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MAKING THE FINAL CHOICE

Candidates Reply Date Most colleges participate in an agreement to let all students know of their admissions status no later than mid-April for regular admissions options. Then you have until the common reply date of May 1 to let the college know if you will be attending. Typically, colleges require by May 1 a deposit of a few hundred dollars to hold a space for you. Check the instructions you receive from the college. At this time (by May 1) students should also notify colleges if they will not be attending to make room for students on wait lists. Above all, do not deposit at more than one college. "Double-depositing" is frowned on by all colleges and may result in both colleges withdrawing their acceptances. If you are unable to meet the May deadline for some reason (for example a missing financial aid offer), you should request an extension from the admissions office.

Waitlists Inevitably, in addition to being admitted to some colleges, some students will end up on waitlists at some others. Waitlists are the colleges' insurance against being under enrolled in September. They do not know how many deposits they will receive on May 1, and if they appear to be running short, they will soon make offers to those students on the waitlist. Usually this might happen in early May. If you are on a waitlist, there is no guarantee of getting off it, so you must deposit at some college on May 1. If later you are admitted from a waitlist, you of course can choose to go to that college, but let the first one know you changed your mind and expect to lose your original deposit.

Choosing Your College In mid-April you need to decide which college to attend. If you are accepted at your first choice college, you need to be sure that the criteria you were considering in October are still important to you now. Do you have the highest chance for success and fulfillment at this college, or might you do better academically and feel better about yourself if you choose another college from among your acceptances? This choice will be particularly important if you will be pursuing a professional school after graduation. It is a good idea to make one more visit if you are undecided over a couple of colleges or if you have not seen one of your colleges, but you need not spend too much time doing this and interrupting your course work. Keep in mind that it is your decision, and you should pick a college that meets your needs. If you have been attending to each step of the process, the answer should be evident.

In the end, enjoy graduation and your status as a St. Edward High School graduate. You have made an important adult decision and you are well prepared for a successful future. Congratulations!

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