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College Planning Calendar: May 2023

The school year is wrapping up soon! Help students get ready for test dates, graduation, summer, and more with our May College Planning Calendar.

We’re closing in on the end of the year, but there’s still plenty of college planning for high school students to do—and for counselors and consultants too. In fact, May could be one of your busiest months of the year. Here’s your monthly College Planning Calendar covering just about every event, holiday, and general planning situation coming in the month of May.

General college prep and planning

  • High school freshmen: While ninth graders should be finishing up their first year of high school strong, they should also look ahead and start planning a class schedule with college in mind that will challenge them academically.
  • High school sophomores: As school winds down, now is a great time for 10th graders to start building important skills to boost their résumés and future college applications.
  • High school juniors: If 11th graders haven’t taken the SAT or ACT yet, they should plan to register for a session if they’re going to apply to colleges in the fall that still require or strongly recommend test scores.
  • High school seniors: Most 12th graders have made their final college decisions and are anxiously awaiting their first semester. However, many schools offer later enrollment deadlines as well as rolling admission, so it’s not too late if they need to apply to more schools.

Month-long observances and events

  • Asian American and Pacific Islander Heritage Month: Celebrate and learn about AAPI causes and culture this month and beyond. Check out our AAPI Heritage Month content to kick things off!
  • Mental Health Awareness Month: The mental health of students and discussions surrounding it are extremely important. Encourage honest conversations about student health and how to find help when they need it by sharing our mental health content.
  • Jewish American Heritage Month: This month also celebrates the achievements and contributions Jewish Americans have made in communities around the US!
  • Homeschooling Awareness Month: Homeschool students are just like any other student—they need guidance too. Parents who are also acting as counselors can read up on college prep for homeschool students on CollegeXpress.
  • Military Appreciation Month: Pursuing military service is a valid path for students also looking to attend college. Help them learn how they can do both with our article on College Options for Students Interested in the Military.
  • National Photography Month: This is a great opportunity to encourage students interested in photography to think about what kind of future they could build in the field. Be sure to share these Colleges With Fine Photography Programs.

Monday, May 1

National Decision Day

Happy National College Decision Day! While not all students will be making an enrollment deposit today, it’s still a great time to celebrate the accomplishment of completing the college admission process and getting accepted.

@hulu via GIPHY

Free college planning webinar

Moon Prep is hosting a free College Planning: High School Students recorded webinar over Zoom to help high schoolers start the college planning process early. It will take place from 7:00­–8:00 pm ET on Sunday the 1st, so encourage them to register ASAP!

CollegeXpress $10,000 scholarship deadline

Today is the last day of our annual $10,000 scholarship contest! Who will be this year’s winner? Follow us on social media @CollegeXpress for an announcement this summer!

Tuesday, May 2

SAT Live Online Trial Class

Kaplan is offering two free SAT Live Online Trial webinars this month. The first will take place on Tuesday the 2nd from 5:30–7:30 pm ET.

World Press Freedom Day

World Press Freedom Day acts as a reminder to governments and the general public of the importance of freedom of the press and professional ethics. This year’s theme is “Shaping a Future of Rights.”

National Teacher Day

Happy National Teacher Day! Celebrate incredible educators today and every day for everything they give their students.

Wednesday, May 3

Free SAT/ACT scores webinar for parents

Prep Expert’s Dr. Shaan Patel is offering another free parents webinar on 10 secrets to raising standardized test scores and winning scholarships to top colleges. Parents can sign up for this one that starts at 6:00 pm ET on Wednesday the 3rd.

SAT Live Online Trial Class

The second of Kaplan’s free SAT Live Online Trial Class webinars will take place on Wednesday the 3rd from 8:30–10:30 pm ET.

Thursday, May 4

SAT Regular registration deadline

Today is the Regular registration deadline for the June 3 SAT test date.

Star Wars Day

May the Fourth be with you to all you Star Wars fans out there!

Star Wars Day

@starwars via GIPHY

Friday, May 5

Cinco de Mayo

Today marks the anniversary of Mexico’s victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. ¡Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

ACT Regular registration deadline

Today is the Regular registration deadline for the June 10 ACT test date.

National Space Day

Today celebrates all the extraordinary achievements and opportunities of space exploration! Honor it by learning about influential astronaut Peggy Whitson.

Saturday, May 6

SAT test date

Today is an SAT test date for students across the country. Make sure your students have a test day game plan ahead of time!

National Nurses Week

Nurses Week kicks off with National Nurses Day on Saturday the 6th and includes Student Nurse Day on Monday the 8th and School Nurse Day on Wednesday the 10th. Thank you to all the incredible nurses out there!

Gif of stethoscope in the shape of a heart with words Celebrate Nurses and Nurses Week

@wambicares via GIPHY

ACT Live Online Trial Class

Students can prep for upcoming ACT test dates with Kaplan this month in a Live Online Trial Class on Saturday the 6th from 1:00–3:00 pm ET.

Monday, May 8

World Red Cross Day

To honor the birthday of Red Cross co-founder and first-ever Nobel Peace Prize winner Henry Dunant, World Red Cross Day is celebrated to encourage people to donate both time and money to those in need. This year, the organization is celebrating the spirit of humanitarianism and volunteers who make a difference in their communities.

Scholarship search crash course

Moon Prep isn’t just helping students with the college search and applications this month—they’re also sharing their knowledge on scholarships with a 9-Day Crash Course: The Search for Scholarships webinar. Students can register now for this one taking place on Monday the 8th from 7:00–8:00 pm ET.

Sunday, May 14

Mother’s Day

Give your mom or maternal figures in your life a big hug today and make sure they know how special they are. Happy Mother’s Day!

Thursday, May 18

Live college admission Q&A

Students have a lot of questions about getting into college—and the counselors at Moon Prep have answers! They can ask anything their heart desires about college applications, essays, passion projects, and more during a live Q&A With a Moon Prep Counselor on Thursday the 18th from 8:00–9:00 pm ET.

Friday, May 19

ACT Late registration deadline

Today is the Late registration deadline for the June 10 ACT test date.

SAT scores released

Scores for the May 6 SAT test date should be released today and sent to colleges within 10 days.

Gif of Lisa from the Simpsons crossing fingers saying standardized tests over and over

The Simpsons via GIPHY

Saturday, May 20

Armed Forces Day

Today is a day to honor current active military members and their service to our country.

Monday, May 22

National Maritime Day

This year’s theme is “sustainable shipping for a sustainable planet.” Honor the service the world’s shipping business provides us by teaching students about the value of maritime colleges!

Free college applications webinar

Moon Prep is offering one last free webinar this month to help students with their college applications. They can register for Crash Course: A Step-by-Step Guide for Applying to College taking place on Monday the 22nd from 7:00–8:00 pm ET.

Tuesday, May 23

Late SAT registration deadline

Today is the Late registration deadline as well as the deadline for changes and cancellations for the June 3 SAT test date.

Sunday, May 28

Amnesty International Day

Sponsored by Amnesty International, this day promotes the work for human rights and raises awareness of the ways those rights are violated. This year’s theme is “justice for the exploited.”

  • Colleges for the Person Who Cares About the World: Are your students the next big world changers? They may be interested in these colleges that offer coursework in areas such as peace studies, conflict resolution, poverty studies, global studies, and human rights. 

Monday, May 29

Memorial Day

Today is more than just a Monday off from work and school. Remember to take a moment to honor our fallen soldiers and the sacrifices they made for our country.

Gif of American Flag heart showing up piece by piece, words thankful on Memorial Day

Hallmark via GIPHY

Wednesday, May 31

CollegeXpress easy monthly scholarship deadline

Today is the last day to enter our $1,300 Book Recommendation Scholarship! Starting Wednesday, May 1, students can register on CollegeXpress (or log back in) and answer this question in one sentence for a chance to win free money for school: What is a good book you'd recommend to a friend for the summer? 

  • Over 45 May Scholarship Opportunities to Apply ForEncourage your students to apply for even more scholarships by sharing this big list of awards with May deadlines! They're organized by grade level and listed in chronological order for easy applying. 

Have your students joined the CollegeXpress community yet? Refer them here! Just by signing up, they’ll have a chance to win not only our easy monthly scholarships but our annual $10,000 scholarship contest as well.

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