Senior College Planning Timeline

gearuplogo_finalSeniors, here is a good way to prepare for your college experience. Take time each month to review some of these tasks and get the help you need to accomplish them from your high school counselors, your parents and the GEAR UP New Mexico staff.



  • Pick colleges that you are interested in (3-4) and gather information. 
  • Visit college campuses 
  • Start researching scholarship opportunities through various colleges’ web sites and/or FastWeb


  • Attend college fairs and gather information 
  • Register for the ACT or SAT 
  • Attend special “senior” day events at various colleges 


  • Take ACT and/or SAT 
  • Research private scholarships via FastWeb or high school counselor’s office 
  • Look and listen for announcements of college representatives visiting your school 
  • Start working on your college applications. 
  • Request that your transcript be sent to colleges that you have applied to 


  • Write essays for any scholarships that require them 
  • Remember UNM Regents’ and Presidential Scholarship deadline is coming up – December 1
  • If recommendation forms are required, give out forms to counselors/teachers/principals 
  • Apply for outside funding/private scholarships 


  • Begin working with your parents on the Free Application for Federal StudentAid (FAFSA)
  • December 1 is UNM Regents’ and Presidential Scholarship application deadline 
  • Take ACT and/or SAT if you haven’t already 
  • Complete a housing application if you plan to live on-campus 


  • Remind your parents to file income taxes for federal financial aid purposes – FAFSA
  • Check counseling office for scholarships 
  • UNM Scholars scholarship deadline is coming up – February 1
  • Don’t forget to complete a housing application if you plan to live on-campus 


  • UNM Scholars scholarship deadline is February 1
  • Make sure colleges have all documentation they require 
  • Remember, file FAFSA by March 1
  • Take any Advanced Placement exams 
  • Take ACT if you haven’t already 


  • FAFSA priority deadline is March 1
  • Watch for orientation materials 
  • Keep hitting the books – high school isn’t over yet! 
  • It’s Spring Break time; make any last minute visits to colleges you’re interested in. 


  • Take ACT and/or SAT if you haven’t already 
  • Watch for financial aid award letters 
  • Watch for orientation information- remember you have to have been admitted! 


  • Double check college deadlines, which are usually in early May 
  • Clear up any loose ends at your high school 
  • Finals time – study hard! 
  • Finalize summer plans- job, school 
  • High School Graduation – Congratulations! 


  • Attend orientation 
  • Summer job – save $$ for college 
  • Take any placement exams if a college requires them 


  • Summer job- save $$ for college 
  • Attend orientation if you haven’t already 
  • Watch for information on campus housing arrangements