College Counseling Junior Night
March 30, 2023
Watch the recording of this presentation from experienced admissions officers from Boston College, Brown University and the University of Massachusetts Amherst.
- Continue to focus on strengthening your academic record and preparation for college. Be mindful of your academic and personal goals when choosing your courses.
- Maintain meaningful connections with faculty members, advisors and coaches and seek their advice as you begin to research and identify colleges.
- Take the PSAT/NMSQT (National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) in October. This year your scores will be used to identify students for the National Merit Scholarship. PSAT scores are NOT sent to colleges.
- College Counselors available for individual conferences with parents of juniors during Parents Weekend in October and throughout the year upon request.
- Consider taking a SUMMIT SAT or ACT test prep course in preparation for the March or May administration of the SAT or the April administration of the ACT.
- College Counselor assignments are made in December of the junior year. Students should make every effort to schedule at least three individual meetings prior to spring break.
- Required Junior Class field trip to two college campuses. Schools visited in the last two years include Trinity College, University of Connecticut, College of the Holy Cross and Clark University.
- Discuss a standardized testing schedule and plan with your College Counselor and register well in advance of the deadlines to avoid unnecessary late fees. International students should prepare to take the TOEFL exam at least once before the end of the academic year. Talk with your classroom teachers about taking an SAT II Subject Test in any areas of strength. (Note: Most colleges no longer require subject tests, but a few of the most competitive colleges still do.)
- Attend required evening program featuring admission officers addressing current topics on college admission. Parents are encouraged to attend.
- Attend required Junior Seminar classes during the winter trimester. These classes meet once a week in a small group setting with a College Counselor and provide an in-depth exploration of the college admission process. Students will learn how to research and identify colleges that are a good “match”, how to navigate Naviance and a college website, how to complete the Common Application, brainstorm essay topics and work on the development of an effective personal statement. Students will create a Common Application account as part of the class.
- Take the March or May SAT and/or the April or June ACT. Take Subject tests as appropriate.
- If appropriate, take the Advanced Placement exams administered in May.
- If you are a student athlete who is interested in playing a Division I or II sport on the college level, register with the NCAA Clearinghouse at www.eligibilitycenter.org.
- Students and parents should have an open, honest discussion about financing a college education. Take time to research financial aid policies and scholarship resources.
- Identify two teachers you will ask to write letters of recommendation on your behalf. Ask at least one teacher from your junior year IN PERSON using the College Counseling Office’s request forms no later than May.
- Schedule campus visits to as many colleges that interest you as possible. Take advantage of the opportunity to interview if it is available.
- Students who have attended any other high school before enrolling at WMA should request a copy of their official transcript from their previous school and submit it to their College Counselor.
- Make good use of your summer vacation! READ, review application requirements, work on college essays and complete the Common Application.
In the junior year, students begin to work one-on-one with their individual counselor as part of our very personalized approach to the college process. Regular meetings for the remainder of the year, along with weekly Junior Seminar classes during the winter trimester, help students to identify a range of colleges that are a good match for their unique interests, talents and goals. In conjunction with the English Department, we work closely with our students on their writing skills with a focus on completing a polished college essay by the end of the junior year.
Each February, the College Counseling Office presents a special program for juniors and their parents featuring a panel of seasoned admission officers. This year, we welcomed back Erin Bernard, Senior Associate Director of Admission at the University of Massachusetts, Erik DeAngelis, Associate Director of Admission at Brown University, and Chris O'Brien, Associate Director of Admission at Boston College.
These classes meet during the winter trimester. Students meet in a small group setting with a College Counselor and are provided an in-depth exploration of the college admission process. Students will learn how to research and identify colleges that are a good “match,” how to navigate Naviance and a college website, how to complete the Common Application, brainstorm essay topics and work on the development of an effective personal statement. Students will create a Common Application account as part of the class.
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We’re providing the SMARTTRACK® College Funding High School Initiative to assist our 9th-11th grade families with the financial piece of college planning. If you’re concerned that you won’t qualify for financial aid, haven’t saved enough, or don’t have an effective plan to cover the considerable costs of educating all your children, SMARTTRACK® can help.
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