Class of 2017 Newsletter
December 2016

It is apropos during this holiday season to offer thanks for those in our lives who have made a meaningful impact. In that spirit, we would like to thank all those seniors who have worked so diligently during the fall both on your applications and within the Gilman community. You, too, should take the time to thank those around you who have helped to make your experience at Gilman possible. Take time to thank your parents for their guidance and support, and take time to send thank you notes to teachers who wrote letters of recommendation on your behalf. Just a few more weeks, and you will have completed all of your college applications. Hang in there!

December Checklist

Please attend to the following: 

  • Submit yellow slips to Ms. Sawyer for any school with a January deadline by Friday, 12/2.
  • Turn in your application survey to Ms. Sawyer by Friday, 12/2.
  • Send all January deadline essays to your college counselor for review before winter break.
  • Parents, please complete and submit all financial aid forms. All schools will require the FAFSA and many will also require the CSS PROFILE.    

Managing Early Application Decisions


Decisions Timeline

Most colleges send ED decisions in mid-December; the timing of EA decisions will vary from mid-December through late January. Please see each college's websites for their specific notification timelines. Admission decisions are mostly received electronically, so be on the lookout for emails with instructions about when and how to view your decision. Please remember to keep your college counselor updated on your admission decisions - we only know this news if we hear it from you.


Early Acceptances

If you are admitted ED, you need to notify the other schools where you have applications pending to cancel those apps - this can easily be accomplished by an email to the admission office with your name and date of birth, stating that you've been admitted elsewhere and need to withdraw your application. This is necessary as it is required and expected by the colleges, and it potentially frees up space at those schools for someone who truly wants to attend.


If you are admitted EA, you have until May 1 to notify colleges of your final decision, so you can wait to hear the news from other applications in the spring. If financial aid is a component of your decision, this is certainly wise. But, if an EA acceptance means that you know you will not pursue some of the other schools on your list, it is a gesture of good faith to withdraw those applications, as that may benefit peers who sincerely want to attend.


ED/EA Deferrals

If you are deferred early from a top choice school, your file will be reviewed again during the Regular round. There are two influential steps you might take:

  1. Finish the term strong, with your very best performance on papers and exams. First semester grades are sent to colleges as soon as they are ready, and the admission offices will eagerly review this grade report so that April decisions can be made.
  2. Send a letter to the school that includes three elements:
    1. Explain that this school is still your first choice and that you will enroll if admitted.
    2. Include an academic update that reflects your success and details your excitement about what you are currently studying.
    3. Describe your continued engagement in extracurricular, athletic, service, and community endeavors.

Perhaps most important, be sure to meet with your college counselor in January to discuss your overall list and the letter you will draft for the deferring school.

January Application Deadlines


Yellow Slips

Yellow slips for early January application deadlines are due by the end of the week. The college counseling office is working to have all materials sent to colleges before we leave for winter break. Even if you are uncertain about whether you will apply to a school or schools, submit those yellow slips to Ms. Sawyer anyway. Please do not wait to receive news regarding an ED or EA application before submitting your yellow slips for January deadlines.  


December Application Surveys

We have distributed orange application surveys to the entire class and have asked the seniors to complete and return those to Ms. Sawyer by December 2nd. These forms and the information contained allow us to appropriately advise seniors as we head into winter break.  With the vast majority of the class applying early, there is a great deal of admission news that will arrive just days before we leave for break. Because in-person communication is always best and because the CCO staff will also be on vacation spending time with our families, we will want to provide this counsel when school is in session.   


Winter Break and Essay Review

Though we hope those students who applied early get good news, students also need to plan ahead for the possibility of submitting Regular Decision and/or ED II applications. That means starting work on these supplemental essays now, especially for January 1 deadlines, as last minute applications are rarely strong and effective ones. If you wait to receive decisions and then start the essays, you will be right up against math/science exams and then the winter break. Each of the college counselors has different plans over the break. Ideally, each senior has been conscientious about advice offered and looming deadlines. If there is a need during break, seniors are encouraged to send their essays and application questions to your counselor.


Senior Year Grade Submission

As an office, we have reviewed all first quarter grades for seniors and have sent them to EA/ED schools when we believe they will help. We also send them if specifically requested by a college. Because first quarter grades are not automatically sent for all students, please let your counselor know as soon as possible if you receive a request for first quarter grades. First semester grades, however, are sent to all schools to which students have applied and/or been admitted. Finally, if for any reason you receive notification that a school requires any additional information, please let your counselor know.


Sending SAT/ACT Scores

A reminder: Gilman does not send SAT or ACT scores as a part of our school materials. Schools require that official score reports be sent through the College Board or ACT sites. Please be sure to research what scores each school requires and submit your scores accordingly by logging into your College Board or ACT account. Please see your counselor with any questions about score submission.  

Contact the CCO

Iva Turner

410-323-3800 ext. 226

Matt Herman

410-323-3800 ext. 748

Anna Follensbee

410-323-3800 ext. 307

Justin Baker

410-323-3800 ext. 741

5407 Roland Avenue / Baltimore, Maryland 21210 / 410.323.3800

College Counseling Website

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