Montgomery High School Guidance presents . . . Getting Ready for Senior Year May 22, 2012
MHS Guidance Department • Mrs. Apel ext 6168 • Mr. Glock ext 6164 • Ms. Ritson ext 6172 • Ms. Hampton ext 6165 • Ms. Pino ext 6167 • Ms. Musial ext 6166 • Ms. Watson ext 6163
The College Scoop:What Parents Should Know Key pointers from your guidance department on navigating an often trying time in the process...
Stay Calm • Teenagers can sometimes sense a parent’s anxieties • Teenagers can often sense a parent’s favorite school • Teenagers can also sense whether or not this is their choice
Know where to find information • On the Family Connection website! • In the high school guidance office • Your child’s counselor (e-mail is quick) • From asking your son/daughter about what is on the morning announcements!
Spell out your guidelines • Cost • Location (distance and cost of travel) • Atmosphere (party school?) • Stress/difficulty level
Get Organized! • Use Family Connection • Make a list of “things to do”
Negotiating “the List” of Prospective Colleges • Continue to gather info • Know college admissions requirements • Self-assess: Do I meet college requirements? • List should contain a balanced range of “reaches” “targets” and “safeties”
Finish upAdmissions Testing • Know what tests you need to take…SAT , Subject Tests, ACT • Applying early? • Finish required testing – follow college guidelines • Subject Tests required? • Send SAT and ACT scores to the colleges you will apply to after all testing is completed. Scores are sent directly from Collegeboard or ACT
Get On the Road… • Visits are the most important part of your college search • Eliminate misperceptions • Learn what you didn’t know! • Interview, if offered!
Assist with college visitations Most young people need a little push to get them started on visits to campuses. If they seem reluctant, encourage them just to take a drive.
Things Your Counselor Needs … “Student Brag sheet” and “Parent Point of View” done in Naviance so your counselor can write your recommendation. Get an unofficial copy of your transcript for reference – you’ll need it for Rutgers SRAR! Gather Materials
Review Application Materials • Look at the apps! • Know what each app requires you to send (special deadlines, honorsprograms etc.) • Don’t get surprised!
Looking Ahead to the Fall… • What are pink cards? • They let your counselorknow that you intend to apply to a school • Basically, they signal toyour counselor to sendtranscript, school profileand recommendation
What’s Coming? • Pink cards are due At least 15 SCHOOL days before application deadline. • This past year, all pink cards for schools with Jan. 1st deadlines were due to Guidance on Dec. 3rd. • Ask teachers to send teacher recommendations well in advance of deadlines. Ask when to ask for recs… • Teachers sometimes send materials separately from guidance materials – and that’s OK!!!
Complete your Applications • Online • Essays are critical! • Save a copy • Get this done early!!!!!!!!!! • Last Second Apps are dangerous! • Beware of the crashing website
Acing the EssayThe Art of Selling Yourself through your essay… • Make sure your authentic voice comes through – loudly and persuasively. • There is really no trick – It’s digging deep and trying to figure out what makes you interesting. • Colleges are looking for thoughtful, earnest presentations that shows solid interests and critical thinking.
Acing the EssayThe Art of Selling Yourself through your essay… • Brainstorm with family/friends on what to write about. - What matters to you? - How do you spend your free time? • Show, don’t tell. Use examples and anecdotes. • Be polite (but not too humble). • Ask someone to read your essay, and say, “Does it sound like me?” It should!!! • Encourage your child to not wait to the last minute to do the essay. Mastering the art of selling yourself takes practice and time.
Jekyll and Hyde????? • Appropriate email address and voicemail greeting? • Great summer pictures on Facebook? • Will your child show photos to mom and dad? • Advice: Many admissions staffers (fairly recent graduates themselves) check out social networking sites. Keep it clean and professional.
Emergency!! The College Didn’t Get My Stuff!! • Relax! Things take time! • Check on-line: Naviance Succeed/Family Connection • Have your child contact individual college
Find Financial Aid • Attend MTSD Financial Aid Workshop – in December • Complete the FAFSA as soon as possible after Jan.1st to qualify for need-based aid (www.fafsa.ed.gov) • Investigate merit aid programs at your colleges • Complete college financial aid forms • Watch for the Montgomery Township “United Scholarship Applications” • Check Guidance Website for local scholarships
MORE FINANCIAL AID WEBSITES • The financial aid on the Internet • www.finaid.org • Federal Student Aid Homepage • www.studentaid.ed.gov • Education tax incentives (IRS) • www.irs.gov/publications/p970 • NJ Higher Education Student Assistance Authority • www.hesaa.org
Have a Great Senior Year! • Stick with your academic program! • Get your best grades. • Mid-year grades might be requested by colleges! • Let your counselor know about awards or honors you receive…..to share with your prospective colleges! • Keep guidance informed about the outcome of your application process. • Thank those who helped you reach your goals!
Last, but not least... You WILL Survive!