Advice to Get You Through Junior Year

By Lucy Kaminsky

Volume 67, Issue I

Remember that it’s not actually as bad as you think it is. Junior year seems like a breeze when you’re trying to write sixteen supplements and figure out Naviance, I promise.

Take time to do stuff you actually like. Who cares if you’re acing AP Chem and U.S. if you feel drained and exhausted?

It’s not worth it. Whatever it is—yoga, basketball, volunteering at the SPCA— make sure you’re doing stuff that makes you happy.

Take the SAT/ACTs as few times as possible and as early as possible. You will thank yourself later when you’re not taking the SAT a week after your APs. Understand that so many schools are test optional and that if you do well once or twice, there’s no need to strain yourself for a few extra points.

Tutors aren’t for everyone. Take it from someone who used one, they’re not as great as they seem. A few review books can be really valuable. Take a few practice tests and see if you really need to spend the money on a tutor. If you do, remember that you can do a few math sessions if you’re stronger in English. They will try to get you to spend as much money as possible, and you don’t need to.

Don’t buy a thousand review books you won’t use. Buy more as you complete them.
Sleeping more almost guarantees better

grades and scores. Go to bed early. When you visit schools, see how you feel on campus. Sometimes you just know.
Info sessions can be repetitive. It’s OK to just do the tour after the first few. Don’t compare your grades, social life, or scores to other people. It will inevitably make you feel terrible.
When visiting a school, talk to as many people as possible. Ask questions. Who cares if you seem weird? You will never see them again.
Cultivate friendships that make you happy and distance yourself from those that don’t. People change and that is OK. School is hard enough without the strain of difficult friendships.
You don’t need to get into the best school you can. Another way to put this: just because you can kill yourself getting into Binghamton/Duke/Cornell/NYU/Fairfield doesn’t mean you should.
Go into the college process with this in mind: there is no perfect school for you. There are dozens. You will end up at one.
Be really, really nice to your parents. Who is going to pay for college, anyway?
Utilize the internet. There’s a reason that we have our laptops. Look up outlines, online flashcards, and videos.
It’s cool to be smart. And kind. Anyone that tells you otherwise is untrue.

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