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How Early Should You Start Thinking About College?

hi gang I'm back for another week of

demystifying college admissions my name

is Dakota Eddie on behalf of Veritas

prep today I'll be answering your

questions on the fly about college

admissions so let's see what you have

for me this week alright so this week we

have another great question it's I'm a

sophomore and I'm currently on the

basketball team in my high school I

don't really enjoy playing anymore and I

would like to try out indoor track would

me quitting basketball and switching to

another sport hurt my application at all

and if so how much so this seems to just

be a general question about and it just

doesn't have to be basketball on track

could really be anything committing to

something for a couple of years and then

switching to something else essentially

quitting one particular thing so that's

not going to be something that hurts

your application colleges know that

you're in high school and that you don't

know what you want to do with the rest

of your life including playing

basketball sports other extracurriculars

it's absolutely ok if you participate in

more than one thing and you don't have

to sustain one activity for all four

years where it can things that can start

to hurt you if this is something you're

considering on a larger scale or when

you pick up something and quit after

every you know six months and you kind

of have a list of 12 things that you've

done in high school and each thing

you've only done for a semester beyond

that really there isn't going to be a

level that we're you know switching from

one thing to another especially if these

are two things that you're doing for two

years essentially it's not going to hurt

your application in any way so best of

luck trying out for the track team so we

have another great question which is

about being a freshman in high school

where one of your teachers mentioned

that you should already be thinking

about college how soon should I start

really thinking about what colleges I

want to go to so this is a broader

question sort of about when is it

appropriate to start thinking about

college specifically what college you

want to go to you might be thinking

about your sophomores and even your

junior year so maybe the end of your

sophomore year and make any of your

junior you know you really start coming

up with an actual list

but in terms of broader like thinking

about college that is definitely

something that you should be doing as a

freshman and when I say thinking about

college what are some things that you

can start doing as a freshman well first

of all I'm sort of starting to build up

your extracurriculars and sort of

activities list this is something that

will be looked at later so if you just

think about it when you're a junior a

senior when you actually have your

college lists or starting to develop

your college list then it's kind of too

late to just say like oh let me you know

do some extracurricular activities this

is really something that you want to be

starting from freshman year also a

freshman year especially maybe even as

you get into your second semester of

your freshman year which I guess that

you're in now you might want to start

thinking about your career options in

your future again this is not something

that is going to be set in stone or that

you have to commit to but if you just

start thinking about the things that you

like and don't like and I think is that

you value that can help you come up with

your College list for next year or the

year after and our last question this

week is about a match and reach and sort

of I guess

to an extent safety schools how can I

tell if a school is a match school or a

reach school I'm applying to some

schools I think I'm a good fit for but

my friends all think that of them as

reach schools this is a question that

really is sort of subjective there is no

cutoff line for whether something is a

reach school or match school on a

broader level what these are meant to be

are categories so that you can make sure

that you get into some schools but that

you're also applying yourself and that

you so those are the reach schools and

that you also have some schools that

you're pretty sure that you're going to

get into no matter what your match

schools are going to be schools kind of

in the middle where you are a good fit

for academically and/or are a little bit

above that above that fit so that you're

you're fairly certain that these are

good fit for you and a good match so

just so that I can sort of demonstrate

what this might be most of what you're

going to be basing this list off is your

stats so a lot of other parts of your

application are totally subjective and

that's why I say that this is subjective

so stats wise I mean like your GPA

and your SAT or a CT scores and for

undergrad pretty much everyone has the

same year you know a number of years of

work experience and school experience

though that's also kind of a non-issue

here so imagine that you have a school

here and this school's main stats are

for SAT scores their average SAT scores

or their middle range is from all right

so that's that's the schools range for

SAT scores and their GPA range is this

hmm yeah let's say that

so this is the school and you're kind of

trying to figure out whether this is a

reach school or a match school and I

don't know what your actual stats are so

I'm completely making this up

I imagine that your stats just in these

two categories are that your SAT scores

are let's say 23 and your GPA is 38.3 so

in this case you obviously kind of lie

within the range of this particular

school and that's mostly what we are

going to be basing this reach match list

on as well as safety because you're in

the higher end of their SAT range and

you have you know could SAT scores for

this particular school and that's

usually something that fits into the

category of match right so you're on the

higher end of their range which is a

good thing and so there are so many

students in the class maybe even 70% of

their students that would have cheap SAT

scores below you GPA wise if you just

looked at the GPA alone this may be

considered a match ish or reach school

so you would be on the lowest end of

their GPA range

and this is not necessarily the lowest

GPA score they have sometimes this is a

middle 80% or middle 75% range so in

this case given your two scores it seems

like you you would probably fit smack in

the middle of their ranges overall so

this would probably be a good match

school for you however you have other I

mean college applications one thing I

really want Express is that it's a

holistic process this is just giving you

a baseline to sort of make your

decisions on where you want to apply to

to make sure that you have a broad range

of schools you're applying to

but don't forget of course your

extracurricular activities your

interview if you have one and your

essays and your recommendations because

those are supremely important and

depending on which schools you apply to

those can sometimes even outweigh some

of these things so best of luck but I

hope that that helps you understand a

little bit more about reach and match

alright thank you for joining me for

another great week I really enjoyed your

questions this week if you have more

questions for us to consider and explore

next week make sure that you post them

right under my video in the comment

section or if you want you can tweet at

us at Veritas prep if you want you can

also sign up for one of our free college

workshops and they're gonna be on

Veritas prep comm slash college last

application resources and there I go

into a variety of topics in much deeper

length about college admissions and lots

of factors that you probably didn't even

know that you were wondering about so

again I'm Dakota Eddie on behalf of

Veritas prep signing off and I will see

you guys next week