Not only is it a myth, it simply isn’t true. I have successfully worked with my two oldest sons in preparing them for college. At present they are both well situated in a University, both enjoying the responsibility and benefits of full scholarships. Through the process of attaining this situation the junior year, though important, did not in any way shape or form have dominion over the others. Certain aspects of the freshman year being the only exception. Still, what a student does during the freshman year can set the pace and the stage for whats to come and at times be a detriment if gone completely unattended.
Colleges, especially when scholarships are involved, are looking for the well rounded student. Grades, without question are paramount. SAT’s and other similar tests weigh even more. Into the mix goes other things as well and the more there is to add to the pot, the better it shines on the student.
Leadership shown through participation in school activities, athletics, academic challenges, and community service all play an important roll. How the student has built these things into the structure of his high school career is viewed by the colleges from beginning to end. Taken as a whole, those doing the looking and eventually deciding will prefer steady growth to one year of out and out application. They will admire and ultimately recognize consistent application and the student who has applied themselves will reap the benefits while accomplishing them, as well as when their goals are realized.
Certainly, a great deal of the prospective college students’ vital decisions will be made during the junior year. Much of the admission and scholarship process have a need to be in motion by the senior year, so beginning the process as a junior is simply logic, but not some special year that the colleges are focusing on.
If the junior has up until this point neglected these areas of concern, it isn’t best, but it isn’t over. As long as the GPA is better than average, the student can begin involving themselves and still see positive results. Of course the earlier the better, but it’s never too late to do something. And something over nothing is a sure fire way to increase the possibility of success from a very small prospect to at least a perhaps, and if done with vigor, perhaps even to a more than probable.