If your child is wanting to attend a state flagship college or even the Ivy Leagues, it’s time to prepare! Middle School is ideal to begin your student into making themselves not only in a position to compete with others, but to stand out! Now is the time to begin speaking with the guidance counselors about where your child would like to attend. It does sound early, and how can a child possibly make a decision such as this now and they are only in middle school?
I can assure you that most children are NOT going to know where they want to attend college, but some do. And the college they want to attend, about the entire state wants to attend to. Your child isn’t doomed if they have not made a choice as to where they will attend college by the middle school years, but they will have an advantage. Especially if they are first generation college students.
Knowing the types of activities they should participate in, putting themselves in leadership positions, taking all the right courses and so on is a pretty good advantage than a high school sophomore that decides they want to attend the University of Miami. It still may be a possibility, but they won’t have to sweat as nearly many bullets as the person that brainstormed in middle school and executed their college path Freshman year.
My own experience, I wanted so badly to attend Southern Methodist University in Dallas. I’d known since elementary school that is where I wanted to go. My family was middle class in an urban city, so I fell through the cracks when it came to college planning. My school put their focus on the super smart, and the most impoverished students. Since I fell in the middle, I really did not get the help until my sophomore year of high school. At this point, a lot of my classmates were already settled in a routine that will assure them spots in their top 3 schools. By my senior year, I remember getting that thin flat envelope from Southern Methodist stating I did not get accepted.
For those in high school, have you printed out the requirements for the top college choices? What are the entrance exam requirements? Has your student signed up for testing yet? Does your family quality for the fee waivers for college entrance exams? Those fee waivers come in handy since they allow your student to test twice and apply to four colleges at no charge. A lot of schools, give students study materials so they can prepare for testing. Are your kids studying for testing on the weekends and their free time? How about their current school work? How are their grades? What extra curricular activities are they participating in? Can they try to get a leadership position? While you’re at it, make sure your student is involved in the community. Most universities require students to be active in community service.
There is a lot to do when it comes to your student not only preparing to apply to the colleges of their choice, but to also make themselves stand out from the rest to increase their chances of getting accepted.