College Information

  • College Admissions & Application Information


    Need Answers to Your Senior College Questions? 

    Let Shorecrest's College and Counseling team help.

    For starters, check out the NEW Canvas Class of 2022 course.

    Highlight the "star" icon so it appears on your Dashboard. Then read all the helpful information in the modules about how to request transcripts, letters of recommendation, add colleges to Naviance and more.

    Still have a question?

    Come to Monday & Tuesday College Apps Café:

    Cut stress and finish your applications with help from Shorecrest’s counseling team –

    open Mondays and Tuesdays during lunch in the Career Center. 

    Questions? Email your counselor.


    Frequently asked questions: 

    “How do I apply to a two-year college in Washington state for free?”

    Seniors interested in attending any public community or technical college in Washington are strongly encouraged to complete a free online application at Application to Washington state two-year colleges

    Good news: community colleges do not require an SAT or ACT, personal statement or a Letter of Recommendation.

    "I’m so disappointed! I was going to tour a college and now previews are cancelled. How can I choose the right school if I can't visit the campus?”

    You're right: this is rough. But there is good news: many schools are adding “virtual tours” to their websites. Try this tips offered here, too: Virtual College Tours

    "I've been accepted to the college/university I would like to attend. How do I arrange to get my final transcript?"

    Stay tuned. Shorecrest College & Career Center will be sharing details about how to request your transcript via Naviance. These are sent electronically to one college of your choice. Please do not email your counselor, Ms. Hudson or Ms. Monson about sending it another way. Colleges and universities want you to wait until your final semester grades are complete, so typically this happens in late June or early July. 

    "I hear that May 1 is usually the deadline for committing to a college. Is that going to change?"

    In many cases, this is going to vary from university to university. Two-year colleges do not require a May 1 commitment - but four-year schools need to know who is coming to their school in the fall. It's vital for you to check each of your college's websites to see which deadline you need to follow.  College Deadlines during a Pandemic

    Other great college planning resources:

    Did you miss the Summer Series hosted by Colleges That Change Lives? Good news! Recordings can be found here:

    Learn more about:

    • The College Athletic Recruiting Process
    • Writing your Personal Statement
    • CTCL and the Liberal Arts


    Summer flew by – and maybe you missed the summer college series hosted by ARROW (Association for Regional Representatives in Oregon and Washington). The blockbuster series is now available on its own ARROW YouTube channel:

    Learn more about:

    • How to Write the College Essay
    • Financial Aid Basics
    • How to Connect with Colleges
    • Making the Most of College Visits
    • How College Decisions Are Made
    • Going Out of State and WUE scholarships:

    * * * * * * 

    This website is a great resource for getting started on your college applications.

    Counselors can help you do the following:

    • Identify good-fit colleges
    • Fill out college applications
    • Write great admissions essays
    • Understand Financial Aid and what colleges are a good financial choice for you
    • Search for helpful scholarships
    • How? By using Naviance: to request transcripts; arrange letters of recommendation from teachers; search for colleges, careers and majors; and keep an organized list of colleges you are applying to

    Keep an organized list of colleges you're interested in and find out when their admissions representatives are coming to meet you in the Shorecrest College & Career Center.


    Frequently Asked Questions:

    How do I compare college costs?

    The non-profit College Affordability Guide team has analyzed 10 million data points related to 5,000+ colleges and universities in the U.S., including graduation/transfer rates and loan default rates. The results appear at Rankings of affordable schools in Washington state can be found at


    What is the Common Application? 
    • The Common Application (often referred to as "Common App") is an undergraduate college admission application system used by more than 2.5 million high school seniors use each year to apply to any of almost 900 member colleges and universities in 47 states, the District of Columbia, and internationally in Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Switzerland, and United Kingdom.
    • In Washington state, Common App schools include: Gonzaga; Pacific Lutheran University; St. Martin's; Seattle Pacific University; Seattle University; University of Puget Sound; Whitman; and Whitworth.  
    • Important: the Common App is found at - not .com.
    • The Common App is online only. At Shorecrest, students use their personal Naviance account to have transcripts and teacher-written letters of recommendation sent to Common App schools.
    • Also important: When you create an account, write down your username and password in not just one - but in TWO safe places. Losing or forgetting this information is painful and time-wasting!
    • Students may start - and save - their progress on the Common App. It does not need to be completed in one sitting. For some students, this takes a few hours.
    • To complete the Common App, students must upload their personal statement/college admissions essay. Prompts are provided.
    • If using Shoreline-issued iPads to complete Common App registration, please use Firefox as the browser; it appears to be more successful than Safari.
    • Do NOT list your recommenders in the Common App. Shorecrest is a Naviance school; your recommenders will be listed and their letters of recommendation will be submitted through Naviance. Listing recommenders in the Common App will FREEZE your application, and those of other Shorecrest students using that recommender. 

    What are the Common App essay prompt choices for prospective Fall 2022 freshmen?

    • Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
    • The lessons we take from obstacles we encounter can be fundamental to later success. Recount a time when you faced a challenge, setback, or failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
    • Reflect on a time when you questioned or challenged a belief or idea. What prompted your thinking? What was the outcome?
    • Describe a problem you've solved or a problem you'd like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma - anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
    • Discuss an accomplishment, event, or realization that sparked a period of personal growth and a new understanding of yourself or others. 
    • Describe a topic, idea, or concept you find so engaging that it makes you lose all track of time. Why does it captivate you? What or who do you turn to when you want to learn more?
    • Share an essay on any topic of your choice. It can be one you've already written, one that responds to a different prompt, or one of your own design.

    The Coalition Application has also announced its essay prompts for the 2021-22 application season.

    • Tell a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it.
    • Describe a time when you made a meaningful contribution to others in which the greater good was your focus. Discuss the challenges and rewards of making your contribution.
    • Has there been a time when you’ve had a long-cherished or accepted belief challenged? How did you respond? How did the challenge affect your beliefs?
    • What is the hardest part of being a teenager now? What’s the best part? What advice would you give a younger sibling or friend (assuming they would listen to you)?
    • Submit an essay on a topic of your choice.


    What are the University of Washington's essay prompts?

    Applications to the U.W. Seattle and U.W. Bothell open Sept. 1, 2021. The only deadline for the Seattle campus is Nov. 15. UW Bothell has a Nov. 15 Early Action deadline and a Jan. 15, 2022 final deadline. Please use: For details, please see Two personal statements and an activities/achievements list are required.

    Did you know…?

    …The University of Washington Seattle is on the Coalition Application – but does not follow Coalition prompts. You must upload your primary and secondary personal statements direct to UW Seattle application. UW Seattle requires these both:

    • Tell us a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it. (max 500 words) AND
    • Discuss how your family experience or cultural history enriched you or presented you with opportunities or challenges in pursuing your education goals (max 300 words)

    The University of Washington Bothell is on the Coalition Application – but does not follow all Coalition prompts, either. You must upload a response to only one of these same choices directly to the UW Bothell application. 


    Keep in mind that the University of Washington strives to create a community of students richly diverse in cultural backgrounds, experiences, values, and viewpoints. You may define culture broadly. For example, it may include ethnicity, customs, values, and ideas, all of which contribute to experiences that students can share with others in college. As you reply to this question, reflect on what you have learned — about yourself and society — from an experience of cultural difference.

    C. Additional Information About Yourself or Your Circumstances (Optional)


    Maximum length: 200 words

    You are not required to write anything in this section, but feel free to include additional information if something has particular significance to you. For example, you may use this space if:

    • You are hoping to be placed in a specific major soon
    • A personal or professional goal is particularly important to you
    • You have experienced personal hardships in attaining your education
    • Your activities have been limited because of work or family obligations
    • You have experienced unusual limitations or opportunities unique to the schools you attended

    D. Additional Space (Optional)

    You may use this space if you need to further explain or clarify answers you have given elsewhere in this application, or if you wish to share information that may assist the Office of Admissions. If appropriate, include the application question number to which your comment(s) refer.

    What are Washington State University's 2021-22 personal statement questions?

    A personal statement is longer required by WSU for general admission, but is used for Honors program applications. A statement may be requested by WSU if a student is one the "bubble" or for students applying for scholarships.

    What are Western Washington University's personal statement prompts? 

    For details, visit Students are asked to respond to one of the prompts below as part of the application for admission. Most essay responses are about 500 words, but this is only a recommendation, not a firm limit. Feel free to take what space is necessary for you to tell your story.

    Students are asked to respond to one of the prompts below as part of the application for admission. Most essay responses are about 500 words, but this is only a recommendation, not a firm limit. Feel free to take what space is necessary for you to tell your story.

    • Share a meaningful experience and how this has helped shape you in your preparation for college. This could be related to your passions, commitments, leadership experience, family or cultural background.

    • Describe any activities you have been involved in related to diversity or multiculturalism and explain how you will actively contribute to a diverse campus community at Western.

    • Admissions Essay – topic of your choice. If you have written another essay that captures what you want the Admissions Committee to know about you, feel free to share it with us.

    What are the essay prompts for University of California (UC) schools?

    Choose four of the eight questions, and limit your response for each to 350 words. All questions are equal.

    Find the UC questions and directions here:

    Universal Essay Tips

    • Spend time reflecting before you start your essay. Your college essay is your chance to "speak" to the Admissions Committee, so make yourself come alive! Our essay questions are listed above so you can start composing a well-written essay that reflects you and your potential before you apply. The best college essays are those that make the reader feel like they know you, so write with sincerity.

    • Demonstrate sustained involvement. Committing to—and staying in—a particular activity that you're passionate about or your experience in an academic course is more interesting than occasional or one-time participation. Tell us how those experiences affected you as a student or as a person.

    • Express your pride and appreciation for cultural diversity. Enthusiasm for and experience within culturally diverse environments will be key to your success here at Western and beyond.

    • Don't be shy. Applying to college is great practice for eventually applying for jobs in the "real world," where you are expected to "sell" yourself. Have you made a positive difference in the lives of others, whether in your family, community or school? Let your talent shine by telling us about your accomplishments in your activities list or by submitting additional information with your application. Letters of recommendation aren't required, but if a teacher or counselor has written one for you, feel free to submit it as well.

    • Proofread! The content of your essay is important, but so is the written quality. Ask a teacher, parent or friend to read through your essay; they can catch errors or help you strengthen your message. 

    What are Central Washington University's personal essay prompts? 

    This is not required at CWU.

    What is University of Washington Bothell's ACADEMIC TRANSITION PROGRAM (ATP)

    • The Academic Transition Program (ATP) is a year-long academic preparation program designed to provide assistance for historically disadvantaged, low-income, and first generation college students; though all students may be considered to participate. Successful ATP candidates may not have performed well by traditional measures of college preparedness such as standardized testing. They are selected for the program by showing great promise in overcoming adversity, and demonstrating particularly strong motivation to succeed in college. This program is a summer early start for first-year students that would not meet admissions criteria and usually have a cumulative GPA of 2.5 to 2.9 with SAT scores (Reading and Math) of 750 to 900, but show potential to succeed. More information can be found here:


    Where can I find a timeline/checklist for the college applications process?

    1) In the "documents library" on the right side of your Naviance "Welcome" page. Here is a helpful checklist, too: 

    Click here to visit Washington Student Achievment Council website! 

    Click here to visit Counselor Workshop Guide to Washington State Colleges

    Click here to visit the Minimum College Admission Standards via Higher Education Coordinating Board

    Click here to visit the Washington State Community & Technical Colleges website featuring Education & Training for the real world. 
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