As a high-school student, one of the best resources you can utilize is your high-school counselor. Counselors are equipped to help you with the college search and answer any or all of your questions about the process. Here are a few things you will want to talk about with your counselor:
As you progress through high school, seek your guidance counselor’s assistance as you choose your classes. Different colleges have different requirements. Some even have suggested academic plans, so communicate with your counselor early on what your plans are for college. With your goals in mind, your counselor can help you navigate your high school course selection.
Ask your counselor when your high school, or a nearby high school, is hosting a college fair.
These fairs are ideal for finding out information about a lot of different schools at one time. Typically, a high school hosts a fair, and representatives from colleges come to talk to you about their school.
College fairs are a great time to ask questions and even apply to many different schools. And they’re convenient, since the college representatives come to you. Take advantage of college fairs, and go to as many as possible
One of the most important documents you will need to apply to schools is your high school transcript. Make sure this document makes it to each school you apply to! Your counselor can help you with this process and insure that your transcript gets to the correct places.
SAT and ACT
Taking standardized tests can be stressful. You want to do well, and you may feel as though everything hinges on this one exam. Talking to your counselor about the SAT, ACT, or any other standardized test can help you see the big picture and even help you feel more relaxed about the exam.
Counselors can also help you figure out when the best time to take the test is and if taking it two or three times would be beneficial to you.
When you are ready to start visiting college campuses, let your counselor know. She may be able to give you helpful hints and insider knowledge. Your counselor may also be able to help you identify the best time to visit schools. For example, she may know when schools are having open houses or other events geared towards prospective students.
College isn’t cheap. Ask your counselor if she knows of any scholarships that you can start applying for. High school counselors often know of local scholarships, as well as be able to provide a list of websites where you can go to find out more scholarship opportunities.
If you have an idea of what you’d like to do in the future, talk to your counselor about your aspirations, passions, and goals. Your counselor will be able to help you decide which extracurricular activities to get involved with and how to choose a major and college that will put you on the best path for your future career.
Don’t wait for your counselor to reach out to you. Be proactive in initiating a meeting. Your counselor is there for you, but she may not know how to best help you unless you share your specific goals and concerns. If attending college is the next step for you, use this checklist to make sure you’re on the right track!