Connections Weekly Newsletter

September 9, 2022

Upcoming Events

TODAY, Sept. 9 - AP & PSAT/NMSQT Payment Deadline


Sept. 20 - Senior College Information Night, 5:30-6:30. Lecture Hall Rm 1102 Learn about the college application process. In addition to covering the details of the college application process and how to use Naviance, we will cover student responsibilities, what TCA sends as part of the college application process, deadlines, and other application components. There will also be plenty of time to get your questions answered, so come prepared to ask! Students are welcome to attend.

CLASS OF 2023 - Advisor Skip Zickmund

I visited the seniors in their Civics class last week to start to talk about Naviance and the college application process. During the visit, we reviewed the correct way to have transcripts sent to colleges. The key takeaway was, “Apply first, request transcripts second.” It must be in this order, if not, requests to have transcripts sent will be deleted.


There are several important deadlines for college applications from now until December so my visits will be focused on this task. After December, class visits will focus on resume writing, a bit more career/internship information, and general “readiness” for post-secondary “life.”


One point that was emphasized was that everyone is at a different point in this process. What one student is doing is great for them, but it might not, nor does it have to be, the same for all students. Students were reminded to stop by my office to let me know where they might have questions, I can’t help if I don’t know.


Finally, in the “You Should Know” category, October 18-20 is Colorado Free Application Day. All application fees will be waived for Colorado State schools and most private schools. Click here for more information.


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

I visited with juniors in their English classes this week. We talked about the schedule of the year; first semester will focus on career/interest, the second semester will be developing a post-graduation plan.


After reviewing Naviance, paying attention to the “What’s New” section for all the upcoming college visits, we discussed the importance of getting involved in clubs, sports, and activities and talked a bit about PSAT/NMSQT and community service hours. We completed a career interest inventory and used a series of questions as a reflection to understand their results.


If you were unable to attend the Junior Family Night, here is the power point for you to look over. Please reach out if you have any questions.

CLASS OF 2025 - Advisor Joanna Peters

Thank you for attending the Connections Family Night. I hope that by sharing the resources your teen will be engaging with, you will be able to support their exploration. As I mentioned several times, although it SEEMS early for 10th graders to have this discussion, our process is just exposure and awareness of opportunities. Please encourage your teen to sign up and attend Career Chats, College Visits, College Fairs, Gap year visits, military visits, and more. As we say “Career, College & More in Room 1104.” Also, as I mentioned last night, here are some questions that are SO MUCH BETTER than the stress-inducing “What do you want to do for the rest of your life?”


Although I do not have a recording or PowerPoint for this presentation, here is a copy of the notes page distributed. One of the questions asked last night was about the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). The deadline to pay the registration fee for the PRACTICE on Oct. 12 (Fall Break) is TODAY; listed as an optional $18 fee within Infinite Campus Fee Payments. Be sure and check out the available Merit Scholarships.


Discussion idea: Sophomores had time in class last week to finish the Career Cluster Finder, Career Interest Profiler, Skills Explorer, and Career Key. Please take a few minutes and review the results using your Parent/Guardian access. If you cannot find your Naviance log-in code, please email Jodi Hoffman tcavisits@asd20.org for access. The next few times in class your teen will be researching the common themes of the results; the WHY those career ideas may have shown up and what is it that someone in that career field does. Please encourage your teen to complete their YouScience games. Here are some great conversation starters for those results.

CLASS OF 2026 - Advisor Joanna Peters

Thank you for attending the Connections Family Night. I hope that by sharing the resources your teen will be engaging with, you will be able to support their exploration. As I mentioned several times, although it SEEMS early for 9th graders to have this discussion, our process is just exposure and awareness of opportunities. As I mentioned last night, here are some questions that are SO MUCH BETTER than the stress-inducing “What do you want to do for the rest of your life?” Although I do not have a recording or PowerPoint for this presentation, here is a copy of the notes page distributed.


One of the questions last night was about the PSAT 9 scores being distributed by admin next Monday. Although Connections does not handle this testing or distribution, we would recommend that becoming familiar with the test (and timing) is the best use of time. Free test practice is available via Khan Academy; you can connect your College Board account (DO not create a new account but use your access code and College Board ID from the printed test results) to Khan Academy and practice the concepts/questions missed.


Discussion idea: All freshmen have completed the Learning and Productivity Inventory. Using your parent/guardian log-in, review the recommendations for how to study in the classroom or at home and how to prepare for tests and presentations. If you cannot find your Naviance log-in code, please email Jodi Hoffman tcavisits@asd20.org for access. The next time I meet with freshmen, they will complete the Career Cluster Finder and start setting goals.

Understanding Test Scores

Although the state tests are handled by the administration team, here are a few resources that might help you with the interpretation of the PSAT 9/PSAT 10 (paper results being distributed Monday)

Understanding Test Scores

AP & PSAT/NMSQT Payment Deadline is TODAY

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.


Fees

  • 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 tcacollege@asd20.org by Sept. 9. If you need a full or partial waiver for AP exams, please submit this form.

CAREER & COLLEGE VISITS

Connections, Room 1104

Look and sign up for these events in Naviance at least one day before to receive a pass, otherwise, stop by Connections to get a pass. Most out-of-state visits and mini-college fairs happen in the fall.

* Monday, 9/12 2:10, Salve Regina University
* Tuesday, 9/13 10:30, BINGO
* Wednesday, 9/14 8:40, St. Olaf College


In the Community

Christian College Fair of Colorado will be hosting a college fair on Monday, September 19 from 6-8pm at Colorado Springs Christian High School.


NACAC will be hosting a college fair on Sunday, September 25 from 1-4pm at the Denver Coliseum.


The Colorado Council on High School/College Relations will be hosting a college fair for District 20 on Wednesday, October 5 from 6-7pm at 1110 Chapel Hills Drive.


UCCS will be hosting an Open House for students interested in helping professions on October 19 from 10am-3pm.


Virtual

NACAC will be hosting Virtual College Fairs on Sunday, September 11, October 9, and November 6 from 11am-4pm.

Enrichment Opportunities

Sign up for a Virtual Session with Harvard, Princeton, UVA, Wellesley, and Yale in September or October.


Interested in cybersecurity? Space? Aerospace? October 19, the second day of the Value of Space Summit, is for everyone. Space ISAC members, partners, industry colleagues, students, and space and cyber enthusiasts alike are invited to participate in a busy day of high-level panels, presentations, speeches, and engaging activities followed by tours of the brand-new Space ISAC Headquarters and Watch Center at the National Cybersecurity Center (NCC) in the evening. Interested in Volunteering? More information here.


The Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP) is a U.S. government program run by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) program to help low-income households pay for internet service and connected devices like a laptop or a tablet. For more information click here.


Virtual Session with Emory University, Rice University, the University of Michigan, and the University of Washington.


ACT is hosting My Journey, a free virtual college planning event on Saturday, September 24 from 9-11:30 am. This will feature ACT experts covering all the latest details on scholarships, admissions policies, financial aid, college life, test prep, and everything else students and families need to know. Register here.


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. Virtual Sessions in September and October.


Colorado Parks and Wildlife will be hosting a Q&A on the hiring process for the park ranger and district wildlife manager trainees for CPW on September 14 at 6:30pm.


Gather teammates and consider competing in the EHL Business Case Competition, sponsored by the EHL Hospitality Business School. This is a great opportunity for students interested in a global career, business, hospitality, or are “people-people.” Students will learn from industry experts, interact with students from across the world and have a chance to win great prizes!


University of Michigan admission representatives will be available during the NACAC Virtual College Fairs on Sunday, September 11, October 9, and November 6 from 11a-4p.


The Coast Guard Academy will be hosting an Admissions event on Friday, September 23 in Denver for students who are interested in pursuing a service career at a military service Academy.


Engaging Distinctive Universities, a collaboration with Emory University, Rice University, the University of Michigan, and the University of Washington will be hosting virtual events on September 13 and 28.

Scholarships and Incentive Programs

Pepsi Stronger Together Scholarship Contest is available to high school seniors who are interested in pursuing a career in the arts. Award Amount: $25,000. Deadline: Sept. 20.

College Highlights

If you are interested in Journalism or Media Communications, check out this affordable small college list from Peter Pitts, owner of u2k4college.com


University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland offer several flexible four-year degrees within their Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences and the Strathclyde Business School. The flexible program structure gives you the opportunity to choose the ideal combination of subjects for your chosen career path. Register here to speak to Strathclyde admission representatives.


New majors


St John’s College is known for the Great Books curriculum, where students explore classic books—from literature and philosophy to math and science—in small discussion-based classes. Early Decision by November 1 or Early Action by November 15. There is no application fee, and St. John’s is test optional. By applying early, students are eligible for their merit scholarships ranging from $2,000 to full tuition for all four years!



Princeton Review is hosting “Study Skills Week,” September 11-15, a series of events dedicated to academic success. Their experts will discuss skills that produce better grades, test strategies for the PSAT and AP Exams, and a look at the upcoming Digital SAT.

Sun. 9/11 @ 6pm - The Digital SAT: What You Need to Know

Mon. 9/12 @ 6pm - PSAT Strategy Session

Tues. 9/13 @ 6pm - Study Skills 101

Weds. 9/14 @ 6pm - Crafting Your Academic Essay

Thurs. 9/15 @ 8pm - Advanced Placement 101

Career Spotlights - Robotics and Artificial Intelligence

If you have a technical mind and get excited by technology, you might be interested in a career in Robotics and Artificial Intelligence. Students exploring computer science, software engineering, or cybersecurity programs would be good candidates for this robotics and AI degree program.

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.

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