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College Application: Tips for Improving Your Extracurriculars

Many high schoolers aspire to enter the halls of higher education, but not everyone will be fortunate or skilled enough to make it to the campus of their choice. According to experts, most colleges in the United States accept applicants, with acceptance rates of approximately 66 percent.

The most exclusive colleges in the country, such as the Ivy Leagues, have vastly higher standards and consequently have acceptance rates in the single digits.

If you want to ensure colleges look at your application more favorably, you will need to improve your extracurricular activities. These non-academic endeavors are some of the most important metrics colleges look at and its crucial you enhance them.

Below are some tips on how you can catch the eye of colleges through great extracurriculars.

  1. Internships

walking along the school hall
Many high schoolers look for internships to increase their chances of acceptance.

Colleges value students with drive, ambition and proactiveness. To this end, they will greatly appreciate any form of internship in your application. Internships help expose you to your probably future careers and the closer your internship is to your college course, the better. This shows colleges that you are serious at what you want to be and you are skilled enough to get accepted into a professional working environment.

Securing internships can be difficult by themselves. For one thing, many companies only accept internships in limited numbers and for only a few months. They can be very stressful and demanding. But interning at a young age for a large firm or successful business will definitely get your foot in the door of your preferred college.

  1. Sports

Many students aren’t that interested in pursuing their academics or have a hard time with their studies. For these more physically inclined individuals, the best method for getting into college is by joining a sports team. There are ample opportunities in high school for you to join a sports team you like.

Popular options for getting into college include football, basketball, swimming and the like. More niche sports, such as rowing, wall climbing and fencing are less likely to be noticed by colleges, but they are still welcome additions to your application. Even high school cheerleaders can look to being favorably viewed by the campus of their choice.

  1. Leadership Positions

students reviewing
Student leadership can be an option for non-academically inclined students.

Colleges also like applicants who have truly proven themselves by taking on leadership positions. There are plenty of methods you can explore to ensure your application has a robust leadership listing.

You can always start by trying your hand at student governance. If you have the charisma, the drive and the confidence, becoming student body president or holding a position in the student government can greatly increase your application’s esteem.

You can also try to spearhead initiatives and projects in your school or local community. These can be anything like food drives, charity efforts or even community events. These credentials show your ability to be a leader and organizational talents.

  1. Work Experience

Employment is often used a ways to gage many things about applicants. Colleges can see it as a way to display hard work, determination, drive and even skill.

According to experts, approximately one-third of the country’s high school students already hold down jobs, whether out of practicality or just for the experience. There are lots of reasons a high schooler may want a job such as saving up for any large spending. But they can also get you into the college of your choice.

Be sure to tailor fit your work experience to what you want to study in college. For example, if you would like to study architecture, you may want to get a temp job or even an assistant position for an architecture firm. This will show how serious you are with your career trajectory.

  1. Advocacies

planet over profit sign
Photo by Markus Spiske from Pexels

Finally, you can showcase your dedication and skills through your advocacies. Plenty of colleges value students who are not apathetic and have supported their beliefs. There are lots of way you can use your advocacy to boost your application.

You can intern for an organization that works toward your advocacy. Or you can be employed for a summer by the same company working for them. If you want some leadership credentials in your application, you can spearhead many activities like donation drives, fundraising fairs and awareness campaigns.

Getting into college can be challenging, with financial considerations, logistics and academics all being important factors. Adding extracurriculars to your list of considerations may seem overwhelming but these tips will help you craft a great application that can boost your chances of being accepted into the college of your choice.

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