...from GuidedPath Edge Guru

Common App Quick Start Tip 2: Create your Ultimate Activities List

Doing pep rallies? Preparing for Academic competitions? Playing a sport?  Colleges care about how you have spent your time while in high school.  Here are 3 steps to the Ultimate Activities List.

1)  WRITE down all the activities you have been involved in during high school.  As your get this information down, include:

  • Name of the organization or activity you were involved in. Don’t use abbreviations. The reader may not know what ASB or DECCA is.
  • A description of the activity or organization. What is the focus of the activity or organization.
  • All activities. Don’t forget about other groups or organizations you belong to outside of school. Youth groups, club or recreational sports, performing arts, talents (such as music) or hobbies count too.
  • Grade level(s) participated in. Include whether you did an activity 1 year or all 4 years.
  • Occasional activities. Doing a food drive once a year counts. Include those once or twice activities.

2)  DETAILS needed.  Be sure to go back and include this information on your activity list:

  • How many hours per week you participated in the activity or organization. Don’t be stingy on your hours; give yourself credit for all hours.
  • How many weeks per year you participated in the activity or organization. Count 1 week for activities you did once.
  • Your level of involvement. Especially include any leadership role you may have held.  Show your growing level of involvement too. If you moved from participant to team leader; or held an office.

3)  PRIORITIZE now. On the Common App you can only list 10 activities. Give priority to the following items on your activity list.

  • Activities with lots of hours.  Hours count. Make sure the activities you spend the most time are listed at the top.
  • Activities with leadership. This is what colleges are looking for. Highlight them!

Your GP Edge

Make your Common App or other applications can stand out.  Use Guidepath to update or start your activity list in Surveys.  Make copies of your Ultimate Activity List to send to the teachers and others you have asked to be a recommender.