Author: Cornish, Susan
Every year, many people set goals for the coming year. One popular goal for high school students is to get into one of their top-choice colleges or universities. This is easier said than done, and it does require hard-work and dedication.
Unfortunately for many, the fire and motivation to reach this goal wavers a few months into the year, and it is easy to lose focus. Here is some advice to help you get into that school of your choice.
One of the first things that you should do is think about what major or majors you are interested in pursuing. The last thing that you want to do is have your heart set on attending a specific University, and realize that they don’t offer your major.
Research Top Choice Schools
You should also look into the culture, cost and admission requirements of prospective colleges.
Decide what you want from your college career. Do you want to attend a private liberal arts school with a great music program to participate in? Are you interested in attending a school with a strong athletics program? Do you want large or small class sizes? These are just a few of the questions you should ask yourself before making your list.
Cost is another big issue. Be sure that you are aware how much your education is going to cost and if you are going to be able to afford it. Look into financial aid, scholarship opportunities and reciprocity.
Admission requirements are the last and most important thing to look at prior to applying. Check out what the average GPA, ACT and SAT score are for those admitted. This will help you rank your schools in the three following categories: reach schools, match schools and safety schools.
Choose a few schools from each category, and begin applying.
Continue Achieving Academically & Take Challenging Courses
You need to make sure that you continue to achieve academically. This doesn't necessarily mean getting a 4.0 when you are taking English, shop, home economics, physical education and pre-algebra.
Challenge yourself. Take upper level math and science classes. Try taking a foreign language like Spanish or German. If your high school offers AP classes or college level classes, you should take these classes to better prepare for higher education.
These types of classes will look better on a college application, plus they will help give you a strong foundation for college.
If you are really hoping to get into one of your reach schools, it is important to get involved in leadership positions or extra-curricular activities. Being a well-rounded student that can balance school and other activities is something that colleges look for during the admissions process. Try getting involved in your community volunteering, join a club or committee at your school or take up a Varsity sport.
Prepare for the ACT and SAT
You also want to be sure that you are preparing for the ACT or SAT prior to taking it. Some students make the mistake going into these exams with little to no preparation. By preparing for the test, you know what to expect which can relieve nerves and improve your test score.
Try taking a practice test or better yet, sign up for college prep courses to help you achieve the highest score that you can. College Nannies and Tutors in Powell offers college test preparation courses to help you go into your ACT or SAT with confidence.
Many times ACT and SAT scores are a big “tie-breaker” for scholarships or entrance to your reach schools. At CNT, 95% of students that prepare for the ACT or SAT with a CNT tutor improve their score.
Getting involved, taking upper level courses and preparing for your college entrance exam will help you achieve your goals. Make this New Year Resolution to get into one of your top choice schools a reality.