family connection

tip: To stay organized throughout the admissions process, use My Planner to create To-Do Lists and complete Tasks assigned to you by your counselor. You can even sync these items to your iPhone or iPod with the Naviance Student app.

College Timeline: Your Sophomore-to-Graduation Checklist

icon "Applying to and visiting schools is a large financial and time commitment. To narrow down your choices, make a list of the characteristics that are most important to you (e.g., small or big, private or public).”
—Kenneth Higgins, director of undergraduate admissions at Sacred Heart University

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  • Research possible career paths.
  • Gear up for ACT/SAT with Total Reader and Naviance Test Prep.
  • Get a jump on graduation requirements with Course Planner.
  • Keep track of summer volunteer work with intelliVol.
  • Take the PSAT/NMSQT in October.
  • Use SuperMatch® to discover your college must-haves.
  • Search virtual campus tours and videos on YouTube.
  • Start researching college costs and financial aid.
  • Get test-ready with Family Connection’s Naviance Test Prep.
  • Make the most of campus tours!
  • Take SAT/ACT pre-tests.
  • Schedule senior year classes with your counselor.
  • Scope out colleges’ social media pages.
  • Prep for AP exams.
  • Plan for summer jobs and internships.
  • Continue campus visits and get ready for senior year!
  • Register for entrance exams.
  • Request letters of recommendation.
  • Narrow down your list of top schools.
  • Set reminders for important forms and deadlines.
  • Scour local and national financial aid sources.
  • Complete the FAFSA at
  • Complete any early applications by November 1.
  • Have test scores sent to schools on your short list.
  • Start drafting personal essays.
  • Save copies of all forms before sending.
  • Send completed applications by each deadline.
  • Practice for interviews using apps such as LikeLive.
  • After filing the FAFSA, watch your inbox for the Student Aid Report.
  • Search for additional funds at free sites like
  • Update the SAR as needed.
  • Check that each prospective school has received your materials.
  • Compare all financial aid/acceptance packages by mid-April.
  • Take last-minute campus tours where possible.
  • Make your final decision!
  • Make sure final transcripts are sent to your chosen school.
  • Have a great summer, and get ready for a life-changing college experience!

icon “It's important to visit all of your top schools to get a feel for how you fit in the environment. If you have older friends or siblings, take advantage of the opportunity to get a taste of the college life.”
—Amy Ricci, director of student activities at Sacred Heart University

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