If you want to get a head start on financial aid for the 2023-24 school year, open your FAFSA (The Free Application for Federal Student Aid) now.
Most public state universities and private colleges and universities use the FAFSA to determine eligibility for financial aid. Submit your FAFSA as soon as possible because aid is allocated on a first-come, first-served basis until funds run out. So, apply early to give yourself the best chance to receive the funds your family will need to pay for college.
The FAFSA may seem overwhelming, but help is available. Start by looking at the FAFSA on the Web Worksheet to see what’s required. Gather the information and documents required to apply for financial aid. Reach out to your guidance or college counselor with any questions— they will get you started by either guiding you themselves or directing you to any number of free resources availabl
The most important thing is to apply so you don’t miss out on any opportunity. Even if you’re not sure you’ll qualify, apply.
Seniors, if you haven’t completed all of your standardized testing or would like the opportunity to try again and improve your score(s), you still have time to do so. These are the test dates remaining for 2022 and the respective registration and late registration deadlines:
October 1st SAT by September 20th (late registration)
October 22nd ACT by September 30th (late registration)
November 5th SAT by October 7th and October 25th (late registration)
December 3rd SAT by November 3rd and November 22nd (late registration)
December 10th ACT by November 4th and November 11th (late registration)
Although Early Decision applications are due early to mid-November, many schools will hold off on processing your application until the September, October and possibly November test scores are released. Check with individual school Admissions to confirm score submission deadlines for Early Decision applications. For Regular Decision applications, also please consult the school website or call Admissions to verify the last test date that will be accepted in order to meet the deadlines.
How do you become college ready? Being college ready means knowing how to be an effective student. It’s a process that you will work on throughout your high school years.The skills you need to be an effective high school student are the same ones you will need to succeed in college, wherever you choose to attend.
Right now, college may seem distant, yet it’s never too early to start or continue developing the following skills:
To do this start by:
Identifying your strengths and weaknesses
Committing to working diligently
Being open minded
Trying new things
Meet with your guidance counselor to become acquainted. The better your counselor knows you, the more effective they can be in helping you to navigate your way and devise an academic plan that’s best for you. Things you may want to talk about with your counselor include:
Planning your academic path, including the courses you hope to take
Choosing extracurricular activities, both in and out of school
Any specific needs you may have including testing accommodations, the need for a quiet study space and/or extra help with course work
Standardized testing and whether to test or not
Really, what’s best to keep in mind is to assert your independence and take ownership of your high school experience. Ask for help when you need it, but remember that ultimately, you are the one responsible for making sure you are college ready.
A few thoughts if you’re scheduled to take the ACT tomorrow.
To minimize your stress in the morning, it’s a great idea to get organized ahead of time. The last thing you need on test day is a desperate scramble. These are some of the things you can do the night before to get your big day off to a great start:
First, check with your parents to make sure they know when and where you’re scheduled to take the test, and arrange how you’ll get to the test center. Next, gather and pack all the things you’ll need to take with you. Some of the things on this check list are “must-have” items, while others are optional.
REQUIRED: Don’t forget any of the following items or it will be a long ride home!
An approved calculator
Sharpened #2 pencils
An acceptable form of photo ID
Your admission or standby ticket
Extra batteries for your calculator
Watch (to keep track of time)
Set your alarm, get a good night’s sleep and have a healthy, satisfying breakfast.
It’s a new school year! Whether you’re just beginning high school or looking forward to your graduation now is the time to set yourself up for a successful school year.
Juniors and Seniors, you’re going to have many demands on your time as you also focus on your college process. Freshman and Sophomores, while college may seem far in the future, the best way for you to become college ready is to work hard and be the best student possible.
Regardless of which grade you’re in, as you get to know your teachers and become familiar with your course requirements, challenge yourself to dive in with your best efforts. If you start off strong you’ll avoid having to play catch-up later in the semester.
Try to set some goals, be open minded and give something new a try, and get involved at school and in your community.
Parents, before you know it, your child will be starting their first day of college!
Set your child up for success by sharing with them some practical knowledge.
Help them to understand how to establish and live by a budget.
Decide who is paying for what: dorm or rent, meals, books, transportation, phone service, insurance (health and car), spending money.
Set up a bank account with a debit and/or credit card. Talk about payment options, including late fees, finance charges and the importance of paying on time in order to begin to establish a strong credit rating.
Create mobile payment accounts such as Venmo and Zelle.
Give your child a copy of their health/prescription/dental identification card and make a list of contact info for their primary care physician, any specialists and dentist.
Locate a pharmacy local to school and help your child transfer any prescriptions to the new pharmacy.
If you would like to have access to your child’s medical information from new physicians they see on or off campus, ask your son or daughter to remember to sign a HIPAA release form.
If your student will be preparing some or all of their meals, review how to shop for groceries and how to prepare basic foods.
Teach your son or daughter how to sew on a button, and even how to iron a shirt or pair of pants.
Going off to college is a major event. As you prepare to go away, here are some suggestions for what you can do to get ready:
Choose your freshman classes. Think about what you’d like to learn and also consider course requirements. Read more about specific classes by looking through the course syllabus online to confirm you’re interested in what the instructor plans to cover.
Understand your tuition payment options. Some schools offer plans allowing you to spread out your payments.
If you have been awarded work study as part of your financial aid package inquire about how to apply for on and off-campus jobs.
If your parents’ health insurance covers you at college, make sure to opt out of the school’s coverage before the deadline.
Make a budget. Have a conversation with your parents to work out what they will be paying for and what you will be responsible for.
Set up a bank account and apply for a debit and/or credit card.
Schedule your physical and make sure you have any required immunizations. As your doctor to complete all required forms and make sure you submit them on time.
Some schools assign specific move-in dates and times to their students. Make sure you’re aware of any designated schedule. Move-in often takes longer than expected. Decide if your parents will be staying over and, if so, make hotel reservations.
Schools often provide programming and events for parents during the move-in day(s). Don’t forget to ask your parents to sign up for events they may be interested in attending.
Fall/Homecoming weekend is probably one of the busiest weekends at school and the surrounding community be sure to make hotel and dinner reservations now so your family is not scrambling at the last minute.