5 Things Admissions Counselors Want You to Know

5 Things Admissions Counselors Want You to Know

  • by
  • Nov 03, 2020
black male sitting behind computer

Looking for advice about applying to college? Admissions counselors at colleges and universities across the Pacific Northwest have some tips for you!

Read and follow the directions.

Colleges ask for information in specific ways because it helps them review the thousands of applications they receive. If you don’t understand an instruction on the application, ask!

Meet the deadlines.

What’s that saying? If you’re early, you’re on time. If you’re on time, you’re late. If you’re late, don’t even bother showing up. Make sure you know when the application deadlines are, and get all of your materials in prior to the deadline. This includes financial aid and scholarship deadlines.

Do your research.

Be ready to talk about why the colleges you are interested in are a good fit for you. Learn what you need to do to apply to the colleges and follow through to make sure everything reaches them in time.

Ask for help.

School counselors, GEAR UP advisors, ASPIRE mentors and college admissions staff are on your side and available to help, answer questions, etc. If you don’t know something, ask! Visit your college and career center, school counseling office, or GEAR UP advisor regularly. Look at admissions websites for information on who is your assigned admissions representative. They’ll all be great resources for you throughout your college search!

Apply to more than one school.

Don't put all your eggs in one basket.* There are many colleges that will be a good fit for you! Apply to schools you will be excited to attend in the fall - 4 to 6 is a recommended number. See your counselor for more information.

*The exception, of course, is if you are applying Early Decision (ED). Even then, be prepared with additional good-fit colleges that you can apply to if you are not admitted in the ED round.



This is a guest post with the Pacific Northwest Association for College Admission Counseling (PNACAC). Their goal is that every student in the Pacific Northwest has access to informed, engaged, and ethical college admission counseling professionals.

Originally published November 2018.