The College Process: BHGH of NY Edition

By: Selina Diaz 

How would you describe the college process in 3 words? 

“Alot. Of. Work.” - Tyler T., Class of 2019, BLMHS & BHGH of NY 

The Boys Hope Girls Hope of New York college application process is a time that challenges scholars to both understand who they are up until this point, and how to best communicate that to the schools they are interested in.  

Our College Guidance team works tirelessly throughout the year to ensure that each senior scholar receives the individual attention and support they need to navigate the college process and come out on the other side ready to take on the next step in their education. 

First Things First... 

  1. Creating the Common App and CUNY Portal accounts and completing the initial demographic and activities portions of the applications.   

These sections are checked over by the College Guidance team to ensure that each scholar is displaying their best selves. Most of our scholars are incredibly active outside the classroom—often participating in sports, theater, dance and other extracurricular activities offered both through BHGH and our two partner schools. 

The Personal Statement... 

2. Choosing a prompt and writing a personal statement. 

Staff and volunteers work very closely with scholars as they prepare their personal statements. Long nights are spent going back and forth between proofreading and editing until each personal statement reflects our scholars’ best work. As much as it is important for the grammar to be spot on, with our scholars often using their personal statements to reflect upon their own experiences, it is equally important that each scholar walks away feeling like they have told their story to the best of their ability. This one-on-one support and attention are also given as each scholar completes their school-specific writing prompts or supplements, which comes once the scholars (with the help of staff) create their final college list.  


The College List... 

3. Creating a list of colleges to send applications. 

In-state? Out-of-state? SUNY or CUNY? Full scholarship? Partial scholarship? HEOP eligible? These questions and many more all influence the final list of schools where each scholar chooses to apply. This is also a time where the scholars must become realistic with themselves. With a set amount of application fee waivers allotted to each scholar, it is important to choose schools in which the scholar and their family believe will be a good fit—both academically and in personal development. 

Submission Time... 

4. Pressing submit. 

...is a celebration. After we make sure every “i” is dotted and every “t” is crossed, staff and scholars gather around as we all watch the seniors press the submission button on their applications. Surrounded by their peers, we pop confetti, cheer and hold back tears as a sense of relief and pride washes over each senior’s face once they realize all their hard work will soon pay off. 



Though the process is tiresome, challenging and seemingly never-ending, the Class of 2019 applied to a total of 168 schools, with each senior applying to an average of 15 schools.  Acceptances have been pouring in, and in just a little under two months, we will all know where their efforts will lead them in the fall. Please join us as we celebrate National Decision Day on Wednesday, May 1st, to see where Boys Hope Girls Hope of New York’s Class of 2019 will be attending!