Counselor Connection

Morristown West High School

Counseling Department Newsletter --- August 2019

Senior Financial Aid Night

Tuesday, Sep. 3rd, 6-7pm

West High Auditorium

Morristown West seniors and their parents are invited to our annual Senior Financial Aid Night on Tuesday, September 3, at 6:00 PM in the auditorium. Colleges will be set up in the auditorium lobby at 5:30 PM. Erika Adams from the Tennessee Student Assistance Corporation (TSAC) will be our guest speaker and will offer information about Tennessee Promise and HOPE Scholarship programs, the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), and other federal and state financial aid. Don't miss out on this important information!

Five Rivers College Fair September 23

Juniors and seniors are invited to the annual Five Rivers College Fair on the morning of Monday, September 23, at Carson Newman University. Signed permission forms are required. Students may pick up permission forms in the Counseling Office now and are due no later than Wednesday, September 18. Late permission forms WILL NOT be accepted. Transportation by bus will be provided.

United States Senate Youth Program

Applications are now being accepted from junior or senior high school students to be a participant in the 2020 United States Senate Youth Program. Two Tennessee delegates will participate in an annual Washington Week in March which includes a variety of events that promote a unique understanding of the structure of our national government. The Hearst Foundation also offers selected state finalists a $10,000 undergraduate scholarship. The student application and instructions for applying are available here. Students who are interested in applying for this program should see Mrs. Byrd in the Counseling Office by October 1 to arrange to take the required exam. All other application materials are due to the counseling office by October 9.

Currently Available Scholarships

Niswonger Foundation Scholarship applications are available in the Counseling Office. Mr. Kinsler will nominate two well-rounded students who demonstrate leadership, academic ability, financial need and a commitment to return to Northeast Tennessee for employment. Applications must be returned to the Counseling Office by September 9, 2019. *Please note West High sets an earlier deadline to allow students the necessary time to request a letter of nomination from another organization (in the event he or she is not chosen as a West High nominee).

If you are not selected as a West High nominee, your packet will be returned to you in order for you to have time to receive a nomination from your church, troop leader or other community organization. Final submission of the application must be made to Niswonger Foundation by September 25, 2019.

East Tennessee State University Roan Scholars

The Roan Scholars Leadership Program is East Tennessee State University’s most prestigious, full-tuition scholarship. Candidates for Roan Scholars are students who have made a significant impact on their school/community and want to make an even greater impact at ETSU and beyond. They have outstanding character, intellectual curiosity, and leadership potential.

Students who wish to be nominated by West High for the Roan Scholars Program must submit a resume and a brief, one page essay addressing their educational goals and desire to attend ETSU. Resumes/essays must be returned to the Counseling Office by September 27, 2019. Mr. Kinsler will identify West High scholarship candidates based on resume/essay. School level nominees will be required to complete an application through the link below before the final deadline in October.

QuestBridge National College Match connects high-achieving, lower income high school seniors with admission and full four-year scholarships to 35 of the nation's best colleges. To qualify you must be able to demonstrate academic excellence and have faced significant financial hardship. Finalists for the program usually come from households than $65,000 per year for a family of 4, but this is not a strict cut-off. The application can be accessed online and must be submitted by September 26, 2019. Students who plan to apply should research the program's requirements and submit the application well before the deadline.

The Gates Millennium Scholars Program, funded by a grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, provides outstanding African American, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian Pacific Islander American, and Hispanic American students with an opportunity to complete an undergraduate college education in any discipline area of interest. Applicants are expected to demonstrate high academic achievement and leadership potential and have significant financial need. The deadline for this competitive scholarship is the afternoon of September 15. Visit for more info and to apply.

Tennessee Promise Scholarship

The Tennessee Promise application is open!! High school seniors in Tennessee may apply for the Tennessee Promise scholarship, which will provide two years of tuition-free attendance at a community or technical college in Tennessee (list of eligible institutions). Tennessee Promise is a last-dollar scholarship, meaning it will cover the cost of tuition and mandatory fees not met by Pell, Hope or the Tennessee Student Assistance Award. As part of the program, students will be paired with a partnering organization, provided with a mentor who will support them during the college application process, and complete the community service requirement.

Counselors will provide help with the Tennessee Promise application during the school day, but students may complete the application on their own, as well. Below is a list of important deadlines.

October 3, 2019 at 9:00 AM - Tennessee Promise informational meeting for Class of 2020, West High auditorium

By November 1, 2019 Complete on-line application

By February 1, 2020 Complete the 2020-21 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) - FAFSA opens October 1

March 4, 2020 at 5:30 PM (arrive by 5:00 PM for check-in)- attend MANDATORY meeting in West High cafeteria [Parents are welcome to attend but may not attend in place of their child!]

By spring of 2020 - apply to school of choice

By July 1, 2020 Complete and report on-line your first 8 hours of community service - only community service completed November 2, 2019 or later will be considered.

Emory, Johns Hopkins, Notre Dame, Washington Univ. Admissions Event in Knoxville

Thursday, Aug. 29th, 7-9pm

9800 Webb School Lane

Knoxville, TN

Join admission representatives from Emory University, Johns Hopkins University, the University of Notre Dame, and Washington University in St. Louis for a group presentation. Learn more about academic programs, student life, admission, and financial aid at these institutions. There will be time for questions and to meet representatives at the end. Register on-line.

Important Dates and Deadlines

September 3: 9th-11th grade fall pictures

September 3: Senior Parent Scholarship/Financial Aid Meeting at 6:00PM

September 4-18: Individual Senior meetings

September 9: Niswonger Foundation Scholarship deadline

September 18: College Fair trip permission forms due to Counseling Office

September 23: College Fair trip to Carson Newman

September 27: ETSU Roan Scholars deadline

October 1: ACT Senior re-take (at school during the school day)

October 1: FAFSA opens - Seniors and their parents can start completing FAFSA on this date

October 3: 1st TN Promise meeting at 9:00AM at West High auditorium

October 22 & 25: Individual Retakes Seniors

November 1: Class of 2020 deadline to apply for TN Promise Scholarship

Nov. 2, 2019 - July 1, 2020 - complete and report 8 hours of community service (must report on-line) (Please note that students may only use community service hours performed between these dates.)

February 1: Complete FAFSA to ensure Tennessee Student Assistance Grant availability (based on income) and TN Promise eligibility

March 4: Mandatory TN Promise meeting at 5:30PM at West High cafeteria (arrive by 5:00)

April 15: Deadline to submit Work Ethic Diploma Requirements

April 15: Deadline to submit Tennessee Scholars Applications

Senior Meetings

Each senior will have an individual senior appointment with his/her school counselor beginning in early September to talk about progress toward graduation and post-secondary planning, including applying to college and scholarships, the financial aid process, etc. Parents/guardians who are interested in attending or who have questions may wish to contact their student's school counselor (see contact information at the bottom of the page).

Register on-line at

West High ACT Code 431-587 (Where your scores are sent)

West High Test Center Code 193810 (Where you take the test)

Upcoming Exam Dates

*September 14, 2019 - registration deadline is August 16 (August 30 for late registration)

*October 26, 2019 - registration deadline is September 20 (October 4 for late registration)

*December 14, 2019 - registration deadline is November 8 (November 22 for late registration)

*February 8, 2020 - registration deadline is January 10 (January 17 for late registration)

*April 4, 2020 - registration deadline is February 28 (March 13 for late registration)

June 13, 2020 - registration deadline is May 8 (May 22 for late registration)

July 18, 2020 - registration deadline is June 19 (June 26 for late registration)

Please visit for information about late registration and photo upload deadlines.

*The test will be administered at Morristown West High School on these dates

Students will not be admitted to the test center without an admission ticket.

To register and to check for late registration information, visit

October 5, 2019 - registration deadline September 6 (September 24 for late registration)

November 2, 2019 - registration deadline October 3 (October 22 for late registration)

December 7, 2019 - registration deadline November 8 (November 26 for late registration)

March 14, 2020 - registration deadline February 14 (March 3 for late registration)

May 2, 2020 - registration deadline April 3 (April 21 for late registration)

June 6, 2020 - registration deadline May 8 (May 27 for late registration)

College Day

Each senior is allowed one college day during the senior year. Students are required to submit a parent note to Ms. Ferguson in the main office at least 3 days BEFORE going on the college visit. During the college visit, students should ask an Admissions representative for a letter or other paperwork indicating that the student participated in a visit to the college/university for attendance purposes. Students should then turn in this letter to the main office to excuse the absence.

Please keep in mind that the best days to visit colleges are Open House or Preview days (typically held on Saturdays) because students and parents have the opportunity to see more campus facilities and have access to more faculty to inquire about specific program requirements, financial aid, admissions, scholarships, housing, etc. A list of these events for some local schools may be found below.

College Open House Dates

East Tennessee State University

Saturday, October 5

Saturday, October 19

King University

October 12

November 9

February 29

March 21

Middle Tennessee State University

September 21 True Blue Preview

October 1 True Blue Tour Johnson City; Prospective Student Reception 6:00 @ the Carnegie Hotel

October 2 True Blue Tour Knoxville; Prospective Student Reception 6:00 @ The Foundry

November 2 True Blue Preview

February 22 True Blue Preview

March 21 True Blue Preview

Tennessee Tech University

October 5

University of Tennessee at Knoxville

Sept. 28 (Big Orange Preview)

TN HOPE Scholarship

How to Qualify:

· Entering freshmen must have either a 21 ACT score OR an overall unweighted minimum 3.0 GPA.

Award Amounts:

For entering freshmen beginning with fall 2015 and thereafter

· Four-Year Institutions and two-year institutions with on-campus housing: Up to $1,750 per full-time enrollment semester as a freshmen and sophomore; then up to $2,250 per full-time enrollment semester as a junior and senior

· Two-Year Institutions: Up to $1,500 per full-time enrollment semester as a freshman and sophomore

Award amounts are available for summer enrollment

· Class status is determined by the postsecondary institution

How to Apply:

· Complete your 2020-21 FAFSA as soon as possible after October 1, 2019. The completion of the FAFSA is your application for the TN Hope Lottery Scholarship.

College Scholarship Deadlines

Below is a list of FIRM scholarship deadlines for some local colleges. Please note that in some cases, students must apply and be accepted before they are able to access the scholarship application(s). Also, many schools require that ALL parts of the application are received by the deadline, including the application, application fee, test scores, and high school transcript. It is important to apply well before the stated deadlines!

Carson-Newman University - Apply Early

East Tennessee State University - December 15 priority deadline for Academic Performance Scholarships

King University - Apply Early

Middle Tennessee State University - December 1

Tennessee Tech University - December 15

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga - December 1

University of Tennessee at Knoxville - November 1 (for competitive scholarships, honors programs); December 15 (general)

Walters State Community College - February 1

Remind Notifications

Please sign up for Remind notifications to stay up-to-date with important events and information!

Text 81010 with the following message - based on the student's grade level and last name. For example, for a senior with the last name Smith, text 81010 to @4Trojans20.

Seniors Class of 2020:

For Last Names A-E: @1Trojans20

For Last Names F-L: @2Trojans20

For Last Names M-R: @3Trojans20

For Last Names S-Z: @4Trojans20

Junior Class of 2021:

For Last Names A-E: @1Trojans21

For Last Names F-L: @2Trojans21

For Last Names M-R: @3Trojans21

For Last Names S-Z: @4Trojans21

More to follow soon for sophomores and freshmen!

College Search Tools

The following websites are good ones for exploring colleges, majors, careers, and financial aid as you begin the college search process:

Big Future

College Navigator

College Scoreboard

Occupational Outlook Handbook

Scholarship Updates

Be sure to visit the Morristown West Counseling Department webpage often for scholarship updates! To access this webpage, please go to the Morristown West High School main webpage and click on the “Scholarships” link on the left (under “News & Events”). Here you will find scholarships listed in order of receipt. This is not an exhaustive list. Many scholarship opportunities are available to students, and it is the student's responsibility to seek these opportunities. Students may wish to research opportunities to apply for scholarships at the post-secondary institution(s) to which they play to apply as well as on-line search engines (some are listed below) and places of student/parent employment. Of course, the TN Promise scholarship is available to eligible students (see article above).


Transcript Requests

Students who need their transcripts sent to colleges may see Mrs. Howerton in the Counseling Office to complete a transcript request form. Please allow at least two weeks to process transcript requests.

Work Ethic Diploma

The Work Ethic Diploma was first offered in the 2015-16 school year as part of a LEAP (Labor Education Alignment Program) grant. The standards that students are required to meet to earn the Work Ethic Diploma reflect the skills and characteristics that are needed for students to be college and career ready. More than 30 Lakeway region businesses and industries guarantee an interview to students who have earned the Work Ethic Diploma and who meet other job-related qualifications.

Seniors will apply in their TNN classes. Students who successfully complete the application process will earn cords to wear during the graduation ceremony. The deadline for meeting requirements and submitting completed applications is April 15, 2020. Please click here to view the Tennessee Work Ethic Diploma standards.

Counseling Office Contact Information

Students are assigned by the first letter of their last name.

  • Tonya Ely: Students A-E
  • Erica Gillett: Students F-L

  • Renae Byrd: Students M-R

  • Melanie Justis: Students S-Z

  • Aimee Howerton: Counseling Office Secretary

  • Office Contact Information:

  • Phone- 423-581-1600
  • Fax- 423-585-3791
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