May 9

Traits Colleges Look for in Potential Students

Discover what colleges are looking for and how you can use this information to stand out in the application process.

The admissions department at most colleges is constantly swamped by applications and potential students expressing interest. Standing out among the large number of applications may seem like a daunting task, but if you do your best on the essay and letters of recommendation, then you can make a name for yourself. Keep reading to find out what colleges are looking for and how you can use this information to stand out among your peers.

Some common traits colleges look for in students are leadership qualities, curiosity, a commitment to service and likeability.

Leadership is one of the most important qualities colleges consider because, ultimately, colleges want students to contribute to the overall success. Strong leaders will thrive in the college environment and help others aspire to achieve the same success. 

Curiosity is also an important trait colleges look for in applicants. This includes people who take risks – not drastic risks, but calculated risks. You can expand upon your curiosity in your college essay to give admissions reps an idea of what you are curious about and how it has helped you become a better person. Curious students can also help spark ideas in other students.

You don’t have to be a superstar athlete to stand out in your college application. A commitment to service is a highly desirable trait colleges look for in potential students. The students who are passionate about serving those in need will stand out to admissions reps.

Overall, admissions officers are looking for students who have the trait of likeability. Likeability can be a result of special skills or an interesting background story, as well as candidates who are polite, friendly and rise to the occasion.

Additionally, while all of that is good to put into your application, admissions officers can have a hard time getting to know you just from that. However, there are a few aspects of a college application that can help you stand out among the others.

The first one is extracurricular activities, what you do outside of the classroom can reveal a lot about you to people responsible for admitting you to college. Second, summer jobs and activities also hold a lot of weight with admissions. Students who work a summer job at a fast-food restaurant can benefit just as much as people who attend prestigious summer programs. Finally, the college essay is the best way to express who you are and really hone in on what sets you apart from other applicants. Be creative, but most importantly, be yourself!

Try implementing these tips and traits as you begin your college search and application process. If you are interested in a school like South College, reach out to an admissions rep today!

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