For many of us, either our teens are already in school or just about to start. Once it begins, we get into the hustle and bustle of our regular routines. We make sure our teens get to school, take them to band or sports practices, and ensure they get their homework done.

Amid our busy schedules, we need to make sure we’re staying on top of college planning.

Here are a few tasks, by grade level, for you what your teen should be focused on now.


  • Decide where you want to apply and find out their application deadlines
  • Obtain letters of recommendations for college applications
  • Start drafting the college essay – experts say you should allow two months to do this
  • Get transcripts and ensure the information is correct – sometimes data error happens


  • Sign up and prepare for standardized testing
  • Start or update an academic resume
  • Identify which majors you want to pursue
  • Schedule campus tours for the colleges you are interested in  (Use your school breaks to visit a campus when they are in session)


  • Talk to the guidance counselor and consider dual enrollment options
  • Keep track of accomplishments, awards, and recognitions to help prepare for college applications
  • Visit colleges during school breaks to start getting an idea of the type of college you want to attend


  • Start identifying careers of interest
  • Keep track of any accomplishments, awards, and recognition – you will need this for your college application
  • Set and keep good study habits

Act on these tasks to make sure that college planning doesn’t get lost in the craziness of everyday life. Your teen’s high school years will come to an end before you know it. Check out our free resources page for campus tour guides.

College planning is tough when you go it alone. It’s much better when you can do it with friends. You provide your house and friends and we will bring food and drink and talk about college planning. Interested in learning more? Contact us at