I'm only going to start college next year, but having just gone through the admissions process, this is what i have to say...
above all else, do the type of art you love. if you find yourself in the midst of a project wondering why you're wasting your time, chances are you are doing that project to please a school and not yourself.
one thing i found really helpful was the national portfolio day events; i really got a feel for what each college i was considering was looking for and i got lots of good crit on my portfolio. plus the reps remember you (at least, in my case they did?), which can be good for follow up interviews. www.npda.org
, i think...
why not include photography?
also, one thing i'm doing to get insider info on my college is making posts and asking questions on the college's community livejournal. the students there have so much more information to share than the admissions and housing people.
hope this helps:)