PLANNING FOR YOUR FUTURE

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1 PLANNING FOR YOUR FUTURE FIRST SEMESTER FRESHMAN YEAR If you have any questions, ask someone there are no dumb questions! Check with Mrs. Mathews or Mrs. Williams if you have any questions about your schedule or other concerns. Enjoy your high school experience, but remember that you are here to study and learn. Be sure to plan your time so that you have time to study each evening at home. Do not get behind in your coursework! Use your time in PRIDE groups to finish homework and study! If you need help, request a tutor from ASPIRE and meet with your teachers. Complete your Personal Education Plan and begin to develop a plan for after graduation. Take advantage of CIS either at school or at home to help search interests, careers, etc. Take advantage of the many activities available such as plays, dances, athletic events, and concerts! SECOND SEMESTER FRESHMAN YEAR Be certain that your second semester schedule is correct. Continue to work on your study habits. Begin thinking about the areas of study that you enjoy so that you can begin thinking about career goals after graduation. Plan a schedule for your sophomore year which includes the required courses and electives that you may be interested in. FIRST SEMESTER SOPHOMORE YEAR Sophomores in Oregon are being offered the opportunity to take the PSAT/NMSQT free of charge this year. It is an opportunity to practice taking a college admissions test and to determine areas of strength and areas that may need improvement. It is only offered in October. The test will be administered at SHS on Wednesday October 13 th. A handout will be provided to all sophomores so that you may determine whether you want to take this test. Registration for this test begins on September 28 and lasts until October 4. You must sign up in the Student Services Office if you plan to take this test. See Mrs. Mathews for more information. It is not required. Be certain that you are placed in the appropriate levels of courses, particularly in math and English. Let Mrs. Mathews know as soon as possible if you feel that you are misplaced.

2 Do your very best in all of your courses. If you fail required courses, you will need to repeat them and will be behind on credits!!!!do not let this happen to you! Begin to keep records of grades, activities, work experience, and volunteer service. Keep a file with this information. Continue working on your career folder. SECOND SEMESTER SOPHOMORE YEAR Investigate websites for career inventories type career inventory into your search engine and several sites will appear-be sure they are free. Investigate college search websites- is one of the best sites for everything related to going to college. Investigate college admissions requirements for schools you may be interested in General requirements usually include the following: 4 years of English 3-4 years of college prep math 3-4 years of social science 2-3 years of science 2-3 years of foreign language g.p.a. of at least higher is better-on a 4.00 scale academic units-a unit is 1 year of study Completion of the ACT or SAT-it is a good idea to take both.-some schools have specific score requirements. Some schools require SAT subject area tests. You may sign up on line at act.org or collegeboard.com. Make some preliminary decisions about the size, location, and type of school you are interested in-don t be too concerned about finances at this point. Keep your grades up as high as you can. Plan a schedule for your junior year that will fit with admissions requirements. Plan on some type of community service and/or work experience for the spring and summer. Some ideas are tutoring at elementary school or Boy s and Girl s Club, Habitat for Humanity, Lane County Food Bank, humane society and helping with charities like races and walks for life. If you are not already involved in activities at school, plan on getting involved no later than your junior year. Access websites for some schools-take the virtual tours and check out requirements and environment-just type in the name of the school-be sure to access the official website. If possible, plan an unofficial trip to at least one college campus and just walk around-go to the bookstore and the student center, and check out the facilities including the residence halls. Check on special programs at SHS like taking courses at the community college, work opportunities, etc.

3 Continue working on your career folder. SUMMER AFTER SOPHOMORE YEAR Investigate full or part-time jobs for the summer. Practice taking college admissions are free. Read as much as you can-novels, magazines, newspapers, etc. If possible, tour at least one more college campus. FIRST SEMESTER JUNIOR YEAR Be sure that your schedule is appropriate for your needs. It should be as challenging as you can handle-you will need the skills in college-especially reading and writing. Meet with Mrs. Mathews to establish contact and go over your plans-she needs to know you pretty well because she will play a part in the application process. Register to take the PSAT-this is a practice SAT and is available only in mid- October. Take the practice test for this on-line or the paper version. SHS will administer the test on October 13 th. You must pay the $13.00 fee in the main office and bring your receipt to Student Services in order to sign up for the test. Do this from September 28-October 4. Get involved in activities and community service and stay involved throughout the next two years. Keep your grades up-practice good study and test-taking skills-they will come in handy. Begin to narrow down your college choices to a few. Review your career assessment information, and determine classes you like and areas of interest. Keep working on your career folder. Investigate the ACT and the SAT-complete the registration on-line at act.org or collegeboard.com.. Register for at least one of these by the end of your junior year. Take practice tests on-line ahead of time so that you are very familiar with the test format-that way you will not have to waste time reading the directionsyou will already know them. If you are an athlete, artist, musician, etc. and may be looking for a college scholarship or career in these fields, begin working with teachers, mentors, and coaches to compile a portfolio and/or dvd s to showcase your talents. If you are planning on participation in Division I or II athletics, be certain that you meet the academic requirements of the NCAA. Check with Mrs. Mathews or the NCAA Clearinghouse for more information. If you are planning to apply to a military academy, meet with your counselor to develop your strategy and get the names of recruiters who can assist you with this process. Begin to identify people who can serve as references for you-some from school and some from the community-2-3 is a good number.

4 Be sure you have a resume which includes activities, honors, awards, and work experiences. Review your schedule for second semester-be sure it fits your needs. Begin thinking about a possible major in college. Check with the Aspire Coordinator, Mrs. Williams, about working with that program on college/career plans. SECOND SEMESTER JUNIOR YEAR Be certain that your schedule meets your graduation requirements as well as college admissions requirements. Continue to work on your grades and study skills. Try to narrow your college choices down even more and lock in on 2 or 3 that you are really interested in-at least one should be an assured admission. Continue to access college websites for more information. Take another admissions test-whichever one you did not take first semester. Continue with organizations, activities, and community service activities. Visit a campus that you are interested in. Begin looking for scholarship and financial aid information-your best source of financial aid is from each specific school and includes a financial aid package which usually includes grants, loans, scholarships, and work-study. Try to select a possible major in college. Be sure that your schedule for your senior year meets your needs-schedule an appointment with your counselor to go over this carefully. Complete the NCAA Clearinghouse form on-line if you are planning on competing in athletics at the Division I or II level. SUMMER AFTER JUNIOR YEAR Visit at least one more college campus-tours can usually be arranged from the college. Read, read, read. Try to prioritize your preferences for schools-select a top choice and an alternate or two. Continue working during the summer. Update your resume. FIRST SEMESTER SENIOR YEAR Be sure that your schedule for this year includes everything you need to graduate and to meet college entrance requirements. If you are deficient in any area, check with Mrs. Mathews for information about on-line options.

5 Re-take an admissions test if you need to improve your scores. Ask at least 3 people to write a letter of recommendation for you-take them a resume and give them plenty of time to complete it. It should be general enough to include both college admission and scholarship consideration unless you are applying for a specific scholarship. Apply to the school(s) you have selected-you may apply on-line or on paper-do this before the winter break in December. Apply for any scholarships available-a scholarship list is on Mrs. Mathews homepage. Mrs. Williams is the scholarship coordinator. There is a hard copy available in the ASPIRE Room. Some deadlines occur during first semester, and some during second semester. Arrange a meeting with Mrs. Mathews or Mrs. Williams to discuss these. Keep your grades up. Colleges will make decisions based on grades through first semester of this year. Plan on no grades below a C! Check the school website at siuslaw.k12.or.us and look at the Student Services page and Mrs. Mathews homepage for updates on campus events, opportunities, and scholarships. This site is updated regularly. If you are interested in attending college in Oregon, sign up for the Oregon University Systems Tour Visit at SHS on October 27. You must sign up in the Student Services Office by October 25. SECOND SEMESTER SENIOR YEAR Be sure that your schedule meets your needs. Do not slack off on coursework and grades-most colleges seriously look at final grades at the end of the senior year. Complete a Federal Financial Aid Form called the FAFSA. This is a very important document-parents will need to have income tax information available-you may estimate from previous year s income. This must be completed as early in January as possible, but not before January 1-it is available on line. If your colleges do not work out, apply to another or consider community college. Confirm your decision as soon as possible and be diligent about deadlinesthey must be met! Enjoy your final semester in high school and look forward to next year-it is a very exciting time. Arrange for a campus visit to the school you have accepted admission to-these visitations are usually in the summer.

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