College Planning Checklist for Juniors

The Plan

  • Make sure you are taking college preparatory courses. Don't drop these courses if they seem too hard. Colleges look for students who challenge themselves. Talk to your teacher and school counselor if you are having a hard time. Keep grades up, but strive for balance in life.
  • Take the PSAT in your junior year. This may qualify you for scholarships and is great practice for the SAT.
  • Review PSAT results before you take your college entrance exams.
  • Take appropriate college entrance exams. (SAT, Subject Tests, ACT and/or TOEFL)
  • Begin researching colleges; plan on a broad list of approximately 20-25. Eventually you will narrow this list down. Discuss parameters (cost, distance) with your parents and create a list of important factors. For your research, use various tools such as Family Connections, college websites, Career Center, college fairs, and college visits. Spring break is a great time to visit college campuses.
  • Meet with counselor to discuss 4-year college or other post secondary plans
  • Attend College Stinger Sessions and College Fairs as well as other college programs. Meet with the college representatives that visit Herndon.
  • Develop further in-dept extracurricular and leadership activities for resume.
  • Update your college file at the end of each marking period. Include information that you have picked up at college fairs, campus visits or receive in the mail.
  • Start learning the specifics about different types of financial aid such as grants/scholarships, loans, and college work-study. If you apply for financial aid, these are all parts of the financial aid package that you might receive when ya re accepted to college.
  • Begin researching scholarships in the spring of your Junior year. Look for scholarship information on Family Connection and in the Career Center. Access the various online scholarship searches. In addition, ask family members to find out if their are scholarships offered by their employers or by organizations to which they belong; if you have a job, ask your employer about scholarship opportunities available to you through your company; talk to high school seniors about scholarships they have received.
  • Continue saving for college. Colleges will expect you to ave a portion of your summer earnings to help pay for your education.