While applying to college can be overwhelming, it should also be fun. You have the opportunity to learn about yourself and some fantastic schools in the weeks/months ahead.
No matter where you apply, here’s some advice from UNC Asheville’s Office of Admission & Financial Aid to help you through the process:
- First, take a deep breath. Reflect on what you want from your experience. What are the must-haves that will help you thrive?
- Be open to different types of institutions and get to know them. Visit (in-person or virtually), connect with your admission counselor (we’re here to help), and talk to students and faculty.
- Do your research, but don’t obsess. Not every thought or conversation you have during your senior year should be about applying to college.
- Schedule regular check-ins with the mentors and family members who may be helping you with the process.
- Be mindful of deadlines (admission & financial aid), and check your email.
Tips for Crafting a Stellar Application to UNC Asheville (and any university)
Be yourself, not who you think colleges want you to be. While your coursework, grades and other academic metrics factor strongly into our review, we are excited to get to know you and who you might be in our communities. Use any required essays or personal statements as an opportunity to share insight into who you are and what you care about.
Give yourself time to represent yourself fully in the application. A rushed application is a missed opportunity.
Don’t undervalue your experiences outside of school. Are you a club president? A scholar-athlete? An all-state musician? Great! We also want to know if you work, help your younger siblings after school, or have interesting hobbies. Our campuses are made better every year by who our students are, their experiences and what they value.
There have been so many changes related to the pandemic, but the nearly Universal move to test-optional admission has been a game-changer for many students. COVID has also forced colleges and universities to think about the ways we engage with students. While we are excited to be out and visiting students again, virtual offerings will (and should) be sticking around for years to come.
Admission counselors understand that your available classes, activities and plans have been impacted by the last 18 months. We’ve felt similar impacts on our lives too. Know that we approach each application thoughtfully with an eye toward granting grace and flexibility. We are all figuring out the path forward together.
Colleges and universities continue to offer a range of in-person and virtual options to get to know us and our communities. Your college experience will be informed by more than your intended major. Visiting a campus, attending an open house, and-or talking to students and professors are great ways to understand if that school is the right place for you.
If you can’t visit, take a virtual tour, connect with your admission counselor, log onto faculty and student Q&As, and follow us on social media. We want to help you get to know us wherever you are. As to when, if you’re a senior or prospective transfer student, there’s no time like the present!
Students and families should know that financial aid and scholarships should be researched as part of the college search process. Ask questions about cost of attendance, need-based aid, and scholarships.
Use the Net Price Calculators (financial aid estimators) for the schools you are considering as a jumping off point to inform yourselves and conversations with financial aid counselors. Schools will have different deadlines and different requirements so keep track of those and have your required supporting documents ready. Finally, it can be difficult, but have conversations about what the family can afford sooner rather than later to avoid disappointment and overcommitting.