Keep your grades up and take challenging classes in core academic subjects. Your freshmen year will be the easiest year of your high school years, use it as an advantage to raise your GPA as this year will pave the way for the Top 10% race. Most colleges require four years of English, at least three years of social studies, three years of mathematics, and four years of science, and many require two years of a foreign language. Round out your course load with classes in computer science and the arts.
Get involved in school- or community-based activities that interest you or let you explore career interests. Consider working, volunteering, and/or participating in academic enrichment programs, summer workshops, and camps with specialty focuses such as music, arts, or science. Remember—it’s quality (not quantity) that counts. Start a list of your awards, honors, paid and volunteer work, and extracurricular activities. Update it throughout high school.
Meet with your guidance counselor often. Ask your guidance counselor or teachers what Advanced Placement courses are available, whether you are eligible, and how to enroll in them. Your counselor is your best guidance- know their name and visit them often.
Keep your dream universities admission requirements in mind: Find out what the required rank, GPA and SAT/ACT scores are for your dream university and keep this in mind as you complete every school year.
Think about your future: What career do you wanna pursue once you go to college? Figure out if you like science and math more than reading and writing as this will help you know if you wanna pursue a career in STEM or the liberal arts. This will help you save time and money once you get to your undergraduate years in college.
Get organized!: Manage your time wisely. Keep a planner with important school deadlines, test dates and college visits. Start looking at internships and start applying! While most scholarships require you to be a Junior or Senior, there are some scholarships that are available to freshmen and sophomores too. Take a look at our scholarships page.
Talk to your child about college plans as if he or she will definitely go to college.
Keep an eye on your child’s study habits and grades—stay involved.
Encourage your child to take challenging classes and be involved in school.
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