Google this! How Google can keep you organized through the college admission process


Google This! How Google Can Keep You Organized Through the College Admission Process Kathleen Harrington   The college application process is one that involves time, energy, and organization.  Throughout this process, you should be working smarter, not harder, and hopefully achieving positive results in the end.  Throughout the process thus far, you more than likely have utilized Google to search for colleges or perhaps to further explore a major/minor.  Although a fantastic search engine, Google can also be a key tool in keeping you organized.

Gmail Creating a professional profile begins now and hopefully will continue to grow as you gain experience and further your education.  A professional email address is a must!  You certainly do not want to be the talk of the admissions office when they receive an email from [email protected] with that “talk” not involving your grades or student resume.  Google makes creating and maintaining your email quite simple and has many filter options to help sort the junk from the real mail.  Get started today by visiting and clicking on Gmail.

Google Alert Ok, so this is my favorite Google creation.  A Google Alert allows information to be sent to you immediately via email when your “alert” is mentioned in news, blogs, videos, books, etc.  For example, if I were highly interested in High Point University, I would set a Google Alert to be sent to be once a week with any and all information pertaining to the University. Why is this important you ask?  You want to know the current happenings at your schools of interest throughout the college process.  For example, if a school adds a new scholarship for undergraduate students, you can receive the Alert and get a jump-start on its application.  Or, if you have an interview, you can discuss current campus developments with the interviewee.  And the Alerts do not have to be all college related information, you can set Google Alerts for your favorite bands, sports teams, or even on your own high school.

Google Docs Think of Google Docs as your central command center for organizing your applications, maintaining your student resume, and working on your college essay.  Google Docs allows you to work on documents from any location that has Internet access and also allows you to have others view/edit these documents.  For example, if your English teacher has been kind enough to read over your college essay, you can share your document with him/her, allowing immediate access and editing privileges. As a senior, you owe it to yourself to be just that, a senior, not a college applicant.  Sure the college application process is a part of your senior year however, it should not take over the last year of your high school experience.  Keep in mind that many colleges will want your midyear grades and maintaining high grades is a must.  So remember, work smarter, not harder.  Now, get Googling!

Kathleen Harrington is the full-time Director of Guidance at a high school in Bergen County, NJ. Additionally, she owns and operates a private college consulting business, New Jersey College Consulting. She has over 15 years of experience working with students throughout their college application process.

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