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Planning for Your Future: A Guide to the “I am the One” Student Planner. College Planner. This planner offers information about: meeting high school requirements, researching careers, investigating colleges & universities, and planning your future.

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Presentation Transcript
college planner
College Planner

This planner offers information about:

  • meeting high school requirements,
  • researching careers,
  • investigating colleges & universities, and
  • planning your future.

Though we have many resources available to help you, only one person can make it all happen: YOU!

standard diploma
Standard Diploma

Guidelines for these requirements may be found on the Virginia Department of Education website doe.virginia.govunder “Graduation Requirements.”

benefits of taking ap courses
Benefits of Taking AP Courses

Credit - students actually earn hours toward their college degree

Placement – students can skip intro courses and move on to advanced classes

Benefits of Taking AP Courses

1. Fewer classes to take means you get more time to study, participate in campus life, or travel.

2. You could complete your degree in less time, saving you and your family money.

3. Many colleges consider scores when you apply for admissions or scholarships.

financial aid
Financial Aid lists scholarships and grants available to Virginia students gives you information about applying for federal student aid programs, including the FAFSA can help you figure out how to pay for college

freshman checklist
Freshman Checklist

Create your personal résumé file.

Choose courses that meet graduation requirements and will prepare you for college. Remember your GPA counts in ALL subjects.

Start exploring your interests and possible careers. For free career assessment tools visit

Consider taking courses that will earn you college credit.

sophomore checklist
Sophomore Checklist

Learn more about the PSAT. (Visit for free practice tests, fee information, and testing dates.)

Make sure you’re on track with required classes.

Talk with your older friends about their plans for college.

Keep your grades up, and join clubs, teams, and organizations.

Volunteer in your community - it’s a good thing to do!

junior checklist
Junior Checklist

Sign up to take the PSAT. This year, your score counts toward the National Merit program.

Learn more about different majors and what schools have the best programs in those majors.

Download a free copy of the NCAA Guide for the College-Bound Student-Athlete.

Start visiting campuses or take virtual tours.

Sign up for the SAT I and II and/or ACT. Be sure to find out which test scores your chosen colleges require.

Prepare by taking practice tests online at or

senior checklist fall
Senior Checklist - Fall

Keep looking for scholarships and grants.

Make a list of your top target schools. Schedule campus visits and find out about early admission.

Review admissions requirements for your college choices and compare them to where you are on grades and test scores.

Start applying to colleges in October.

Have teachers and extracurricular advisors write recommendations for you.

Get a copy of the FAFSA and ask your parents to start gathering their financial information.

senior checklist spring
Senior Checklist - Spring

Submit your FAFSA no later than Feb. 15! Be sure to keep a copy for your records.

Review deadlines and start applying to college!

Have first-term transcripts sent to your target schools.

If you completed the FAFSA, review the Student Aid Report (SAR) you’ll receive in March.

In April, make your final decision on a college!

Review the financial aid package from your selected college, and pay required deposit(s).

Take any recommended AP exams.

senior checklist summer
Senior Checklist - Summer

Ask the admissions and/or financial aid offices at your chosen school if they have everything they need.

Ask your school counselor to send your final transcript to your college.

Over the summer, pre-register for classes if you can. Be sure to speak to an advisor if you have questions.

If possible, attend an orientation session on your new campus so you’ll feel more comfortable when you arrive in the fall.

testing 101
Testing 101

The PSAT is a rehearsal for the SAT and is used to select students for the National Merit and National Achievement scholarships.

The SAT Reasoning Test is a standard way of measuring a student’s ability to do college-level work.

SAT II Subject Tests measure your skills in specific subjects such as math, history, or science.

For more information, including dates, fees, and free practice tests, visit

testing 10114
Testing 101

The ACT is a national college admission exam that allows students to prepare for the test. For more information, visit

Check with your preferred college to see if you are required to take the SAT or the ACT.

The Compass Test helps college personnel place you in courses appropriate for your skill level. Most Virginia Community Colleges use this test. For tips and sample questions, visit

why go to college
Why Go to College?

College graduates earn about $20,000 more per year than high school grads.

A high school dropout will earn $1 million less than a college graduate over their lifetime.

A college degree increases your chances of employment by almost half.

The fastest-growing careers require a college degree.

There are more jobs for educated workers than there are qualified people to fill them.

Jobs for college graduates typically offer perks like health insurance and retirement plans.

Higher level of education = Better standard of living

If you go to college, your children and grandchildren are more likely to go too.

web resources
Web Resources


I am the


State Council of Higher Education for

Virginia Depart. of

U.S. Depart. of

American Council on

  • FastWeb
  • FinAid
  • (Remember, to receive any kind of federal financial aid you must complete the FAFSA each year.)
  • Virginia Wizard
www i am the one com

Any questions or comments?

This project was developed by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia under a grant from the U.S. Department of Education. The contents do not necessarily represent the policy of the DOE, and you should not assume endorsement of the federal government.