Stressing over a college admissions video? Here are 7 tips for college admissions videos:

1. Make the first 8 seconds count. What would the admissions counselor want to know about you? What would make them interested to know more? It’s a bet that your name and high school isn’t the most pressing on their minds. Perhaps start by telling them something like this:

In (whatever year) I had a (…life changing? – inspiring? – embarrassing? – challenging?) moment when (- this happened), and that lead to my desire to …

2. Explain why you want to go to this school. Is there a passion that you feel this school will further? Key into a specific reason you chose this school.

3. Tell a story. Everyone has a story about a meaningful and memorable event that inspires them or has taught them a life lesson. Often a family member has a lasting effect, or a teacher or perhaps you learned a lot from a sports defeat. Tie the story into what you said in the first 8 seconds if you can.

4. Make sure if there are admissions questions that you answer them. This video might have information required about you that isn’t in any other part of the application.

5. When you are on camera – be as close to the camera as possible to get the best sound. The audio is actually more important than the video. Also, your head should be in the upper third of the frame, not in the middle, so try to avoid all that empty space above your head.

6. Speak clearly and naturally. Try to show your personality. If you are reading your remarks, it’s great to use inflection and even hand gestures.

7. Don’t forget non-verbal parts of the video. When you are on camera, be mindful of the sound and lighting. Do a practice video and take a hard look at and listen to the playback. Look for these types of distractions. Are there shadows on your face, is there a window behind you, posters or wires on the wall, hair out of place, wrinkles in your clothes, lawn mowers passing by, music, phone calls or texts or conversations in the background, or even wind noise, if you are filming outdoors?
Good luck with college admissions! Need more help with your college admissions video, please feel free to contact me.