Saturday, February 18, 2017

College Preparation - After High School

You did it, you graduated! Yay, finally after all those years of homework, torture, tension and stress filled exam weeks, you are finally freeeeeeeeeeeeeeee(and lots more ee's).
You're done with your graduation, have received your certificates , passed your finals and now you want to catch up on all the hours of sleep you missed.
But what about college?
Ah, there's lots of time for that! I need SLEEP!
Yes you do need sleep, but the longer you put off your college applications and preparations the harder it's going to get.
Get these things out of the way before Summer so you can enjoy your summer lounging under the Sun on the Beaches of Hawaii (or in the arms of your comfy bed at home - whatever it is you do in summer.)
The sooner they are done the lesser the tension. Trust me, last minute things never work out. You'll end up being frustrated and tensed and things will get messed up more.
So Dearie, listen to me and get preparing. All of the below mentioned steps won't even take  you a month if done on time and if done late, it can cost you your first semester (like it did mine.)
So don’t fall into the temptation of your bed (yet) and GET TO WORK!

Remember the file you made last year with brochures and flyers from all your choice of colleges? (What file are you talking about? Check out this post) It's time to get that out now and make a mess of your table or bed.

Explore colleges: 

If you've ever had the wanderlust, this will be your first step. No kidding. Explore, explore and explore. There are lots of colleges in Kuwait and in the world, but only ONE is the BEST one for you. How would you know which one is the best one if you don’t go out and take a look? Get out of the shell you've been in throughout High School and get travelling. This could be your first Adventure (kind of).
Check out all the facilities, programs, clubs and activities the colleges offer. If you haven't taken the campus tours in the previous year, it's time to do it now! American University in Kuwait has a special request form on their webpage for booking these kinds of tours. Make use of that. Or if you're interested in other colleges like GUST, ACM etc just shoot them an Email with 'Campus Tour" in the subject box.
If you’ve already decided on your best college, move on to the next step -

Take or Retake your exams :

 If you have already taken the placement tests or any  other  exams like SAT, ACT, TOEFL, IELTS, GMAT or your specific college placement tests  and are not happy with the results then retake them; you have this option then exploit it. Retake it until you're satisfied with the results (not more than thrice though).
And if you haven't taken any exams yet, then DO IT NOW! What are you waiting for? There are many useful websites that offer lots of past papers and sample papers for practice.
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Join the Fun!

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Recommendation letters :
 You had asked few of your favorite teachers to write recommendation letters for you in junior year. (Right?)Don't expect them to sing your praises in those recommendation letters, they will be very professional and you'll hardly find what you're probably looking for but these are what the colleges want so that's alright.
Now is the time collect the recommendation letters from the teachers, managers and other people you've asked them from.
You actually don’t need more than 3 letters, but if you've asked for more, then that’s alright. Choose the ones that you feel highlight your best abilities and skills and attach them to your application which brings us to the next step.

Application Letter :

 Get those letter drafts you had made in the last year from the deep recesses of your drawers, books or cupboards (wherever you threw them – mine was in my wardrobe under my shirts *eye roll* no idea how it got there.)
When you visited the colleges, You might have received lots of brochures on your trip. Look for the questions posed for the essay and using your rough draft as a guide, TYPE out your Application Essay. Never, ever write it,  Just type. You're going to be an adult, get professional. Because you're less busy now than in the summer,(you got to enjoy the beaches)  take the time to write your application essay now, rather than in the summer.
Also, fill out the important details and gather your documents.

Get your certificates attested-

 This is THE most important step of all. If you studied in any high school that wasn’t a government one or an Arabic one, you CAN'T skip this step. Without attested documents, you don't get an equivalency certificate and without that…. Well, need I say more?
The process is different for every school but since I studied in an Indian school, I had to get my documents attested by the Indian Embassy.
Remember, you only need to attest your 10th grade and your 12th-grade mark sheet if you're planning to study in Kuwait, else if you're going abroad, get your Transfer Certificate from school attested too.
Subscribers get special help on the whole process of Certificate Attestation on the FaceBook group
Get your equivalency certificate -

 Now this one doesn't take that long, the maximum number of trips I took were 5. No kidding.  After you're done with the attestation, go to the Ministry of Private Education in Salmiya along with your attested documents. Get it signed, stamped and collect your equivalency certificate.
 If you decide to attest your documents in the summer and get your equivalency then it's going to take you really long as everyone else does it then. Therefore, it's better to get this over with earlier so you don’t have to wait much.
Want to know how to get your Equivalency certificate? Subscribe now to the Newsletter and get help on the FB Group.
PRO TIP : Before submitting your documents to the university or college, make sure to have at least 10 copies of all your attested certificates and your documents. Trust me, you're going to need them and this will save you a load of time and money (and petrol).


 Keep an eye on application deadlines. Write them down everywhere; planner, calendar, on the application form in pencil, on the fridge; EVERYWHERE! It’s always better to submit early,  so you still have time to fix any errors or problems that arise (trust me they always do) but if you can’t, last-minute is always better than late.

Complete the scholarship applications:

 If you decide to apply for scholarships, then fill out the form and write a separate letter with the reasons why you want to receive the scholarship – it's also a smart idea to get your recommendation writers to include this in their letters.
Get a list of scholarships provided in Kuwait in the AC Resource Library by subscribing to the Newsletter

Attach Documents :

 Look into the admission brochures and mark the documents needed. Gather all of them – your certificates, Civil ID, passport copy, equivalency, application essay and recommendation letters and attach them to your application form and submit them to your university of choice.

Submit your applications :

 Check that everything is right, then double check again.  Now, when all that is done, take a deep breath and submit your documents and application to the university or organization and wait. That's all that’s left to do.

Always remember, be patient. No matter what happens or how it happens, it happens due to the will of Allah. He is your Creator- He knows you, what's best for you. Trust Him.
Do your best and leave the rest on Him. There's nothing else you can do, it is all in His hands. Often there might be times when something might happen that you don't agree with or something that isn't according to your plans, but that’s okay because all's well that ends well.
Trust Allah, be patient and Strong Willed and you'll see everything becoming easy for you.
Keep praying, always.

I hope this guide helps you and makes things easy for you. May Allah make you successful in your endeavours and make your affairs easy for you!

Check out the next post in this series - How to prepare for College in Summer!

 Check out the previous post in this series - How to prepare for college during 
High School.

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