Palos Verdes High School

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CEEB Code: 052358 PVPUSD
College Career Center » College Checklist: Senior

College Checklist: Senior



  • Create a college email account for all of the colleges to which you’ll apply.
  • Take a look at some college application platforms to start compiling all the information you will need for applications. Make an excel spread sheet to organize all of the different requirements.
  • Take some time to complete your resume (this will help teachers with recommendations and you with applications). Make a list of awards, accomplishments, and activities you have been a part of during high school.
  • The online application opens for the University of California on August 1st; you can now submit your UC application starting October 1st and throughout the month of November, but you can start working on it now!
  • The Common Application opens on August 1st... create an account and become familiar with the essay prompts.
  • Begin brainstorming ideas for your essays/or begin your first draft of your essay(s).
  • Parents and students should reach an understanding and agreement regarding college finances and budget as they discuss the college list. Review the final college list with your family to make certain you are all on the same page about finances and the schools you’ll be applying to.




  • Attend all of the College Knowledge Nights (students and parents) - Fall of 2022 will be mostly virtual evening presentations to facilitate attendance… there might be “in person” events.
  • Watch the Virtual Senior Guidance Lesson produced by the counseling department and review your transcript for accuracy to be certain you are on track to graduate.
  • Review your final college list with your Counselor and Mrs. Lewis in the PVHSCCC… if your list is not yet finalized this is the time to narrow down your list of colleges and decide what your likely/target/reach schools are.
  • Find out if you might qualify for scholarships at the schools you’ll be applying to. Research merit scholarships on college websites and check in with the College & Career Center via email or an in person or virtual appointment. Attend the “Paying for College” presentation in the College Knowledge Series!
  • Attend virtual and/or in person college fairs, info sessions, campus visits and fall college visits scheduled by the PVHSCCC with schools you are interested in or might be interested in. Take every opportunity to get to know colleges and how they might (or might not) be a good fit for you. Follow the colleges you're interested in on social media and visit their websites.
  • Work on your Senior Packet… stay organized and track your deadlines!
  • Ask your teachers and counselors for letters of recommendation if you haven’t already done so.
  • Begin working on your UC Personal Insight Questions, supplemental essays/writing prompts for the Common or Coalition applications.



  • First draft of UC personal insight questions should be finished and ready to review and edit.
  • Online submission opens for UCs on October 1st and closes on Nov. 30th. Complete UC application early... do not wait until end of Nov, and keep a hard copy of your application!
  • Cal State Universities application is open on Oct 1st; remember to check each individual campus for deadlines and impaction. Cal State application is due on November 30th!
  • Continue to work on you college applications, personal statement and essays. Complete essays for early decision/early action schools.
  • Financial Aid forms to parents; the FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) will be available this month. Create PIN# (ID#), for student and parent. You can submit your FAFSA as early as October 1st, but not later than early March for most colleges.
  • Complete any rolling admissions, early action, or early decision applications
    Meet with your counselor for your letter of recommendation interview (if needed).



  • Continue working on all applications/essays.
  • Talk to your counselor or the PVHSCCC about qualifications and applications for a Cal Grant.
  • Start or continue your search for community and college scholarships.
  • Register for and submit the CSS profile if any of the colleges you are applying to require it. There are over 400 institutions that require this additional financial aid application!
  • If you already have them, you may choose to send SAT or ACT test scores to all schools to which you are applying. If you do not have scores, you will apply test optional. Most colleges in the US are test optional or test blind for the Class of 2023! You can check that list here.
  • Remember the UC and CSU application deadline is Nov. 30th.
  • Finalize and send any early decision or early action application that is due this month. It’s a good idea to have a parent, teacher, counselor, or other adult review the application before it’s submitted.



  • Continue working on essays/applications for private colleges and out of state colleges. Begin to organize your regular decision applications which will be due in January and February.
  • Call colleges to make sure your file is complete.  Check email (and spam folder) for important emails... YOU MUST REGULARLY CHECK YOUR COLLEGE EMAIL ACCOUNTS / PORTALS FOR IMPORTANT UPDATES!
  • Attend PVHS Alumni Day Panel Discussion; talk to former Sea Kings about their experiences and thoughts about college.




  • Send thank you notes to teachers and counselor for recommendation letters they wrote and sent for you.
  • Check for Mid-year Report requirements for non-common app schools and make sure mid-year reports are sent.
  • If you were admitted somewhere by early decision, you must formally withdraw all other applications; this opens up spaces for other qualified students.
  • Check all email accounts for requirements and deadlines; check your spam folder to ensure an important email is not stuck there! Respond quickly to any requests for information regarding an incomplete application!
  • Check to make sure all applications were received (email receipts) and don’t panic!



  • Most priority deadlines for the CSS Profile are in February.
  • FAFSA deadline for many universities is early March… do not miss this deadline so check with each college.
  • Cal Grants Due
  • Check for assessment test requirements and dates if applicable.
  • Keep up your grades… do not let “senioritis” get the better of you! You will need to submit your final transcript to the college of your choice… you do not want to risk your acceptance being rescinded in June!
  • Acceptance letters and financial aid offers will start to arrive for regular decision applicants!



  • Preview programs and visit colleges for an overnight if possible.
  • Send Student Intent to Register (SIR), and then withdrawal notification to colleges you are not attending. (Deadline for Intent to Register is usually May 1). If seeking a Gap Year, you must request permission and notify the college in writing.
  • Check for any other housing or scholarship deadlines.



  • May 1st is the date when the college you plan to attend requires a commitment and deposit.
  • Send deposit for housing.
  • Fill out Senior Exit Survey on SCHOOLINKS: This is very important and should be completed before graduation.


  • Order final transcript to be sent from PVHS to the school you’ll be attending.
  • Attend Senior Awards / Baccalaureate Program
  • Happy Graduation Sea King!



It’s been a long journey through high school and to college… Take time to enjoy your summer!
Make a list of what you will need to take with you for your dorm room. Facebook, call or email your new roommate to get to know each other in advance. In your conversations you can discuss what you plan to bring to your new “home away from home”.

Some colleges offer a summer orientation/ registration or First Year Experience: Make certain to attend these special events in order to meet fellow students and other important people on campus and to familiarize yourself with your new school. This is often the time you get to register for your fall classes.  Godspeed, Sea Kings!