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Presentation on theme: "INTRODUCTION TO THE COLLEGE COUNSELING PROCESS JUNIOR PARENT NIGHT CLASS OF 2016 Rock Ridge High School."— Presentation transcript:


2 We will learn: Who will support you and your child throughout this journey What the options are within higher education What factors are important in college admissions How you and your student can use Naviance/Family Connection to assist in college planning What steps you and your student can take now to prepare for college admission Objectives

3 Counseling Center Who’s Who Director of School Counseling Mr. Kevin Terry Class of 2016 Counselor Mrs. Ashley Bush College & Career Center Specialist Ms. Soozi Allder Counseling Registrar Mrs. Jackie Sanabria

4 The Counselor’s Role Support and encourage students’ educational goals and development Provide resources, emotional and practical support to students and parents during the college search, admission, and decision-making process Advocate for students to colleges when appropriate Write letters of recommendation and complete Secondary School Reports

5 College & Career Specialist’s Role Provide up-to-date information about the college process Assist students and families as they make decisions about college Provide information on local, national, and college admission trends and developments Establish relationships between RRHS and college admission offices Register and train students and parents on Naviance

6 The Registrar’s Role Process transcript requests (we will send over 1,000 transcripts next year) Schedule late nights for counselor Answer general questions about school Register new students Will be the first person to answer the phone/greet you in the counseling office She has a daughter who’s a junior too!

7 Options for higher education

8 Career & Technical Programs Specialized education Usually provides intensive hands-on training Apprenticeship & job placement Earn certification or licensure Ensure that the program is accredited Monroe Technology Center

9 Community Colleges  Offer Associate Degrees & Career Certificates  Guaranteed Admission Agreements to transfer to 4-year colleges or universities Guaranteed Admission Agreements  May be less expensive than many 4-year colleges or universities  Open admission with high school diploma/GED  Over 23 community colleges in Virginia –

10 4-year Colleges & Universities Students typically: Earn a Bachelor’s Degree Graduate in approximately 4 years Take ~15 credit hours (~ 5 classes) per semester Have opportunities to live on campus Offer a wide variety of academic majors Usually competitive admission

11 What factors do colleges consider in admissions?  Academic performance  Rigor of course schedule  SAT and/or ACT scores  Extracurricular involvement & leadership  Student’s personal statement and essays  Teacher’s letter of recommendation  Counselor’s letter of recommendation

12 From NACAC Admission Trend Survey, 2008

13 Academic Performance Evaluated through grades, GPA, and class rank Freshman to senior grades are important Encourage students to put forth their best effort Colleges notice changes in performance RRHS will send transcripts to colleges What appears on a student’s transcript?



16 Rigor of course schedule Colleges appreciate that students take appropriately challenging courses Honors and Advanced Placement (AP) courses Foreign Language

17 SAT & ACT Scores Standardized tests for college admission Most colleges accept both the SAT and the ACT, but check with each individual college to determine its requirements or preferencesSAT ACT Students are encouraged to take the SAT and/or the ACT at least once during their junior year What is the difference between the SAT and the ACT? *SAT/ACT Comparison Chart (handout)*

18 What are SAT Subject Tests?are SAT Subject Tests Subject-specific tests offered by the College Board Only required or recommended by a few selective colleges and universities If recommended, we encourage students to take the Subject Test Some colleges will specify which tests students should take, while others allow students to choose Literature Biology - Ecological FrenchChinese U.S. History Biology - Molecular GermanItalian World History Chemistry LatinJapanese Math Level 1 Physics SpanishKorean Math Level 2

19 Extracurricular Involvement & Leadership School and community clubs & organizations School and community sports Volunteer service Allows colleges to see student’s interests, passion, and ability outside of the classroom

20 Student’s Personal Statements & Essays Each college will have different essay prompts and requirements Common Application Essay prompts are available now! Common Application Provides students with an opportunity to share their “voice” We will give students helpful tips and resources for college essay writing, especially in English 12

21 Letters of Recommendation Letter of recommendation requirements vary Provides a glimpse into student’s work ethic, strengths, and character Ideally written by teachers who know the student well and who can attest to his/her strengths Encourage students to build strong, positive relationships with their teachers and counselor


23 What is Naviance/Family Connection? Web-based resource that supports academic, career, and college planning Includes data that is specific to our school Service linked with RRHS

24 How can we use Naviance in college planning? Obtain information about colleges Compare colleges Track college application deadlines View schedule of college visits to RRHS Create resume

25 Students and parents each have an account Obtain a registration code from College & Career Assistant, Mrs. Allder Access via the Career Center website  Naviance Naviance Establish user name (email address) and create password How do you access Naviance?

26 College Search

27 College Data & Information


29 College Visit Schedule


31 7 Important Steps for Juniors 1. Register and prepare to take the SAT and/or ACT 2. Explore academic majors and career interests 3. Research colleges and universities 4. Visit colleges and universities 5. Discuss college financing options 6. Develop a college list 7. Create and maintain resume

32 Step 1: Plan student’s testing schedule Encouraged to take the SAT and/or ACT at least once during junior year Can take each test as many times as desired, but we discourage taking it more than 2-3 times Latest recommended testing date: October or November of senior year (it takes 3-4 weeks to obtain scores) May wish to consider other events before scheduling (i.e. sports schedules, midterms or final exams, AP testing)

33 How to Register Register online at:   We have Fee Waivers! (see Ms. Allder in the Career Center) Best to register early to get your first choice of testing locations Avoid late fees by registering early – see websites for registration deadlines

34 About SAT Subject Tests Take the test as soon as possible after completing the course Can take 1-3 Subject Tests on same date Cannot take SAT Reasoning Test and the SAT Subject Tests on the same date Foreign language listening exams only offered in November Should have 2 or more years in a foreign language

35 Sending SAT & ACT Scores RRHS school code for registration is 470-140 Scores must be sent directly to colleges by College Board or ACT Send your scores to the NCAA (if applicable – code 9999) SAT Score Choice Option Students are encouraged to take advantage of sending free score reports to colleges Students can send scores later for an additional fee

36 “How can my child prepare for these tests?” Practice, practice, practice! The best test preparation is extensive reading and writing plus strong schoolwork Answer the “Question of the Day” at Practice tests (books & websites) can help with the test familiarity which can reduce test anxiety Learn test-taking strategies Use My College Quickstart (handout)

37 “What about test prep courses?” We have a free SAT prep course from College Board available  9 full length practice tests and will grade the essays  Have your student see Mr. Grzeda  Email Considerations for other options:  Cost  Number of sessions provided  Length of each session  Company’s past success in improving scores

38 Step 2: Explore Academic Majors & Careers Career Interest Profiler on Naviance Not every college offers every major It’s okay to be undecided! If so, we want to ensure he/she applies to schools that offer a wide variety of academic majors If student is fairly certain about career goal, we want to ensure he/she applies to schools that offer that major

39 Step 3: Research Colleges & Universities Encourage your child to look for the right, unique “fit” more than prestige, rankings, or what colleges their friends are considering Fit the college to your child, not your child to the college There are over 4,000 colleges and universities in the United States

40 “What should we consider when researching colleges?” Location Size Cost Career goals Academic majors Financial aid H.S. course requirements and recommendations Academic profile of admitted students Student life Diversity of student body Appearance of facilities Athletic programs Extracurricular interests Study abroad programs ROTC Dorms/residence halls Available support services The “feel” of campus

41 Step 4: Plan College Visits Plan ahead: try to visit all possible college choices Set times for: Campus Tours, Information Sessions, and Appointments with Admissions Representatives, Faculty, or Coaches *see individual college websites* The best time to visit: is when classes are in session, so you can get a glimpse of student life and activity on campus Worst times to visit: over holiday breaks, college exam periods Take notes & pictures: helps to remember and recall later in decision-making process Questions to Ask During Campus Visit (handout)

42 “ Why is it important for us to visit colleges?” Because college visits:  Allow students to get a “feel” for the college  Help students and parents to make informed decisions about where to apply  Help students to better answer the question: “Can I envision myself as a student here?”  Can serve as a motivator – visiting campus makes it more “real” When should we start to visit colleges?  The sooner the better  More exposure to colleges helps students to identify what they are looking for in a college  Visits help students to narrow down the list of colleges to which they intend to apply

43 Step 5: Discuss College Financing Options Parents are encouraged to have appropriate conversations with their children about college costs Try not to rule out any college simply because of cost Financial aid and scholarships can make some seemingly expensive colleges affordable Attend Financial Aid nights

44 Step 6: Develop a College List Students are encouraged to narrow the list of colleges to which they intend to apply to 5-7 colleges:  Safety Schools – student’s academic profile (GPA & SAT scores) are much stronger than the average profile of admitted students  Target Schools – student’s academic profile (GPA & SAT scores) are similar to the average profile of admitted students  Reach Schools – student’s academic profile (GPA & SAT scores) are weaker than the average profile of admitted students Develop this list by end of junior year (handout) For each school on their list, student should ask “If this was the only school I was admitted to, would I feel comfortable going here?”

45 Step 7: Create & Maintain a Resume College applications will request information about extracurricular activities, honors, awards, job experience Try to organize all information into a concise, neat resume for easy reference Students encouraged to provide resume when requesting letters of recommendation Easy to forget activities and honors from freshmen year – students may need your help with this!

46 Why the rush? Why so early? College admissions process can be overwhelming and stressful to many students and parents Breaking it down into smaller steps and preparing early eases anxiety along the way (checklist handout) Starting early helps students to make more informed decisions about college and to be more comfortable with those decisions

47 Glimpse into Senior Year: Admission Deadlines Regular: most common deadlines are December 15 th, January 1 st, January 15 th, February 1 st Rolling: as soon as possible, often with Priority Filing dates Early Action: November 1 st or 15 th, non-binding Early Decision: typically November 1 st or 15 th, binding Scholarship Consideration: may have earlier priority deadlines

48 What should my role be as a parent in the college planning process? Provide emotional and practical support Gently encourage your child to begin thinking about future goals and considering colleges Use Naviance – great way to facilitate conversation by researching colleges together with your child Take your child to visit colleges and participate meaningfully in their search Help them to evaluate their college options and assist in their college decision Ask questions – Mr. Terry, Mrs. Bush, and Ms. Allder are here for you and your student!

49 Helpful hints shared by other parents Be encouraging and realistic when discussing college Do not talk about college or the future every day or during every conversation Consider creating a regular time to discuss college and college planning with your child (example: once every other week) Consider having a binder or file drawer in your house to keep information you gather along the way Attend college fairs, presentations, and events with your child

50 “Ahhh…I’m not ready!” Americorps Dynamy Internship Year GlobalQuest African Leadership Academy Brown Ledge Gap Year Center For Interim Programs City Year Class Afloat CIEE (Council on International Educational Exchange) Cultural Embrace El Casal The Gap-Year Advantage Global Learning Across Borders Global Links (Austra Learn) LEAPNow Magic Carpet Rides MASA Israel Journey Projects Abroad Rustic Pathways Sea~Mester Sojourns Abroad Taking Off Thames Academy Thinking Beyond Borders Where there be Dragons The Woolman Semester Young Judaea Youth International GAP YEAR PROGRAMS

51 Scheduling Week of February 2 nd – teachers submit course recommendations for senior year Week of February 10 th – students will make initial course selections for senior year Week of February 16 th – teachers talk with students about recommendations and course selections Week of March 2 nd – parents can come to speak with teachers about classes for next year  Look for more info to come soon March – June: I spend tons of time with your Phoenix!

52 Scheduling Continued Last day to change course selections is June 16 th (last day of school)  This is a very firm deadline  Will determine courses offered/placement for next year  Cannot make a course selection change after this date  I will call in August if there’s a schedule conflict

53 Upcoming Events Counselor Late Nights: By appointment only!  Every Thursday from 4:30pm – 7:30pm  Each appointment is half an hour  Call the counseling office and speak with Mrs. Sanabria to schedule: (703) 996-2107  To talk about scheduling, senior year, college, testing, and much more April 17 th – 22 nd : Mrs. Bush attends PCACAC Conference



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