Connections Weekly Newsletter

August 26, 2022

Upcoming Events

Sept. 6 - Junior, Financial Aid, and Senior Connections Family Night, 5:30-7:30 (new date) This will include an overview of what is to be expected for post-secondary planning for juniors and seniors, and a guest speaker to cover financial aid for college.

  • 5:30-6:10 Juniors

  • 6:15-6:40 Financial Aid (open to all grade levels)

  • 6:45-7:30 Seniors

Sept. 7 - Freshmen and Sophomore Connections Family Night, 5:30-6:30 Join our Connections team as we introduce (and continue) a PWR (Postsecondary and Workforce Readiness) Path for every student.

Back to School Night Presentation

Our team enjoyed connecting with parents at Back to School Night. If you were unable to attend our Family session before visiting classrooms and would like a snapshot of “Career, College, and More in Room 1104,” here is a link to that presentation. Thank you, families, for supporting your children!

CLASS OF 2023 - Advisor Skip Zickmund

Mr. Zickmund will be in Civic classes August 29th and 30th. During this meeting, we will discuss the steps to send application material (transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc.) to colleges through Naviance.

The start of the year is focused on the application process. This is the case because a lot of deadlines are early in the school year, October-December. There will be time to continue talks about careers, internships, gap year, and military options. Any student with specific questions or who wants help planning for after TCA is welcomed and encouraged to stop by my office for an individual appointment to see how I can help.

Here is a link to the Senior Year Checklist to help stay aware of some of the monthly “milestones.”

CLASS OF 2024 - Advisor Skip Zickmund

Starting 11th grade is sometimes a stressful time for students. Whereas 9th and 10th grade were times of transition and hitting your stride, 11th grade is often when high school really kicks into high gear. There’s not much time left for experimenting with different activities or finding the right course load. Instead, you’re expected to hit the ground running.

In addition, your junior year may be the beginning of the college search process. You’ll need to start curating a college list, preparing for standardized tests, and deciding how to present yourself as a college applicant. It can all seem a little overwhelming at first glance. Luckily, if you break it down into smaller pieces and get a better idea of what to expect, you’ll have no trouble. Wondering where to get started? Here, we are eight things you’ll need to do as you start 11th grade.

CLASS OF 2025 - Advisor Joanna Peters

I’m looking forward to working alongside sophomores again this year. We will build upon the lessons from last year as sophomores continue exploring careers. This is the year to really engage in opportunities provided by our center to explore opportunities.

Next time we are in class, students will complete the Career Key review the results, along with the results from the YouScience survey. Sophomores will also save careers they discover to their Naviance accounts. As a reminder, students also have many other chances to explore possibilities. You can sign up for all of these in Naviance on the Home Page, under What’s New. Click here for more information.

Please join us on Sept. 7 for Connections’ Freshmen/Sophomore Family Night, 5:30-6:30, Brown Center for the Arts (through café)

CLASS OF 2026 - Joanna Peters

Post-Chat Learning and Productivity

It was great to meet so many of you at Back-to-School Night! I’ll be in class next week with all freshmen to chat about their Learning and Productivity Preferences.

Please join us on Sept. 7 for Connections’ Freshmen/Sophomore Family Night, 5:30-6:30, Brown Center for the Arts (through café).


* Monday, 8/29 10:30, University College of Cork, Room 1104

* Tuesday, 8/30 10:55, U.S. Navy NROTC, Outside Main Office

* Thursday, 9/1 10:55, Western Colorado, Room 1104

AP & PSAT/NMSQT Payment Deadline is September 9, 2022

AP & PSAT/NMSQT payments must be completed in Infinite Campus by Sept. 9, 2022. Any payment questions are to be directed to the Finance office. Fee waivers for testing are available (see below); the deadline to return the waiver is also Sept. 9, 2022.


  • AP exam: $97 per AP course - AP exam is required for ALL AP courses
  • Optional PSAT/NMSQT exam: $18 per exam

Why would I pay the optional fee and take the PSAT/NMSQT exam?

Fee Waivers

If you qualify for Free/Reduced Lunch, you qualify for testing fee waivers and college application fee waivers, even if you have not filed at the district for free/reduced lunch. If you are unsure, please look at the guidelines and let us know if you qualify. We would love to walk you through the ways (in Connections) we can help. The deadline to register for the October PSAT/NMSQT exam is September 9, 2022. If you qualify for a PSAT/NMSQT exam fee waiver, please submit this form to Connections or by Sept. 9. If you need a full or partial waiver for AP exams, please submit this form.

Enrichment Opportunities

High School Students Can Apply for Free, Fall AI Bootcamp With no prior experience or knowledge required, any 9th-12th grader can learn the basics of Artificial Intelligence by participating in a four-week Intro to AI Bootcamp sponsored by Western Union and the Mark Cuban Foundation. Transportation assistance, meals, and technology tools are provided. Classes take place on October 22, October 29, November 5, and November 12 from 11 AM-4 PM. The deadline to apply is Thursday, September 1. (We confirmed that TCA high school students can apply, however, transportation assistance may not be provided.) apply now.

Help Us Help You

Our team supports every family. We strive to always be aware of opportunities as we advise our families. We want to partner with you and your teen. We have created a form to complete, this is optional and WILL STAY CONFIDENTIAL in Connections. We have also included a Back to School checklist for you below and will be intentional about sharing other resources as we discover them. We will send messages through email, Infinite Campus, Naviance, or connect in person during student or family meetings. All are welcome to schedule an appointment with your advisor ANYTIME.

Back to School Checklist

This checklist has been created for your convenience. This checklist is also on our Connections Webpage.

Back-to-School Checklist

Connections Center (Career & College)

Joanna Peters, Director - 9th & 10th Grades, PSAT/NMSQT, Scholarships

Skip Zickmund, Assistant Director - 11th & 12th Grades, AP

Jodi Hoffman, Office Manager - Rep Visits, Community Service