There are many reasons why you may have a low grade point average (GPA) in high school. Whether you were forced to hold a job and didn't have time for school, were ill and had your grades suffer or simply didn't put as much effort into your homework as you could have, it's still possible for you to enter college and start a successful career. Focusing on your work experience and extracurricular activities, as well as writing the best essay possible, are a few ways to better your chances of being accepted into a school.

Emphasize work experience when filling out college applications. Include details on your current and past jobs, such as position, duties and dates of employment. This can be especially helpful if you have already worked in the field you want to study. For example, medical transcription work will look good on your application if you want to enter medical school.

Write a great essay to show the school your writing skill and determination level, along with teaching them about you through your words. Use your essay to explain possible reasons that you may not have done so well in high school. You can choose to focus on your physical problems, mental state or family issues. Talk about how you've changed over the years and what will allow you to do better in school this time around.

Focus on any extracurricular activities in which you've taken part. Sports, clubs and volunteering should all be included. This portion of your application can show your character as a hard-working and determined person. Sharing these activities can also serve as an explanation for not doing very well in school if you were simply overwhelmed.

Apply to a community college. Most of these schools don't have a GPA requirement and accept everyone who applies. Use this opportunity to get your foot in the door. You can then work on improving your college GPA. Do well in your classes and ask your professors if they'd be willing to write you letters of recommendation to be used when you apply to a four-year university.