Schools are closed. The SAT and ACT test dates have been cancelled at present through June. In theory, some students have been gifted with more free time in the weeks (and likely months) ahead. So should they use this time to work on their college essay?
Unsurprisingly, there is no one best answer for all. Some students may not have time because they are caring for family members or need to take on additional household tasks while their parents work. Others might not be psychologically ready to begin the necessary reflection needed to produce a compelling, authentic personal statement. For these students, we recommend that they wait to begin work on their college essay.
For other students, however, the time might be right for them to start their college essay because they anticipate a busy fall senior year or they have the capacity to begin the writing process. For those students we suggest that they begin the writing process by reading the Common Application essay prompts . We also recommend that they check out school websites that provide sample essays written by accepted students.
What’s most important is to check in with your student and ask them whether they feel ready to begin the writing process or need to wait until summer or later. Either way, there is still ample time to craft a great essay.