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News Article

Teen People
September, 1999

By Karen Robinovitz

Get Smart

Does the thought of applying to college put you in panic mode? Relax. Everything you need to know to get into the school of your dreams is right here.

Summer before senior year:
Prepare for the final push

Send away for applications (they're usually available at the end of the summer or early fall, but you can get on a college's mailing list as early as spring of junior year). Check out, where you can download software to apply to more than 500 schools.

Start brainstorming ideas for your application essays. "Try free writing for ten minutes at a time," suggests Vedant Mimani, CEO of, a Web site that offers online essay tips. For $100, you can submit your work in progress, and an advisory staff (including former admission staff from Harvard and Yale) will give you a careful critique.

Apply for scholarships. As the saying goes, you've got to be in it to win it. There are zillions of scholarships in existence. Visit for a list of more than one million awards from essay contests to prizes for golf caddies. Or pick up Winning Scholarships for College, by Marianne Ragins (Owl Books/Henry Holt, $13).