12th Grade Updates SEPTEMBER

CHS Counseling Office

Welcome to Senior Year!

You've made it! You are a senior! Likely you have many questions, worries, concerns, and hopes right now and the counselors at CHS are excited to help you navigate this school year. This newsletter will focus heavily on college prep, however, future newsletters will give more information about post-secondary options that do not involve college plans.

College Sports

If you plays sports, please familiarize yourself with the NCAA and NAIA athletic recruiting requirements.

Letters of Recommendation

This is a good time to check in with your recommenders to make sure they know your deadlines. And if you haven't already, read this guide and then ask your teacher(s) if they’ll write a letter on your behalf.

You will request letters of recommendation through Naviance. Go to https://student.naviance.com/chestertonshs and choose "Sign in With Clever".

College Applications

Start familiarizing yourself with the information you need to gather. Over 900 colleges and universities use The Common Application. Colleges and universities that are not on the The Common Application will have applications on their school's website.


FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. The application opens up October 1. This is a very important part of the college process, it will help colleges put together their financial aid packages. Families should work on the FAFSA together. The CHS Counseling Office will sponsor a Financial Aid Night in October, be on the lookout for more information soon!

College Essay

Wondering how to get started on your college essays? This step-by-step guide and this video will walk you through the process. If you are Undocumented or a member of the LGBTQ+ Community and you’re wondering how much to disclose in your personal statement, these guides might help you map out your content.

College Fairs

Purdue Northwest is hosting 2 college fairs this fall. They will host one on Thursday, September 16th at their Hammond Campus and another on Tuesday, October 5 at their Westville campus. More than 60 colleges and universities will be represented at these college fairs! Click here to learn more about these College Fairs.

College Rep Visits

The Counseling Office at CHS regularly hosts college admissions reps as well as recruiters from each branch of the military. Students can sign up to attend college rep visits by logging into Naviance. In Naviance choose Colleges-then in the drop down list and choose College Visits. You can see which schools are coming to CHS and register to attend. Don't forget to come to the counseling office to pick up a pass to attend the meetings.


The CHS Counseling Office updates a list of scholarships regularly. Check this website often and apply for as many scholarships as you can! Please be wary of any organizations that ask for money to give you lists of scholarships, these are scams!

Social Media Tips

Young people really enjoy social media, however it is important to remember that anything that is posted online can never truly be deleted. It isn't common, but colleges and universities have been known to rescind admissions offers if students have posted questionable or offensive material on their social media accounts. One good rule of thumb is that if you wouldn't want your grandmother to see it, don't post it!

Suicide Prevention Awareness Month

September is Suicide Prevention Awareness Month. This can be a difficult topic to discuss, but it is an important one. Suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth in the state of Indiana. Approximately one in five high school students have thoughts about suicide and nationwide one out of every eleven high school students have made a suicide attempt in the past twelve months.

To learn more, please visit the following websites.

National Suicide Prevention Hotline

Indiana Center for Prevention of Youth Abuse and Suicide

School Counseling Office Staff

Mrs. Jenni Smoker-Office Manager jesmoker@duneland.k12.in.us

Mrs. Jill Balcerak-Registrar jbalcerak@duneland.k12.in.us

School Counselors

Get Involved!

Get involved in a couple of clubs, sports or other extracurricular activities either at your school or in your local community. Keep track of your engagement over time on this simple spreadsheet.

Check out the many clubs and sports offered at CHS! If you can't find a club that you are interested in, consider starting one!