Greetings students! So happy you stopped by the HTGTC Blog! Going to college is a big commitment and with that comes huge rewards! As a student who has completed college and is now in graduate school, I am delighted to share my tips on how you can best prepare. The keyword I am going to stress to you is simple: PREPARE!
Here are a few tips you can all use on your journey to college:
Do your research—look into schools that interest you and explore their major options. Keep in mind how aligned each college and its majors are with your own personal, academic, and career goals. Visit college websites for starters and take a campus tour of any school that really jumps out at you. Also, note all deadlines for each school, not only for admission, but for scholarships and financial aid information. A good example of one tool you can use for college preparation, planning, and applying is www.CSUmentor.edu
Also, be responsible for yourself and stay informed! In college, you won’t always have mom, dad, and teachers staying on you about handling your business. You have to be responsible for you, and develop self-discipline. Take control of your education now and I promise you won’t regret it!
At my high school, the requirements to graduate were the same as the requirements to apply to a CSU, so more than 95% of my graduating class went to a community college or university right after graduating. It was expected of us by our teachers, parents and classmates to pursue higher education. At my school, you could take a maximum of seven classes per year, and I took seven every year except my senior year. I took Honors Chemistry, AP Environmental Science and AP Studio Art over the course of my high school education. I was enrolled in AVID, a four year program designed to help students prepare and apply to college. AVID gave me a support system and tons of resources for information about colleges, and helped me become more organized and take fantastic notes.
However, not everything was smooth sailing. I always struggled with math, and failed English my sophomore year, which is usually my strongest subject. After making it up in summer school, I was once again eligible to apply to college, and applied to several state schools. I finished with a 3.2 GPA, and was accepted to every school I applied to. Even after making a few mistakes, I never gave up on my dream to go to college and have a wonderful career, and now I’m working hard to graduate in a few more years.
I remember one of the most stressful times of my senior year was waiting to hear back from which colleges I had been accepted to. From November to early March, I spent my days anticipating when I would get that letter or that e-mail. I started worrying about whether I would be able to get into college, whether my GPA was high enough, what I would do if I hadn’t been accepted to any colleges, and so much more. I’m sure many of you are feeling the same way right now. I am here to give you good news! Here are some ways you can get your mind off things while being productive:
- Look for scholarships online and or through your high school counselor
- Volunteer at a local organization
- Pick up a good book to read
- Join a club (either on-campus or off-campus)
Whatever you do, don’t just sit and waste your time! Go out and learn something!