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SALT LAKE CITY — College Application. Those two words are enough to strike fear into graduating high school students the world over.
First of all, you have to go through the daunting task of choosing the right schools. Then you need to gather a ton of documents to fill out each application. Then comes the task of conveying who you are and why you're the right fit for the school in a two-page admissions essay. And all of this needs to be done within looming deadlines.
If you're among the hundreds of students who will graduate from high school this year and plan to begin applying for college, check out these websites to help ease the process.
LinkedIn is a handy tool that can help you choose the right schools to apply to. You tell the website what you want to study, where you want to live, where you want to work and what career you want to have, and LinkedIn will pop out a list of schools that will give you the best path.
Petersons offers a comprehensive list of undergraduate and graduate programs, as well as online programs that you can compare and contrast to find the right program for you. You can also find test prep, study resources, a scholarship search, essay writing assistance and resume help.
Petersons also has a bookstore where you can find helpful resources on the college search and application process.
Need help writing your admission essay? If so, the professional writers at Essays Capital can help. All the writers have advanced degrees and can help workshop your writing. They will also do a professional edit before you attach your essay to your application.
Admitted.ly is a free website that guides you through the application process. One fun tool is the college finder. Unlike LinkedIn's finder, which is based on practical factors like your career goals and ideal location, Admitted.ly's finder tool focuses on more specific, personal preferences like your religion and your feelings about tattoos and piercings.
The site also includes over 200 lessons with advice on things like essay writing and SAT prep.
Are you worried about your chances of being accepted to your dream school? Stat Fuse will tell you how likely you are to get past the application process. If you're not happy with the results, you can either ignore them and apply anyway or decide to put your efforts into a school that offers better odds.
College Confidential is the largest college forum in the world. The discussions on the forum will give you insights and help you decide which college you should attend, what will matter the most to you during the search process and answer your financial aid questions.
BigFuture is a convenient website where you can find college application information, financial aid, guidance on scholarships and a personalized step-by-step plan for getting through the entire college search and application process.
The tailored college plan is based on your interests, your current grade level, your financial need and what you're most looking forward to about the college experience. There's also a section that explains different college majors so you can begin to get an idea of what interests you.
The college application process is going to be stressful; there's no getting around it. But with these websites, at least you'll have a little help along the way.
What other resources would you recommend to students applying for college? Let us know in the comments.
Robert Morris is a freelance editor and writer from New York City. He currently lives in Miami Springs and is an avid traveler, reader and yoga enthusiast. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org.