For Seniors - College and Career Planning for Seniors
Attention Seniors: Beginning Monday, February 22, the school district will be using a new mail service. Due to the new procedures it is imperative the Guidance Office receive requests for scholarships and/or transcripts five school days in advance to ensure time to get mail postmarked on time to meet deadlines.
The following are a list of recommendations from the SHS Guidance Office to help you stay on track your senior year.
For students who want to attend college, trade, or technical school:
- Search for schools that offer programs in your intended field(s) of study. Some on-line resources that may be helpful include: www.collegeboard.com, www.act.org, www.EducationPlanner.org, www.bridges.com, www.fastweb.com, and www.college.gov., www.collegeview.com, www.petersons.com.
- Narrow your list of colleges, trade or technical schools to between five and ten. Make a calendar with application deadlines and fees for each institution. Attend Open House/Visitation Days or speak to a college representative from as many schools on your list as possible. Once you have narrowed your choices to between three to five schools, apply to the institutions. Applying online is preferred.
- Each college/school application will require a transcript to be sent directly from the Guidance Office to the institution. Be sure to complete a transcript request form at least five business days in advance of any application due date.
- Register and take the SAT and/or ACT. For more information check on-line at www.collegeboard.com, www.act.org and www.EducationPlanner.org. Determine if your scores needs to be sent directly from the testing company or whether a copy may be submitted with your transcript.
- Complete your Student Information Sheet (available from your English teacher and/or the Guidance Office) and submit it to the Guidance Office. When you ask a teacher for a letter of recommendation, ask for a copy of your Student Information Sheet and provide it to the teacher so he/she can make your letter more personal. Some schools require a specific form be completed by the recommender, be sure to include the form with your request. You may also ask for an open letter of recommendation that can be copied and sent to several schools. Also ask the teacher to make a version of the letter that can be used for scholarships. Originals can be kept on file in the Guidance Office.
- Use the Scholarship Search at www.collegeboard.com, www.fastweb.com or www.myfreedegree.com to find out about scholarships. Companies that ask you to pay for the opportunity to apply for scholarships are likely to be a scam.
- Complete the FAFSA form as soon after January 1st as possible during your senior year. This can be done on a secure site on-line at www.FAFSA.ed.gov. Use the FAFSA4caster to help plan for the financial challenges of higher education.
- Once you have decided which school to attend, send in your deposit to reserve your place. Contact the other schools that have accepted you in writing to let them know you have chosen to go to another school. This may allow them to offer another student admission.
- The college you have selected to attend will receive a final transcript from the Guidance office after graduation. Be sure to maintain good grades throughout the year.
- If you intend on playing sports at the collegiate level, be sure to register at www.ncaaclearinghouse.com. After registering you will need to download forms that authorize the release of your transcript to the NCAA. Be sure to have both the student and parent signature on this form when you submit it to the Guidance Office for processing. Please allow five business days to process this transcript request.
For students who desire full-time employment after graduation:
- Take the opportunity to shadow in the area of employment that you want to pursue. This may help you to decide for or against pursuing a specific occupation.
- Many jobs require some type of training and require new employees to fulfill the guidelines of a probationary period. Be sure you know what the employer will require of you before you accept the job.
- Near the end of your senior year begin contacting employment agencies and/or enroll in the Pennsylvania Career Link service (www.pacareerlink.state.pa.us).
- Create or update your resume in order to be prepared as you learn of new employment opportunities. You can construct a resume using www.bridges.com. (Log in information is available in the Guidance Office.)
- Most employers are willing to train you if you are willing to be at work everyday and on time. Make sure you get in this habit now.
For students who want to enter a branch of military service:
- Contact a recruiter for the specific branch of interest. Local information can be found on-line. US Army (www.goarmy.com), US Navy (www.navy.com), US Air Force (www.airforce.com), US Marines (www.Marines.com), US Coast Guard (www.gocoastguard.com), US Merchant Marine (www.usmma.edu), ROTC (www.military.com/ROTC) .
- Find out when the ASVAB (Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery) is being administered at SHS and how to prepare for the test. Your scores will determine what jobs you can choose from in each branch of service. More information and on-line preparation for this and other standardized tests can be accessed at www.march2success.com and www.asvabprogram.com.
- If you are applying for an appointment to a military academy, you will need a nomination from a local Congressman. Contact your local legislator’s office to get the application and find out the deadlines for application.