Being proactive in your college preparation during your Junior year is a smart move. There are a few items you can start this year to prepare you for next year.
- Talk to your school counselor. Make sure you are on track to graduate next year. Your guidance counselor should also be able to provide information on how to register for standardized tests and may recommend a different course load.
- Sit down with your parents/guardians and gain an estimate of your financial aid using FAFSA4caster.ed.gov.
- You will want to register to take the PSAT/NMSQT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test) Test. You have to take this test in the 11th grade in order to qualify for scholarships and programs associated with the National Merit Scholarship Program. This test also prepares you for the SAT.
- Register to take the SAT and ACT. You may only need one or the other depending on the colleges you are interested in. If you know what colleges you want to attend already, see which test they require. If you don’t like your score this year, don’t worry, you can take the test again next year.
- Check out scholarships already. Did you can apply for some scholarships the summer before your senior year? Use the U.S. Department of Labor’s scholarship search to find scholarships.
- Learn about careers and their occupational outlook. Research what career you may be interested in — this will help you when selecting a major and a college. Use the U.S. Department of Labor’s Occupational Handbook for your research.
- Start looking at schools to apply too. The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation created a useful resource to quickly lookup facts about any college on the College Completion website.
- Continue doing your best in school!