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Seniors Class of 2020

Organization is the key to college application ease.  Know your deadlines, how to apply to (and communicate) with each college on your list.  Be sure to list ALL of your colleges in your Naviance portal: "Colleges I am Applying To" and update your list with the college admissions decisions throughout the year.  This is primarily how you will track transcript, teacher, and counselor recommendation information. Your guidance counselor or the college and career center can assist you with questions. 

Appointments: The College and Career center advisers are available to meet with students during the school day. Stop in to C&CC, or send us a school loop email, to schedule an appointment during access and/or during a non academic class period. For questions about high school courses, see your academic counselor.

IMPORTANT:  Keep up your grades - SENIOR YEAR GRADES MATTER TO COLLEGES - College acceptances are conditional.  Know your colleges' policies:  some 4 year colleges require applicants to report non passing grades (D or F) to them, others do not.  Read your offer of admission letter to learn that college's policy!  


Colleges I am Thinking About:  You probably started this list in sophomore or junior year.  Continue to add to this list over your junior/senior summer and then you will move the colleges where you intend to apply to the list below to help you manage your applications.  One benefit of building a long "Colleges I am Thinking About" list is that if any of those colleges visit SRVHS, you will receive an email indicating they are visiting and a link to sign up for that visit!  (we host over 125 colleges in the center each fall!)

Colleges You Are Applying To:  Add the schools to the Colleges I'm Applying to List in Naviance.  You will be able to see application deadlines, transcript request features and other features that are (may be) necessary during the application process.  You will work closely with your guidance counselor to submit necessary documents (letters of recommendation, transcripts, etc. if required).

Teacher Recommendations: Ask your teacher, in person, if they will write you a letter of recommendation. If they agree, in the fall you will 'officially' request a teacher letter of recommendation to your teacher through Naviance.  Your teacher will upload his/her letter via the link you send them in your 'invitation' via the Naviance program.

Counselor Recommendation Letters:  Go to main page of your Naviance Student account.  Scroll to the bottom to find "Resources to get Ready", and open the "Document Resources" link.   Download and print the first 4 documents, plus the "College Application Tips" download. These will become your "Letter of Recommendation" packet. Forms include: Due date form,  Parent Questionnaire, Student Self Evaluation and Resume for Seniors {guidelines}, plus the 'Tip" sheets. Turn in the (numbered) completed sheets to your counselor at least 3 weeks before you need to submit your first recommendation letter.  

ACT/SAT Scores: You will need to go directly into your ACT and/or CollegeBoard (SAT) account and have your scores sent to your schools of choice. Scores are not automatically sent---be sure to send your scores!!  For UC:  Send scores to one campus and they all will receive them.  For CSU:  Send  score(s) to one CSU and all 23 campuses will have access to them (via the CSU server).  For all other schools:  send to each one individually.  See more information on the SAT/ACT page in this website. 

Student Portal Accounts on College Websites: Check your emails often. After submitting your application, you will likely receive an email linking you to each college's specific portal. Your college portal will keep you updated on items received, missing, and/or needed. This is also where many colleges will notify you of their admission decision to their campus and inform you of next steps.

REMINDER - Keep your Naviance account updated. This database is used throughout the college application process. 

In addition:

College Applications

Different schools use different application systems: For non UC/CSU schools, you will either complete their own individual university application, a common application or a coalition application. 

When filling out an application, be sure you have a copy of your transcript with you as well as your activities resume. You will likely be asked to 'self report' grades as well as list (or upload) extracurricular activities, awards, employment, etc. Gather this information ahead of time to make your process easier.  

UC Application :
Opens to view/begin Aug. 1 each year.  Application submitted, Nov. 1-30

CSU Application  
Opens Oct. 1, each year.   Submission deadline Nov. 30. 

  • Be sure to download and use their helpful application guide.  

Common Application (over 700 schools):  Opens August 1, each year.

  • You may begin your application online anytime after August 1st. The application also requires school counselor input. Download a counselor packet from your Naviance portal "Resources to Get Ready" on your welcome page.  Complete this packet and make an appointment with your counselor to turn it in. Counselors will need at least 3 weeks notice to write a letter of recommendation.
  • If you need any teacher recommendation letters they will be able to upload them to Naviance after you invite them via the link in your Naviance portal. Remember to verbally ask them first.  

Institutional Applications (some schools may provide you with an option to submit THEIR own college/university application):

  • See specific college website for the application info and submission details.  There may be essays and personal statements required.

Coalition Application:

  • Approximately 90+ schools are utilizing this new application. Most schools will also offer one of the other types of applications outlined above. If a school offers more than one application option, it is up to the student to decide which one they prefer. There is no preferential treatment based on which application is used.  

College Application Worksheet: The attached google link may help you stay organized with college admissions and your applications.  Open the document and save a copy as your own!

College Essays  UC Insight Questions and Common Application Essay prompts are attached below. Also go to the UC guide for information on tips for completing the Insight Questions. You might also go to The College Essay Guy   for resources, tips, tools, and webinars for essay assistance.  We are happy to assist you in C&CC with this as well! 

NOTE:  Be careful who you ask to read your essays/personal statements.  The best feedback comes from people who do not know you well (as college reps most likely do not know you well either).  Ask for informative and constructive feedback.  

Community College Both DVC and Las Positas send college representatives to talk to graduating seniors about their (post high school) application process in the Jan/Feb time frame of senior year.  Those visits will be announced on School Loop and seniors will sign up via their Naviance portal. Both colleges offer early admissions programs for SRVHS graduating seniors and the biggest benefit of taking advantage of those programs is EARLY COURSE registration at each college.  DVC:   and Las Positas.

Initial Transcripts:  Many colleges ask applicants to send official copies of their high school transcripts when they apply.  Request these to be sent via your Naviance account.  

Mid Year Transcripts:  If you need to send your midyear transcript (aka 7th-semester transcript) to the colleges you are applying to, please go to your Naviance account, select "Request Transcripts."

  • Click on the box for "Midyear Transcript."  In some cases, you may notice that the "Initial" automatically gets checked, too.  That's okay, let it be. 
  • Disregard the option to send SAT/ACT scores - we don't do that. 
  • Choose the colleges that you want to send the midyear transcript to and submit.

Please read carefully all communications from the colleges you've applied to so you know if you need to send a mid-year transcript!

Midyear transcripts will be ready to send the week of January 13th.  If your college requests it before then, don't worry.  They understand that different schools have different end-of-semester dates.  This is a soft deadline.  Again, read all correspondence and check your portals for requirements like this.

If you have any questions, please feel free to go see Mrs. Murray in counseling with questions!