High School Student Checklist

female studentAre you a college-bound high school student? Follow our checklist to stay on top of important deadlines and make preparing for college as easy as possible.

Freshman and Sophomore Year

  • Keep on top of your schoolwork. Your grades are very important, even early on in high school.
  • Get involved in different groups at your school. Keep track of all the different activities you participate in and the leadership roles you may take.
  • Volunteer after school and on the weekends.
  • Start saving for college. Put a few dollars into a savings account each week and it will add up quickly.
  • Make a list of schools you are interested in and research them. Request information from some of the most interesting schools.
  • Research different majors you may want to study.
  • Talk to your family, friends, teachers and counselors about what your goals are for the future.

Junior Year


  • Meet with your guidance counselor to make sure you are on track for college.
  • Make a list of what is important to you while looking for a college.
  • Take practice ACT and SAT tests.
  • Research schools that you may be interested in and make sure they meet your criteria.
  • Find out when your Heidelberg representative is visiting your high school and meet with him/her.
  • Attend as many college fairs as possible.
  • Visit college websites and take virtual tours of campus.



  • Take the ACT or SAT.
  • Continue to visit different colleges.
  • Finalize your senior classes with your counselor. Take challenging classes, colleges look at the difficulty of your courses as well as grades when making decisions.
  • Apply for summer jobs in your area and save some of the money you make for college.


Senior Year


  • Write important dates down so you do not miss any deadlines.
  • Meet with your guidance counselor to go over college plans and make sure your classes meet the standards of your college goals.
  • Sign up for the ACT or SAT.


  • Find out when your Heidelberg admission counselor is visiting your high school and meet with him/her.
  • Ask teachers, high school counselors, employers and others for letters of recommendation for your college and scholarship applications. Give them at least a two week notice.
  • Finalize your college application essay. Have a teacher look it over and give pointers.Heidelberg H
  • Make a list of scholarships in your community for which you wish to apply. Ask your guidance counselor, your employer, your coaches and check with any organizations in which you, your parents or grandparents may be involved if there are any scholarships available. You can also apply for scholarships at www.fastweb.com and https://www.scholarships.com.


  • Finalize the list of colleges to which you wish to apply.
  • Submit your applications for any scholarships you may be eligible for.
  • Re-take the ACT or SAT if you feel you can improve your score.
  • If your school has a Financial Aid Planning night, plan to attend. Staff will help you learn more about the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), local scholarships and more.
  • Check out Heidelberg's Cash Course to learn even more about financial aid.


  • Finish submitting your college applications. Many guidance counselors kindly ask that you have all your applications submitted by Thanksgiving. This gives them a chance to send in all the necessary forms.
  • Receive Heidelberg's admission decision about two weeks after your complete your application and all necessary materials have been submitted.
  • Make a file on each school you applied to with a copy of your application, essay, and letters of recommendation you may have sent and all materials they have given you.
  • If you are a male over 17, make sure you are registered with the Selective Service to be eligible for any federal or state financial aid.


  • Register for your PINs to enable you to apply for financial aid. This PIN serves as your electronic signature. Both the student and a parent will need to obtain a PIN.
  • Continue to apply for different scholarships and grants. Make sure you check out www.fastweb.com and https://www.scholarships.com.
  • Enjoy a relaxing Winter Break.



  • Have your taxes done if you haven't already.
  • Submit your completed FAFSA online if you haven't already. Valentine's Day (February 14) is a good target date to have your FAFSA completed.
  • Schedule follow-up visits to your top three schools that have offered you admission. Make sure to schedule an appointment with each school's financial aid office. Consider an overnight visit to get a real feel for the school and student life.
  • Your Student Aid Report will arrive within four weeks of submitting your FAFSA.


  • The sooner you submit your FAFSA, the sooner you will receive financial aid award letters. They will begin arriving now.
  • Compare your top three schools and prepare to make your final decision.
  • Apply for a summer job and save some of the money for college.


  • Decide what college you will be attending. Remember to consider all factors, including academic offerings, student experience and cost. Don't underestimate what feels like the best fit!
  • Submit your enrollment fee as soon as you make your decision.
  • Notify the schools you will not be attending.
  • Submit your Financial Aid award acceptance form.




  • Receive housing information.
  • Contact your roommate and decide who will bring what things. 
  • Buy items for your dorm room.


  • Make sure you have completed the necessary forms to secure any student loans you will take.
  • Buy last minute items for your dorm and buy school supplies. Check out your bookstore website and see what books you will need for your classes.
  • Welcome to college!