Plan for the Year Ahead
- Take the PSAT 8/9 test at school. Practice leads to perfection! Save your test booklets and score report sheet! These will be helpful for future study guides for both the PSAT and SAT.
- Meet with your guidance counselor to discuss your graduation plan.
- Review your high school schedule with her to make sure you’re enrolled in challenging classes that will help you prepare for college. Colleges prefer four years of English, history, math, science, and a foreign language.
- Start a folder where all awards, honors, etc. can be placed for use on your resume and applications.
- Get more involved with your extracurricular activities.
- Decide which community service projects you prefer most and try to stick to one or two so you can show over your four years of high school a commitment to this organization or cause. Colleges will be impressed with significant community service hours (40+) as it shows investment in one’s community and that will translate to investment in the college community.
Learn About Colleges
- Visit colleges while they’re in session.
- Go to college fairs in your area.
- Find out about college firsthand from college friends who are home for the holidays.
Explore Summer Opportunities
- Look for a great summer opportunity — job, internship, or volunteer position. Summer is a great time to spend a day shadowing someone whose career you have thought about pursuing. Want to be a dentist? Ask to spend a day with a local dentist. Want to do research? Ask a local college if you can shadow someone in one of their research departments.
- Check with your guidance counselor and search online for summer school programs for high school students at colleges. Almost every college in the country offers some type of program for high school students. This is a great way to get on campus and investigate colleges.