site cancellations here.
Updates on colleges that have canceled admissions events and campus visits can be found here and here.
For high school seniors, final admissions decisions will be delivered over the next few weeks, and you are probably already anxious about determining your future. Read through the College Mindset blog post, 5 Steps To Making Your Final Decision. Since attending admitted student events may no longer be an option for you, I encourage you to focus on the following:
Review your supplemental essay, especially the “why this college” essay. Remember what your thoughts were when you wrote it.
Take virtual tours of campus, through sites such as You Visit or watch videos through Campus Reel. Make sure you also do online research about the town where the college is located.
Join admitted student online groups, so you can get to know future classmates.
Trust your gut. You have learned so much about yourself through this process and trust which college feels like it will provide you with a fulfilling and successful college experience.
For high school juniors, spring is a busy time for your college process. Here are some things you can focus on, as this COVID-19 continues to evolve.
If your campus visits are being canceled or postponed, do not plan on stopping by. If a school has canceled an event, they are doing so to protect their community, and you need to respect that. Call the admissions office to figure out your options.
Do not worry about demonstrating interest in a college at this point and time. I will be adding a video to the College Mindset YouTube Channel to share ways you can demonstrate interest in a school without visiting- so make sure you subscribe to learn when that is available.
Continue to research colleges by watching virtual tours through sites such as You Visit or watch videos through Campus Reel.
Don’t worry about canceled competitions or other extracurricular activities. Remember that every student is having to cancel plans and change directions. I encourage you to make a list of things that are being canceled due to Coronavirus so you can let colleges know how your plans changed in the additional information section of your application. Remember, you will need to be specific, so you can’t say, “I was planning on getting a job, but was not able to because of the Coronavirus outbreak.” Instead, you would need to say, “I was hired to work at Dunkin’ Donuts in March 2020, but due to the Coronavirus, I was unable to start my job until May.”
Right now, a few standardized testing centers in some states have canceled testing. Continue to prepare for the SAT or ACT as planned. There are always more testing dates.
For all high school students…
If your school is canceled, make sure you turn your focus to other things (again what you have control over). Get ahead on your homework, do some extra credit, and continue preparing for the SAT or ACT, or Advanced Placement exams (if applicable).
Open your Common Application account and familiarize yourself with what a college application looks like.
Continue to research schools through websites such as College Xpress and College Data.
Take a deep breath. If you are feeling stressed about the Coronavirus, talk about it with a trusted adult. The New York Times published the article, 5 Ways to Help Teens Manage the Anxiety About the Coronavirus. The Center for Disease Control also has some good resources about anxiety the COVID-19.
And to all of my college students who are returning early from studying abroad or having to leave campus, you are in my thoughts. My heart is breaking for my college seniors who are left in a place of uncertainty about graduation and other end-of-college events.
Please feel free to reach out to me if you need to brainstorm ideas to keep busy, come up with a Plan B for visits, or vent your frustrations. You can email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.