Do you want to know the real reason why winter seems so short? No, it’s not because of all the sleep you get when snow locks you inside your house. It’s because it’s actually the shortest season, at 89 days. BUT, I’m going to pretend I didn’t just Google that so I can write the intro I planned in my head. Winter seems so short because there are so many special days! It begins on October 3, the day Aaron Samuels tells Cady Heron what day it is. Then, Halloween on October 31, followed by Thanksgiving, which happens to be on November 25 this year, and then there’s all the religious holidays, of which I celebrate Christmas Eve on December 24, Christmas on December 25, Day After Christmas (that’s a thing, right?) on December 26, and New Year’s Eve on December 31 and then New Year’s Day on January 1! Phew, that was a mouth full. BUT, there’s one more day I left out: December 1, the merit scholarship deadline for Undergraduate Admission at USC.
Hopefully by now you’ve been working on your Common App and have at least looked at the USC application questions. Side piece of advice: be yourself on the application! I remember when the next question asked me what my favorite food was, and I honestly answered “Wendy’s Pretzel Bun.” Still my favorite burger. Anyway, there are a few fun questions and a few short answers for you to fill out. The first-year deadline for regular consideration isn’t until January 15, 2015, so why not take your time and finish your application during winter break? That’s a smart idea, what many people do, but it doesn’t hurt to apply to USC by December 1!
By applying to USC by December 1, you are automatically considered for merit scholarships. That’s right. Just because you applied a month in advance, you are eligible for free money simply based on your scholastic and extracurricular merit. And there are tons of scholarships that USC and various USC-based associations are ready to give out for the 2015-2016 school year. If you are considered for a scholarship, you will be notified in late January. USC doesn’t participate in Early Action or Early Decision, but if you find out you’re considered for a scholarship you will also be notified of your admission at that point. Just saying. Even if you’re not considered for a scholarship, you will still be considered for regular admission and find out your admission decision by April 1 along with everybody else.
So what’s stopping you from applying by December 1? There’s the chance for one of many of scholarships, a chance to live in Birnkrant your freshman year, and you get your application out of the way, which means more time to breathe and relax. Know, though, that applying to USC by this date does not improve your chances of getting it. It doesn’t affect your chances of admission at all. It simply provides you a possibility of attending USC on merit scholarship. Some programs in Cinematic Arts, Dramatic Arts, Music, Dance, and the Iovine and Young Academy actually require you to apply by this date, but check their department websites for more information. Applying to USC by December 1 was one of the most relieving decisions I made in my college application process. I clicked enter, drove to Wendy’s, bought a limited edition Pretzel Bun meal, ate, and relaxed on my couch. The snow locked me in and the winter wait seemed much, much shorter.