Mid-Summer College Counseling Update for the Class of 2017!


Dear Seniors,

Oh Yeah!!  That means you.  Can you believe it?  Get used to it.

Now for the not so good news.  The summer is more than halfway over.  In 31 days you will be experiencing the first day of your Senior year.  This year will go by fast and it will be busy.

I have a few tips to help your year be more enjoyable and carefree.


Finalize your list of colleges. If you don’t know where you want to apply yet, go road tripping!  Start the common app essay of your choice while you wait to decide which you want to apply to so you are at least a major step ahead in the application process. (See list at end of email.)  Link to Article with advice on writing your college application essay.

TIP #2

Stay organized! Make your spreadsheet tracker for college applications. College App Tracking Sheet.

TIP #3

If you know where you would like to apply to college, do it in the the next 31 days!  Applying early will free up significant time this fall and you may find out before Christmas whether or not you are accepted. Be sure you know the difference between early decision and early action before you choose one of these.  If the school utilizes Common App you should use it! See next week’s correspondence for how to notify the Guidance Office of your application to have your transcript sent.  Important Note:  CommonApp does not open for 16-17 application season until August 1. However, you can do the basic demographic info section and roll it over.

TIP #4

Sign up for the ACT (http://www.actstudent.org) and/or  SAT (http://www.collegeboard.com ) for the fall NOW!  This is especially important for any of you seniors who haven’t taken one of these two tests yet.  If this is your first time taking the test you should sign up for the first test date offering.  Get the Princeton Review ACT review book and visit http://www.tutorme.com for review help.  (Promo code DAYTONCHRISTIAN might still work.) Don’t forget to send official ACT or SAT scores from your online ACTStudent or College Board account to the colleges you are applying to.  Most colleges only count scores as official when they come directly from the testing service.

TIP #5

Request your teacher recommendations if needed for your college application.  You should check the admission page for the university or the admissions tab in Naviance to determine if you will actually need a teacher recommendation. Remember, always ask your teacher in person prior to requesting their recommendation through Naviance. (UPDATE: We just heard that the teacher recommendation portal is receiving an update in Naviance so hold off until August 10th to add new requests.)

TIP #6

If you aren’t sure what you want to be when you grow up.  (Or in a few short years.) Take some time to explore careers and do the career interest survey in Naviance.

TIP # 7

Spend time each week searching for scholarships! Search for scholarships  on Naviance or on http://www.fastweb.com/ .No matter what your family’s financial situation, your parents are certainly thinking about how to finance your college education. Your parents can complete a Net Price Calculator online for each college you are considering. This will give them an estimate of what each college will cost. While this does not take into account merit-based scholarships, it gives you a starting point.

TIP #8

Enjoy the rest of this summer!!!

If you need anything, I am in the office Monday – Thursday from 8 AM – 4 PM.  You should call ahead to make an appointment as I often have meetings and other events scheduled during the day.


2016-2017 Common App Essay Prompts

  1. Some students have a background, identity, interest, or talent that is so meaningful they believe their application would be incomplete without it. If this sounds like you, then please share your story.
  2. The lessons we take from failure can be fundamental to later success. Recount an incident or time when you experienced failure. How did it affect you, and what did you learn from the experience?
  3. Reflect on a time when you challenged a belief or idea. What prompted you to act? Would you make the same decision again?
  4. Describe a problem you’ve solved or a problem you’d like to solve. It can be an intellectual challenge, a research query, an ethical dilemma – anything that is of personal importance, no matter the scale. Explain its significance to you and what steps you took or could be taken to identify a solution.
  5. Discuss an accomplishment or event, formal or informal, that marked your transition from childhood to adulthood within your culture, community, or family.

Colleges that are not utilizing Common App will have their own individual essay.