After-School Jobs Vs. Extracurricular Activities on Your College Application

Elizabeth French/College Confidential

I get to meet tons of college applicants at the talks I give on the college admissions process. Students with responsibilities outside of school, whether they have a part-time job or family obligations, are often anxious that they are missing out on extracurricular activities that they need for their college application. If that sounds like you, I'm here to allay your fears!

On a college application, an after-school job conveys that you rise to responsibilities and challenges. Admissions officers are not going to wonder why you weren't playing baseball or starring in the school play -- they will see that you're mature and professional. If you have had to dedicate significant time to family obligations, you might consider writing about that experience in your college essay. It's a great opportunity to show admissions officers what's important to you and demonstrate your “grit."

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