• Freshman Year Timeline

    Career (W), College (C), Service Academy (S), Military (M), Athlete (A)

    9th Grade

    Fall [August – November]

    Get involved!

    (C | S | A) Being involved in high school allows you to get the most out of your high school experience. Here’s something else you should know: extracurriculars also play a part when you apply to colleges. Most college applications ask about your activities because the things you do in your free time reveal a lot about you in ways that grades and test scores can’t. Your accomplishments outside the classroom show what you’re passionate about and that you have qualities valued by colleges. Being involved in a sport may also offer the rare opportunity to do so at the collegiate level.

    Start thinking about your life after school.

    (W | C | S | M) Begin thinking strongly about the type(s) of job(s) that might interest you. There is a chance that this will change over the next four years, but it is a good idea to start thinking about possibilities. This can help you create a four-year high school plan by the end of the year.

    Save for college.

    (C) It’s not too late to put money aside for college. Every little bit helps! Learning about financial aid early on can also help you down the road. Know that the SHS Counseling Office puts on a Financial Aid Night every September. Though meant for juniors and seniors, attending can give you some knowledge about what to consider for saving up for a traditional college if you’re thinking about going that route.

    Start participation in extracurricular activities.

    (C | S) Academics aren’t everything. Consider getting involved in different sports, clubs, groups, or community service opportunities. Many colleges would care to see real involvement in one or a few activities instead of a loose connection to several so you can use your freshman year to figure out which ones matter to you most. Eventual involvement in leadership positions will be required to attend a service academy.

    (A) If you’re interested in playing sports in college, play all sports that you have a strong enough interest in playing at the collegiate level in order to keep your options open. You will need to maintain a 2.0 Cumulative GPA throughout high school to consider being eligible to play sports at the next level.

    Meet with your high school counselor.

    (W | C | S | M | A) Your school counselor will meet with you formally to overview life at SHS around this time. Your school counselor knows how to help you get the most out of high school. Be sure to take some time during the remainder of the school year to meet with your counselor to discuss your post-secondary plans if you need further assistance

    Get familiar with Naviance®.

    (W | C | S) Naviance/Family Connection is a software program accessible from the district website. Susquehannock requires students to use the Naviance/Family Connection program in the Career Seminar class, for tracking their Graduation Project, and during the college application process to manage communications between SHS and college admissions offices, including letters of recommendation. Students – and their parents – are highly encouraged to use many of the college and career exploration tools available on the site by logging in with their account and exploring different areas.

    Winter [December – February]

    Create a four-year high school plan.

    (W | C | S | M) It is important to think about what you would like to do in the next four years as they will go by quicker than you may think. Taking the proper courses while at SHS can help provide a strong foundation for the path you want to pursue whether it be attending college, enrolling in a service academy, enlisting in the military, or directly entering the work force.

    (W | C | S) If you do not know what classes you will need as a part of your career plan or are completely unaware of what you would like to do after high school, you can meet with your school counselor and ask what the “right” classes are during scheduling in February. This includes courses in the proper subject area or Advanced Placement courses if necessary.

    (A) Let your coaches, counselor, and Athletic Director know that you’re interested in trying to play at the collegiate level. They can help you plan out the necessary steps to make playing at the next level a possibility including helping you establish a profile and/or film footage.

    Explore summer opportunities.

    (W | C) Consider exploring and taking advantage of enrichment opportunities for the coming summer. If thinking about possibly entering the work force directly from high school look for a summer job, internship, or volunteer position in a related field. This will help you learn more about that field. If thinking about possibly attending a more selective school – such as an Ivy League or US News “Top 20” school – consider doing a summer internship, college enrichment program, or a research opportunity.

    (W | C |) These summer activities can be found on Naviance under the “Colleges” Tab under the “enrichment programs” link. Many summer internship, college enrichment program, and research opportunities have applications due by the end of February.

    (A) If thinking about doing a sport at the collegiate level, consider attending a camp to improve your skills.

    Select 10th grade courses related to your post-secondary plans.

    (W | C | S | A) When it comes time to request courses for next year’s schedule, it is important to consider how the ones that you select will prepare you for what you want to do after high school. Consider if the course will provide you with foundational knowledge on the type of career that you would like.

    (C | S) If you are considering attending a selective school – such as an Ivy League or US News “Top 20” school – or one of the services academies then you will need to take Honors, World Language, and Advanced Placement courses to better your chances of being accepted.

    (A) If you are a student athlete that is interested in Division I or Division II athletics at the collegiate level then you’ll want to make sure your course selections meet with NCAA Guidelines; Academic, Honors, World Language and AP Courses will fulfill these guidelines.

    Spring [March – May]

    Consider Taking SAT Subject Tests.

    (C | S) If thinking about possibly attending a more selective school – such as an Ivy League or US News “Top 20” school – consider taking the SAT Subject Test in certain subject areas as some schools require or recommend that you take them, especially if applying to take specific courses or programs. Additionally, doing this can send a strong message to colleges about your interest in specific majors or programs. It is typically recommended that you take these exams in May or June – if offered – when the material remains fresh in your mind.


    Participate in summer opportunities.

    (W | C) If you looked into and applied for a summer job, internship, or volunteer position during the winter you should have received the results of your application by now. If accepted, it is important to follow through if time and money permit so that you can establish strong relationships with potential references, contacts, or professors.