You’ve finished your college applications. Congratulations! There’s at least one more step though: Following up with the college. Here’s why it’s so important to follow up after you submit an application.
Confirm They Got the Application
The most important reason is to confirm they received it. Accidents and errors happen after you submit an application, even when you send it in electronically. Things get lost. Websites experience problems. It’s best to double-check with the school that they got everything you sent in. This could include the application, essay, letters of recommendation, and more.
In the same vein, this is why it’s a good idea to send in your college applications well ahead of the deadline. Accidents happen: your internet may go out, the college’s submission website may go down. Point is, something might prevent your app from making it in. In addition to reducing stress, it also gives you time to check in to ensure they actually received your paperwork. If you’re missing parts of your application at the deadline, it can result in a decline.
Confirm With The College Received Everything
You’ll also want to confirm that they received every aspect of the application, not just what you personally sent in. Your FAFSA information is one, but you also want to be sure they received your official transcripts, school reports, SAT or ACT scores, SAT Subject Test scores if you took them, and a mid-year report if required.
In some cases, your college may also request that the teacher (or other professionals) who is writing a letter of recommendation for you send it directly to the school. You’ll want to follow up with any teachers who are writing the letters as well as your college to confirm that they were sent and received. Don’t forget to send a thank-you note to your teachers who wrote your recommendations too!
And Don’t Forget a Thank You Note After an Interview
If your college requires or requests an interview as part of your college application, don’t forget about the thank you note! You should send one of these a few days after your meeting with the school representative, thanking them for their time and any impressions you had from the interview.
Handwriting these notes can be valuable, as they show the interviewer you put time and care into it. You’ll want to make it personalized to your meeting with them while also expressing your further interest in the college. In cases where you can’t handwrite a note, an email should do fine.
Sending in your college applications is certainly a cause for celebration, but don’t forget to follow up! Whether it’s checking in after sending in the application itself, making sure the college received everything they need or sending a thank you note, it can go a long way in helping you earn an acceptance letter from the college.
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