But I digress. Whichever high-powered political science school you apply to, you will need:
The one thing you should not do is create an organization or program because you think you need one for college admissions. Just like joining all the clubs in school just to show you’re “involved,” admissions officers can see right through this. Showing true leadership—born of passion, not obligation—is what is going to make you a stand-out candidate.
In addition, you need to research all the schools you are going to apply to and make sure each one is a good fit for you. Applying to every school you think is an Ivy simply because they are an Ivy is a recipe for disaster. You will definitely be rejected by some, just because the straight-laced student who fits in at Harvard or Princeton will not fit in at Cornell (the Ivy League ag school) or Brown. Don’t waste your time applying to schools that don’t fit you!
 National Security Language Initiative for Youth (NSLI-Y)
 United States Senate Page
 The Congressional Award is the United States Congress’ award for young Americans.
This answer was first published on Quora on July 18, 2016. Follow me on Quora for more great content!
As The Grinder would say, “But what if you do?” Take Zack as an example. Zack took a trip to Colorado to visit colleges, primarily Colorado College in Colorado Springs. It was summer and he hadn’t really thought about where he wanted to apply, but CC sounded interesting (they have a block schedule, so you only take one class at a time), so he put it on his visit list. He chose not to request an interview because he didn’t know if he wanted to apply.
Early November rolled around and Zack decided, “Sure, I’d like to go to CC.” Because he knew that CC is highly selective and would require a full admissions campaign, he visited the school website to request an alumni interview.
But there were no slots left for interviews in his area! In early November!
The College Interview is an important tool in your admissions toolbox. Remember, the Admissions Committee is trying to get to know you better, to understand what kind of roommate you’ll be, what kind of student in the classroom, what kind of leader on campus. What better way than to sit down with you and have a friendly conversation?
Your interview is often the first time you have a real, adult conversation. I’m not talking about chatting with your boss or your friend’s parents. Talking to teachers doesn’t really cut it. This is like a business interview, one where you’ll want to prepare in advance with some good stories to share that make you look good.
Some common interview questions, and answers:
As you can see, many of these questions are best prepared for ahead of time. You can find other great practice interview questions and suggested answers at About.com. Practice a bit with a parent, teacher or counselor before you go on campus visits. This is actually the best reason to interview at a school you’re not sure you want to apply to. It’s perfect practice, so when you interview when it really counts, you’ll be polished and confident.
Not interviewing is not the end of the world—simply asking for an interview shows interest—but getting in there and making a good impression goes a long way toward getting you some positive buzz around the Admissions committee table. At highly-selective schools, a good interview can be the difference between an acceptance and a spot on the waitlist. Be prepared.
Saturday College Book Club: College Match: A Blueprint for Choosing the Best College for You, by Steven R. Antonoff, PhDRead Now
““Begin at the beginning," the King said, very gravely, "and go on till you come to the end: then stop.” ― Lewis Carroll, Alice in Wonderland
Just how do you begin the college admissions process? By developing a good college list, full of schools that fit you perfectly! College Match: A Blueprint for Choosing the Best School for You is essentially a college-counseling program between two covers. Author Dr. Steven R. Antonoff, a former Dean of Admissions at the University of Denver, has packed his book with quizzes and worksheets that allow high school juniors and seniors to examine their values and self-knowledge to reflect on exactly what they want in a school, narrow their criteria and then compare and contrast schools to add to their college list.
This is a classic. We have based the college-counseling curriculum at our school around Antonoff's College Match.
There is a drought coming; a drought of students pursuing health careers. Statistics show that there will be a shortage of doctors by 2025 and nurses by 2022. Health care support careers, such as physician assistants, nurse practitioners, medical assistants, nursing assistants, technicians of all kinds and health care administrators are predicted to be the fastest growing career group between 2012-2022. (Information from the Mayo Clinic's Future of Health Care Blog)
This is an opportunity for any college student at any level who might find themselves interested in a health care career. If you have the least bit of interest in health care, take more science classes, or try out a health care-related business or assisting class. If you do decide to take a degree in medical assisting, lab technician or other, be sure that your school is appropriately accredited. In my area, there are two schools offering a degree in medical assisting: the local technical college and a for-profit college. Compared with the tech, the for-profit college's MA program is twice as long, costs twice as much and their graduates are not able to take the national Medical Assistant certification test because the for-profit college is not accredited for that program. Be sure to do your research!
Lessa Scherrer is an college admissions consultant who has worked with college-bound students for many years. She is a member of NACAC and WACAC and also teaches ACT Prep, speed-reading, college study skills and college-level writing.
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