• JUNIOR FOLLOW UP #2 (March 2020)

    I am very excited about the variety of interests and ideas you have shared in terms of your post high school plans:  exploring gap year adventures near and far, internship and job opportunities, and college visits across the nation and the globe.  Some have an “exact plan” that they intend to follow, and others have circuitous paths. Still others are in the “It’s scary, so I need to think more about this” stage.  Every one of these stages is perfectly ok and normal.  Don’t worry – I will help you through this process. 

    YOU are the MAJOR FOCUS of my time from now through December, so please stop in to see me whenever questions arise. Please plan to take advantage of the upcoming college prep workshops (Wednesday Tutorials and/or 7th period).  Logon to Naviance and go to Colleges, Research Colleges, College Visits and click the Registration button to sign up.  These are excellent opportunities for you to move through the college search and application process with maximum of support and minimum stress.  Workshop topics include college search, college essays, community college, financial aid and more.  Workshops begin this week!

    One Drake (Class of 2017, currently attending Lewis & Clark) student stands out in terms of the way she managed her college search.  Eleanor used her interests and her future ideals to guide her search.  She enjoys biology and journalism, with a particular interest in digital communications.  Hence, she looked for colleges that have opportunities to study all three areas and perhaps even design her own major.  She did not go with the flow of the crowd around her or worry about college rankings.  She designed a spread sheet which listed all of the colleges she was interested in, along with her personal and academic priorities and the costs of education, so that she had ample information to discuss with her parents when making a final determination about where to apply and which schools are financially reasonable for her family.  Her dream job: contributor to National Geographic (but she has plenty of publications in mind as back-ups).  Eleanor did an excellent and thoughtful job of reflecting on the areas that pique her curiosity and will provide her with opportunities in her fields of study and options on her career path.  Accepted at UofDenver, Evergreen, Goucher, Lewis & Clark, Portland State, UofRedlands, and The New School, Eleanor had plenty of great options for the next step on her academic and personal odyssey.

    Here is some advice to prepare you for the next steps on your journey:   

    ·         Many of you have completed the ACT and/or SAT already.  Some of you will be taking SAT Subject exams.  For more information in that regard, please review this SAT/ACT INFORMATION & ADVICE page.  Those of you beginning your college journey at the Community College do not need to take SAT/ACT unless you plan to participate in athletics.  The UC system requires SAT scores to include the writing portion of the exam.

    ·         For those of you who plan to apply to private colleges in the fall, those colleges WILL REQUIRE a letter of recommendation from me.  If you spend just 45-60 minutes completing the LETTER OF RECOMMENDATION FORM, you will have one less thing to do in the fall.  Do it now and you will thank me later.  If you would prefer a hard copy, there are some printed right outside of my office. Completing it will start you thinking about ideas for the college essays.  

    ·         You may want to peruse the COLLEGE APPLICATION GUIDE with your parents for great ideas and resources.  This guide has a wealth of information and will NOT be printed (go Green!  Save a tree).

    ·         Many of you plan to visit colleges over the break or summer, so please review the College Visit advice in the College Application Guide and/or the College Visit page on my site.  In addition, here are few helpful tips:

    o   Split up for campus tours so that you can learn the most (parents can take photos & notes while students visit a classroom or the cafeteria and talk directly with other students about the college)

    o   Pick up a copy of the College Newspaper (lots of insight to be gained about the school from this publication)

    o   Take your excel spreadsheet and rate things as you go

    o   Have a journal and working pen with you to take notes (if you visit more than two colleges a day, things tend to blur)

    o   Meet the admissions officer for the Bay Area and introduce yourself.  S/he will be reading your college application next fall

    For Parents - Hopefully, you will attend the April 28th (8:30-10 am) Junior Parent Q&A for any last minute questions before summer break. 

    Those are all my thoughts for now.  I will look forward to seeing you frequently throughout the next few months.   Enjoy!

    Last updated by Sheila Souder on 3/2/2020.  Emailed directly home to all Juniors and Junior Parents