We had a hard time getting D19 to engage with the process at the beginning, which was a bit of a surprise because she was always super communicative and open and a really good student - I expected her to be excited for it all. Wrong. I think it felt really overwhelming. One thing that helped was a long weekend to visit a shmorgishborg of schools, and we emphasized that this is the stage that schools are trying to get you to apply. They’re trying to give you the pitch, woo you, get you excited about them. They want to impress you! I think that took some of the pressure off at the beginning. And sometimes it helps just to get started and try to think of the process as a series of smaller steps, because the whole can feel too intimidating.
Going through this process with S22 has been much smoother, because his sister paved the way and landed in a great spot for her. But while he’s been much more willing to engage in this process, last week- our first trip to visit schools- we could see the pressure setting in. And we reminded him of the same thing - in this stage, THEY want YOU! Enjoy it! Now’s the time to listen to their pitch of why they want you to consider them. And he relaxed and totally opened up about what he liked and didn’t like and started figuring out (or at least voicing it) what a fit for him looks like. (But hopefully not too relaxed as he has the SATs this Saturday!)