Mrs. Nixon and students discussing college information

College Counseling

College Preparation Steps for Juniors

01/12/2021

JUNIOR YEAR

There is a great deal of information to consider, so the most important step in jumping in and getting started. Taking action makes the process much less overwhelming. 

AUGUST

  • Check Scoir.com to sign up for college meetings with reps who are visiting Bishop Chatard or offering virtual presentations specifically for our students.
  • Visit the School Counseling Canvas page. Check out the resources available.
  • Get your school year off on the right foot by using your planner, studying in advance of tests, and checking in with teachers to ensure that you fully understand the material. 
  • Keep your CollegeBoard login information in a safe place that is accessible to you and your family. Merging accounts can be time consuming, so it is helpful to be sure you don’t accidentally create an extra account when using the site for PSAT, SAT, and AP. 
  • Come up with an organizational system for your college information. You will see an increase in mail and emails from schools this year. Don’t pile them up in the corner; browse through them to see what you think. 
  • If you are interested in what you see, file the brochure or email in a “Learn More” folder  so that you can read through it, explore the website, and view the online campus tour. 
  • If you are not interested in what you see, recycle the brochure and delete the email. In addition, unsubscribe from the mailing list. The website and/or email you received should have a way to indicate you are not interested. This will save you time and save the college or university time and money; it’s a win-win for everyone.

SEPTEMBER  

  • Check Scoir.com to sign up for college meetings with reps who are visiting Bishop Chatard or offering virtual presentations specifically for our students.
  • Prepare to take the October PSAT. Work through questions on Khan Academy to help familiarize yourself with the types of questions that are asked. 
  • Brainstorm ways to get involved in school and in the community. Think about your interests, passions, and causes that are important to you. Take steps to get involved in some way. 
  • Visit Scoir.com to continue to search for colleges.   
  • Make sure you are meeting NCAA requirements if you want to play sports in college. (https://web3.ncaa.org/ecwr3/)  
  • Visit colleges as your schedule allows.  

OCTOBER  

  • Take the PSAT. Your junior year PSAT scores may qualify you for the National Merit Scholarship Competition. Take the PSAT seriously.  
  • View Mrs. Nixon’s College Counseling video series, available on the BCHS website and in the School Counseling canvas page. 
  • Take the YouScience assessment on scoir.com

NOVEMBER 

  • Focus on your grades. Colleges and universities place an emphasis on grade trends, so  junior grades are very important in the college admission process. You will be thankful for the extra time you spend to earn the highest grade possible if that effort equates to a larger automatic merit-based scholarship at some schools. 
  • Have open and honest conversations about how to finance college as a family.  
  • Check your winter and spring calendars and register for the ACT and SAT. Make a college testing schedule that allows time for you to study and learn from what you missed on previous tests. Pay close attention to testing deadlines!  
  • Memorize your Social Security number and/or take steps to obtain one if you do not already have one.

DECEMBER  

  • Review your PSAT score report. Identify your testing strengths and weaknesses.  
  • Study for your final exams. Check in with teachers regarding questions you missed on assessments throughout the semester and work to understand material that has given you trouble throughout the semester.
  • Take and/or prepare for the ACT/SAT.

 JANUARY  

  • Begin to make a preliminary list of colleges you want to learn more about. Use the Search and My Colleges resources on scoir.com.   
  • Set up your Just for Juniors meeting with Mrs. Nixon. These can be on Google meet or in person. Your family is welcome to join as well. 

FEBRUARY  

  • Meet with Mrs. Nixon to discuss your college list and your senior schedule.  
  • Register and prepare for ACT/SAT.  
  • Continue to utilize resources in scoir.com and the School Counseling Canvas page. 
  • Schedule college visits as your spring and summer schedule allows.

MARCH  

  • Attend local college fairs in person or virtually. Ask questions that will help you determine whether you see the college or university as a good potential fit for you.
  • Write, call, or request information online from colleges on your list.  
  • VISIT colleges! Finding the right fit is so important, and this step helps significantly.  
  • Continue to utilize resources in scoir.com and the School Counseling Canvas page. 
  • Brainstorm additional ways to get involved in school and in the community. Think about your interests, passions, and causes that are important to you. Take steps to get involved in some way. 

APRIL  

  • Check your senior schedule to ensure it is rigorous enough to challenge you. Colleges are increasing the amount of weight they give to your senior course schedule in the college admission process.  
  • Check to see if any of the schools in which you are interested require SAT Subject tests. Plan your summer and fall ACT/SAT testing schedule accordingly. 
  • Continue to evaluate your college list. Add or drop schools as they gain or lose your interest.  
  • Look into summer academic or enrichment programs. 

MAY  

  • Visit colleges and work on your college list.  
  • Take AP Exams. 
  • Check in with Mrs. Nixon to discuss your college process.

JUNE  

  • Take the SAT Subject Tests (if needed), SAT, or ACT JULY/AUGUST  
  • Visit colleges and continue to refine your list.  
  • Revisit the college application essay you created in English class. Work on additional supplemental application essays, collect writing samples, and assemble portfolios or audition tapes.  
  • Begin to look into outside scholarships by visiting www.fastweb.com. Complete scholarship applications as you find them. Be aware of deadlines!
  • Continue to utilize resources in scoir.com and the School Counseling Canvas page.