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Study habits last a lifetime (and my top 3 study tips)
Written by Jack Delehey on July 22nd, 2022
Previously written on 09/17/2021
Last weekend I had a pretty cool moment. I was back in Nashville for a wedding and decided to go on a run through Vanderbilt’s campus. A lot has changed since I graduated in 2014, but a lot seemed to be just as I left it. Nearly at the end of my run, I decided to run by my former sophomore dorm...and look who I found outside.
Meet Melina, one of the most dedicated students I’ve ever had the pleasure of coaching (2020 program graduate). When she joined my program, she was in a state of confusion, not quite sure how to navigate the college admissions landscape.

What a great moment to get to meet her in person (for the first time...oh how many Zoom calls we had back in the day) and see her thriving and in her element. It was one of those moments that really brought me back to my roots. This is why I do this, to help change students’ lives.

It also got me thinking about what aspects of the DCC College Confidence Program actually still apply to college students. The answer? A good amount.

If you’ve followed along with this newsletter, you know the following: high school grades and the rigor of the classes you take are the #1 factor in college admissions. That’s a given, and is why we work on building strong study habits early on with HS students in the DCC Program.

But here’s something I’m sure Melina would tell you: these same study habits that lead to exceptional high school grades will help you throughout your college career and beyond.

Without further ado, my top three study tips that apply to all ages--HS & College students (parents, please pass these onto your children today!):
  • ​Study in 50 minute chunks with real, actual 10 minute breaks where you get up out of your chair.
  • ​Study with your phone on airplane mode so you stop distractions (Tik Tok, Instagram, Snapchat, Texts, Facetimes) before they start
  • ​Have a game plan before you start studying, don’t just dive in arbitrarily
The goal of this newsletter is to be short and actionable so I will spare you elaborate essays on the reasoning behind these three tips. (If you’d like to read my in-depth article on why 50 minute chunks is the best method for studying, you can read my April blog on it here.)

But know this--if you are a high schooler or college student and you actually implement just these three simple tips above for one evening, just one evening, you’ll start to set in motion study habits that will help you for the rest of life. (And if you’re a parent reading this, please do pass these tips onto your will help them focus and get more done in an evening homework session than they’ve experienced before.)

In my College Confidence Program, I have a week 1 challenge for all of my students--a challenge they have to complete in order to graduate from Section 1 of my program. They have to utilize these three tips above for one entire homework evening. My goal with this is to get the ball rolling, give them just enough to experience tremendous study progress without saying “you have to do this for the next 2 years of high school,” which feels tremendously overwhelming. What I’ve noticed, however, is that day 1 happens to lead nicely into day 2...and then day 3...and then before you know it a student is proactively utilizing these habits on their own for years to come.
If you think your child might be able to improve their classroom study skills and could benefit from a mandatory week 1 challenge like this, don’t hesitate to reach out (or pass the link onto a family who could use it!).

“The best time to hone study skills is yesterday and the next best time is today!” - Some intellectual, probably.

Happy college-searching,
Committed to helping students & parents experience a stress-free college search

Jack Delehey

Jack Delehey (Vanderbilt '14) is a college admissions expert originally from Concord, MA and now resides in Denver, CO.  It is his goal to pass on his college admission knowledge, strategies, and unique perspective to high school students in a young, fun, relatable, older-brother type manner.

The college application process is often confusing and stressful. But it just doesn't have to be that way! If you are interested in gaining clarity, peace of mind, and a detailed step-by-step program to help your child through the college application process, reach out and request a free strategy session today.
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