Summertime is a nice break from school for both students and their parents. But, if you have a soon to be high school senior, summer is also a time to work! Meaning now is a great time to start thinking and planning for college.
James Montoya is the Vice President for Higher Education at the College Board. He says if we have children about to enter their senior years of high school and wan to go to college, we should be actively working on that college plan. It all begins with building a college list. Look at what the different requirements are of colleges and universities your children are interested in, and pick some that your child is likely to be admitted. Also, choose some that your child may really want to attend, but that may be more difficult to get into.
"That is really what's important -- that there be a range of schools -- so that at the end of the process, a student has two to three offers of admission from which to make a selection. As well as if they're applying for financial aid, two to three financial aid packages that they're able to consider," explains Montoya.
Financial aid is a big deal. Montoya says two-thirds of students who are undergraduates today receive some sort of financial aid. And, as you have probably noticed, college costs seem like they are going up all the time. So, be sure to look at the different financial aid options available. We should also have a conversation with our children regarding college costs. They need to know what is affordable and what isn't. We should work together when it comes to looking for different financial aid options. Also, help your child stay focused during this last year of high school. Montoya says college admissions folks really do pay attention to the senior year schedules. They should be tough and challenging -- no senior-itis! And, start making a plan for recommendations. Different colleges and universities require different things. Consider which teachers you may want to help your child with those and get everything organized so that it's easy for people writing the recommendations.
Lots of things to be thinking about! For more information on college admission policies and the requirements of different colleges, click here .
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