Summer Counselor Newsletter
Updates from LAHS School Counselors
We have missed you!
Dear Students and Parents/Guardians,
2020 has brought us many adventures and new ways of preparing for our next steps.
We know students are anticipating information about the upcoming year, with many concerns about the college application process and standardized testing. As this process evolves nationally, be assured that we will communicate with you as we navigate this uncertain time together! This newsletter provides you with current information as we enter the 2020-21 school year.
Mrs. O'Connor, Mrs. Fennell, and Dr. Zack
Common App Info
It's never too early to start planning, so we encourage ALL students to create an account in Common Application. However, this is most important for seniors as they begin filling out general information and working on essays. Please note that the Class of 2021 can officially begin applying after August 1st.
Common App has over 900 colleges and universities and has welcomed 40 new colleges/universities to provide even more opportunities for students.
There is a fantastic step-by-step guide for students, including tutorials and how to create your Common App account here.
We have attached the following information for Naviance account setup and then how to link your Common Application account (for Class of 2021) to Naviance account after August 1st.
We encourage ALL rising Juniors and Seniors to start using this college/career planning resource.
We have put together a brief overview video tutorial here
**Seniors- You MUST LINK your Common App account with your Naviance account to make sure all of your college application materials will be in one location.**
Between July 15th -August 1st the ability to link accounts will be disabled by CommonApp. This will be available AFTER August 1, 2020.
Please email your counselor if you have questions or concerns.
College Board/SAT Updates
Updates for CollegeBoard and SAT dates can be found here. We encourage you to check this page regularly for updated information.
Note the August deadline registration date of July 31st!
If you were registered for a date that was canceled in Spring 2020, please log into your College Board account to update your information and find available seats for testing dates for Fall 2020.
College Board and Khan Academy® will continue to provide free practice resources online including full-length practice tests and personalized learning tools. You can access them here.
Contact your counselor if you need help, have questions, or concerns.
The ACT is asking students and families to continue to monitor changes and updates to their testing information.
ACT has issued a new statement: Due to test center capacity issues for the July 18 ACT, test center changes are no longer available. Check to see if your test center has been canceled. For those who have not yet been able to take the ACT test, new fall dates have been added, for which registration will be open near the end of July.
This is great video on ACT FAQs and their comprehensive COVID-19 resources and practice test opportunities here.
What does "test optional" mean for me?
Simply defined, test-optional means students are not required to submit standardized test scores on their application. Many schools are changing their policies on testing. It is best to check each school's policy on testing when applying.
If a student is removing testing from consideration, it shifts the emphasis to other pieces of your college application and to look at the applicant holistically.
SVSCA College Night Canceled
Virtual College Visits/Presentations
COVID-19 brought many closings of college campuses to outside visitors, and brought new challenges for students hoping to take college visits in the summer and early fall. StriveScan, CampusTours, and YouVisit were featured in this New York Times article as a way to visit college campuses safely from your home.
Here are some highlights:
StriveScan enables families to watch previously recorded presentations in "on demand" style format of college and career opportunities (Note: scroll to bottom of provided page for links). CampusTours links you directly to college/university virtual campus tours, social media pages, and websites. You can search by school name, state, or country. With the experience of YouVisit, students can get a personalized tour as if you are walking the campus with a tour guide. Please note this has 600 schools, so not every campus is listed. This article provides great information for students interested in Gap Year opportunities.
It is always great to explore online, but now more than ever, colleges and universities are encouraging prospective students to reach out individually to their college admissions representatives for more information. Please check the college/university websites for Zoom calls and other virtual opportunities. This is a great way to show "demonstrated interest", which college and universities prefer and encourage.
Save the date: NACAC National College Fairs
Here's your chance to hear firsthand from "those-in-the-know" at hundreds of colleges and universities nearby, across the country, and around the world.
Register to attend a NACAC (National Association for College Admissions Counseling) Virtual College Fair by seeing the fall schedule below. Registration begins in mid-August. Please sign up here to receive an email reminder as soon as registration opens.
More than 600 colleges and universities will be online to talk with high school juniors and seniors on each of these dates this fall:
September 30 12-8pm
October 12 1-9pm
November 8 2-10pm
PHEAA Financial Aid Webinars
Pennsylvania Higher Education Assistance Agency (PHEAA) is offering virtual financial aid webinars to support you in the financial aid process. You can access Financial Aid webinars here.
Please search under "PA School Services" to register for upcoming webinars. You can also view past webinars. We have attached the recent update from PHEAA.
Summer is a good time to consider updating their Raise.me account or creating an account. Raise.me allows students to input information about their experiences and achievements in high school and they can see immediately the scholarship value for those experiences.
“RaiseMe is a social enterprise focused on expanding access to higher education, especially among low income and first generation students. Rather than waiting until the end of high school to earn scholarships, which is often too late to impact a student's college ambitions or choices, RaiseMe enables students to earn scholarships throughout high school, starting as early as 9th grade, for doing all the things that best prepare them to succeed, whether that’s getting good grades, volunteering in the community or joining an extracurricular.” (Raise.me)
Be a Good Digital Citizen!
Lewisburg HS School Counselors
Please don't hesitate to be in touch to set up a time to meet via Zoom, but use email as we have limited office hours this summer:
Dr. Brenda Zack email@example.com (K-12 Career Counselor).
Follow us on instagram too @LAHSGuidance