Preparing for college as a 9th grader (Part 2)

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  1. Get a feel for what it’s like to be a college student.

To be successful in college, you should be aware of what you’re getting yourself into as much as possible ahead of time. And, to some extent, the courses you take in high school can prepare you for the college experience. Honors programs, AP classes, and IB (International Baccalaureate) classes are all available in most high schools. While each of these class types vary somewhat, they are all more advanced than the ordinary high school course, and therefore may provide you with a reasonable idea of the work load and level that will be required of you in college.


You may acquaint yourself with the college experience outside of your studies through plain old-fashioned word-of-mouth. Inquire about the transition from high school to college if you have relatives or older friends who are college-aged. What were the most difficult challenges they faced? What were the happiest surprises they received? Having these chats with reliable folks who have just gone through this might help you anticipate and plan for your own college experience far ahead of time.


  1. Experiment with extracurricular activities to see what works best.

It’s not required to start composing your college application materials as a student in high school. You may, however, make certain decisions now that will help you be a better applicant when it comes time to apply to colleges. And your participation in extracurricular activities is a huge part of what makes you a great college candidate.


Being a freshman a few years out of college has the advantage of giving you plenty of time to pursue your interests and hobbies. However, it’s a good idea to keep in mind that you should aim for both breadth and depth in your research. While participating in a variety of extracurricular activities is a great way to explore new things, it’s also crucial to remember that your engagement in extracurriculars indicates your motivation and commitment to college admissions committees. So, in order to demonstrate such dedication, pick at least one thing that you particularly like and can commit to on a regular basis.

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