College & Career Center Newsletter

George Mason High School - September 3, 2020


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College Conversation with Ms. Mural, Thursday, September 10, 12 noon - 1 pm

Please join me in Schoology, Counseling Class of 2021, for an informal question and answer session about colleges and the application process.

College Essay Writing Workshop, Friday, September 11, 12 noon - 1 pm

Ms. April Gamble, Senior Assistant Director of Admissions & Coordinator of Counselor Relations at The College of Wooster, will lead a College Essay Writing Workshop for GMHS students. You need to sign up ahead of time using this registration form because the virtual platform for the live program has a capacity limit. I will send out the URL the week of the program to the students who sign up to participate. The workshop is intended to be interactive, so please bring your questions about how to craft a compelling college application essay to ask a current admission officer.

Virtual College Visits start on Monday, September 14

Admission officers from colleges and universities will be joining us virtually to share information about their schools and answer your questions. These visits are scheduled for 35 minutes. Although students are dismissed from school at noon on Mondays and Fridays, some college visits are scheduled after dismissal to minimize conflicts with instructional time. Students in all grades at GMHS can attend virtual college visits.

What do I need to do to participate in a virtual college visit?

  • View the virtual college visit schedule in Naviance under the What's New heading on the Naviance homepage
  • Download the visit software using the Self Service application portal on your school computer (instructions were posted in Schoology on Monday, August 31)
  • Sign up in Naviance at least one day before each visit - you can sign up now! Early registration confirms for admission officers that there is interest to learn more about their school which helps to decrease visit cancellations.
  • If a visit conflicts with a class, you need to obtain permission from your teacher to attend.
  • Think about questions you can ask admission officers
  • 15 minutes before each college visit is scheduled to begin, in Naviance under the visit appointment you will find the URL so you can connect to the session. Some colleges ask you to fill out a form ahead of time so they know who attends, so please try to connect a few minutes before each visit begins.


Senior Worksheet & Parent Brag Sheet

These forms are due to your school counselor one month before the first college application deadline. These forms can be found within Naviance; the Parent Brag Sheet is also posted on the College and Career Center website. The Senior Worksheet is completed in Naviance and the Parent Brag Sheet is emailed to your student's counselor. These forms are not sent to colleges and universities. They are used to help your counselor write the school recommendation to support you.


Coalition for College Virtual Fairs

"The event features 130+ colleges and universities all committed to access, affordability and student success." Registration opened today for the September fairs! Additional fairs are scheduled for October and November.

September Virtual College Fair, Session 1, Wednesday, September 16, 7-10 pm ET

September Virtual College Fair, Session 2, Thursday, September 17, 7-10 pm ET

CollegeVine, Student Panel College Fair, September 21-26, various times

"Unlike a traditional college fair where you'd meet with admissions officers from each college, our Student Panel College Fair allows you to hear directly from current students that attend the colleges you're interested in. You'll have the opportunity to ask questions and hear unfiltered perspectives from actual students." Choose from Q&As with current college students representing over 100 universities. You need to register for sessions in advance. If you can't make a session, register anyway and they will send you an email message with a link to the recording.

HBCU (Historically Black Colleges and Universities) College Fair, Saturday, September 19, 1 pm

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Latino College Expo, National College Resources Foundation, Friday, September 25, 4-7 pm ET

"The Virtual Latino College Expo is an ONLINE Experience for students to get access to colleges, highlighting Hispanic Serving Institutions (HSIs), and other educational programs. It also is a celebration of “Hispanic Heritage Month”."

NACAC Virtual College Fair, Sunday, September 13, 12 noon - 8 pm ET

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Coalition for College, Coalition Group College Access Information Programs

"Please join Coalition schools Colby College, Northeastern University, the University of Michigan, Vanderbilt University, and Washington University in St. Louis for a virtual presentation to learn more about navigating the college search, application, and financial aid processes this fall." You need to sign up in advance.

Wednesday, September 9, 4 - 5:30 pm EDT

Thursday, September 10, 4 - 5:30 pm EDT

Tuesday, September 22, 5-6:30 pm EDT

Wednesday, September 23, 5-6:30 pm EDT

Common App: Application Guide for first-time students

"Get tips and best practices to give yourself the best chance at success."

Discovering U

"Join Columbia University, the University of Chicago, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Michigan, and Yale University to discover the exceptional opportunities our schools have to offer! Admissions professionals from our five schools will host a zoom webinar featuring a variety of perspectives on the academic programs, philosophies, and traditions that make our colleges a home for our students."

Joint Virtual Spanish Information Session, Thursday, September 10, 7 pm CDT

Joint Virtual Information Session, Thursday, September 17, 7 pm CDT

Discovering U: Access and Financial Aid, Thursday, September 24, 7 pm CDT

"Join Columbia University, the University of Chicago, the University of Texas at Austin, the University of Michigan, and Yale University for a conversation about access and financial aid."

Exploring College Options

"Exploring College Options is a special informational program sponsored by the undergraduate admissions offices of five of the country's leading universities: Duke University, Georgetown University, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania, and Stanford University.

This fall we are pleased to invite you and your family to join us for a 90-minute webinar to help you explore your college options and prepare a strong and reflective application in this time of change and new challenges. During the program, admission officers from our five universities will introduce their institutions, discuss the college application process, answer general questions, and provide individual school breakout sessions. You need to register ahead of time to attend." Additional programs are scheduled for October.

Thursday, September 10, 7 pm EDT

Sunday, September 13, 5 pm EDT

Wednesday, September 16, 3 pm EDT

First Things First: Parent Panel, Wednesday, September 23, 7-8 pm CDT

"Join us for a conversation with the parents of UChicago first-generation college students to learn about the impact a college education can have on families."


  • Free College Essay Bootcamps - Their Writing Coaches will help your student develop a compelling essay draft in under 3 hours. Visit to view the schedule and reserve a spot.
  • Complimentary College Essay Office Hours - Heather Vaughn is Prompt’s Essay Manager. She is hosting complimentary College Essay Office Hours for two weeks only for parents and guardians. Click here to schedule a time with Heather.

QuestBridge Quest for College Sessions, Saturday, September 12 at 4-5:15 pm ET

"You are invited to attend a virtual college information session and connect with representatives from Colorado College, University of Chicago, University of Southern California, Vanderbilt University, and Yale University. They will provide guidance on making a college list, applying for admission and financial aid, and keeping your search in perspective. They'll also discuss benefits of the QuestBridge application, which allows high-achieving, low-income students to match with highly selective colleges around the country." You need to register in advance.

QuestBridge QuestCasts for the National College Match

Many past programs are available to view on the QuestBridge YouTube channel.

Behind the Scenes with Admissions Officers, Wednesday, September 16, 7 pm ET

The Sister Colleges Events, Sister Colleges Virtual Parent/Student Information Sessions

"Learn how our outstanding campus opportunities — internships, research, leadership development, career preparation and social life — translate into powerful outcomes for our alumnae." You need to register ahead of time to learn about Barnard College, Bryn Mawr College, Mount Holyoke College, Smith College, and Wellesley College.

Wednesday, September 9, 8-9:30 pm

Saturday, September 12, 2-3:30 pm


CNN (2020, September 01). University of California System can't use SAT and ACT tests for admissions, judge rules.

The Chronicle of Higher Education (2020, August 31). Here's Our List of Colleges' Reopening Models.


What should I be doing now to apply to college?

The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) is a large professional organization that has prepared many resources for students. Their Senior Checklist can help you manage your college application process.

FERPA (Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act)

Seniors, and a parent/guardian if the student is under 18 years old, need to complete the FERPA Consent, Release & Waiver for Letters of Recommendation(s): College, Scholarship, Honor, Special Programs & Employment. If you are applying to colleges using the Common Application, the GMHS FERPA form is in addition to completing the FERPA section within the Common Application.

Common Application Tutorial Videos

There are several First-Year Applicant Tutorial videos on the Common Application YouTube channel that may be helpful to you. If you have not matched your Common Application to Naviance yet, this video will walk you through the steps.


The national test dates for the ACT in October are: October 10, 17, 24, and 25 (Sunday). September 17 is the deadline to register for any of these October test dates.

Registration to sit for the SAT/SAT Subject Tests on the national test dates is open. September 4 is the registration deadline to sit for the test on Saturday, October 3, 2020.

SAT at GMHS on Wednesday, October 14

The SAT will be offered to SENIORS only on Wednesday, October 14. If you are a Senior and would like to take the SAT in school on Wednesday, October 14, please fill out this form. The deadline to sign up is Friday, September 11. The cost is $52.00 and will be collected on the day of the test. Checks should be made out to GMHS. Students do not need to register with College Board for this school-day test.


The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) will open on October 1. Some schools also require the CSS Profile for financial aid consideration. Please consult individual colleges regarding financial aid forms that are required.


You will find scholarship resources on the College and Career Center Financial Aid and Scholarship website page and within Naviance.

Award for Aspirations in Computing (Award for AiC), National Center for Women & Informational Technology (NCWIT)

The application opened on September 1 and is due on November 5, 2020.

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You will find a list of gap year programs on the College and Career Center Gap Year website page.

This information is provided for your convenience. Postings do not indicate endorsement or sponsorship by George Mason High School, FCCPS, nor any administrator or employee of either George Mason High School or FCCPS.