September 2021 Senior Newsletter

Hello Seniors,


School has been back in session for about a week now. We have been impressed with how adaptable, diligent and focused you have been with getting back into the rhythm after summertime. It is going to be a great year!


Newsletters like this will be sent out every month this school year. While the length of the newsletter will vary, there is always important information contained within. Please take the time to read it so you feel comfortable working through this year as well as planning for the future.


Deadlines


Senior year deadlines become much more important. Whether you are going into Employment, Enlisting in the military, or Enrolling in college, your post secondary (high school) plans hinge on your ability to meet deadlines.


Unlike some assignments you have had in high school, many deadlines in the world beyond high school are non-negotiable; when the deadline closes, you are out. Please do not miss out on any opportunities because you missed a deadline. Tip: create reminders and appointments that notify of the upcoming deadlines so you do not forget.



College/Future Search


There are a ton of college and technical schools in the United States. You have preferences as to what you are looking for in a college/technical school: e.g. major, price, on-campus housing, etc. Trying to match all of your preferences to a college may feel daunting. Using college-matching websites can help ease the overwhelming feeling by making the computer do a lot of the work for you. Bigfuture is one college matching website to give a try : https://bigfuture.collegeboard.org 


Similar to the college search, Roadtrip Nation can help match your interests with careers. Additionally, Roadtrip Nation maps a plan to obtain that career. Check it out: https://roadtripnation.com/


College Application Types/Deadlines


Whether you plan to apply to college directly through the college you want to attend or through a website like Common App, it is important to know the difference in application types. Application types generally include: early action, early decision, regular decision and rolling admission. At the very least, you need to know that early decision is binding; meaning, “You are obligated to enroll if you are accepted”. Read about the different types here: https://www.shmoop.com/college/early-decision-early-action-regular-decision-rolling-admission.html


Common Application (CA)


Many colleges students apply to use Common Application. CA allows you to fill out one electronic application to apply to multiple colleges. Check to see whether or not the college you are thinking about going to accepts CA as it can be a time saver. 


Whether you are a senior at Bloom-Carroll taking classes at the high school, the career center or at a college, you will need to invite Mr. Kelley as your school counselor within CA. Mr. Kelley’s email is [email protected]


Click here for CA’s step by step guide to getting started with CA.


Requesting Transcripts


If you need a transcript for personal records or sent to a college, you can do that electronically by visiting Bloom-Carroll's website and clicking on "Forms" (or click here). Then, under "High School" you will see "Transcript Request-Current Students Only."  You will need to complete the transcript request every time you want a transcript sent to a college. BCHS processes transcripts in one to two business days. 


Note: You will most likely need a copy of your transcript in front of you when applying to college as many of the questions relate back to records that you will find on your transcript (GPA,Class Rank, etc). 


Common App Transcript Request Exception: As long as you invite Mr. Kelley to your CA then you do NOT  need to complete a transcript request (for any school listed within your CA). However, it is still recommended that you complete a transcript request for CA because if something goes wrong (email address is spelled wrong within CA, etc) then the invite will end up lost electronically and the counseling office will not know about it. In short, completing the transcript request form AND sending an invite through CA is the best practice to ensure your CA is completed appropriately.










Letter of Recommendation (LOR)


If you need a letter of recommendation written for a college, scholarship or some other reason, it is important you go about asking the recommender (teacher, coach, counselor, etc) appropriately. Make sure you give the recommender plenty of time to complete your LOR. The more time you give them, generally the better outcome you will receive since they will have more time to think about it. Generally, it is a good idea to give the recommender about two weeks advance notice before it is due.


Here is a quick breakdown of the steps on how to ask someone to write a letter of recommendation for you. 1. Fill out the LOR Information Sheet (click here for an electronic copy or stop down to the counseling office to pick up a hard copy). 2. Make copies of the LOR Information sheet in case you need to ask multiple recommenders to write a letter for you. 3. Politely ask the recommender if they would be willing to write a letter for you (make sure to include when you would need it by). 4. If they say “yes,” thank them, and then hand them the LOR Information sheet. 5. Lastly, let them know where/how to send the LOR (Common App Upload, Emailed, etc).


College Representatives


Bloom-Carroll High School is working with local college representatives with the plan that they are able to visit BCHS during the school day to meet with students interested in that college. If that college permits travel, and the availability aligns with BCHS, there will be communication sent out on which college is visiting, when, and how to sign up.



College Visits


Up to two college visits will be excused each year when the proper paperwork is completed. Of course you can visit as many as you want when you are not scheduled to be in class. In order to be approved for the college visit, you will need to complete the college visit form before your absence. You can acquire the form by visiting the counseling office or by clicking here.


Financial Aid/FAFSA


FAFSA stands for Free Application for Federal Student Aid. In short, Financial Aid can help you pay for college. You will need to complete FAFSA in order to utilize some of the advantages. FAFSA can also be a bit complicated as it involves taxes, parent/guardian information, etc. There will be more information sent out in the future, but for now know there are a couple items that you should know. 


First, FAFSA opens up on October 1st (for the next school year). Secondly, FAFSA needs to be completed in order for colleges to give you a more accurate reflection of what you are actually going to pay.  There will be more information on FAFSA in the following newsletters. 


ACT/SAT Retake?


College entrance exams like the ACT and SAT can help your chances of getting into college if your scores are high just as they can hurt your chances if your scores are low. However, many colleges and universities have transitioned to a “test-optional” application.  I would recommend checking with the specific college to see what their testing policy is. 


If you would like to take/retake the ACT/SAT, it is best to do that sooner rather than later. Remember, after you take the test there will still be some processing time by the testing organization before you get your scores back. You would need scores back if you are looking to have them included in your college application. 

Click here to schedule to take the ACT

Click here to schedule to take the SAT.


Scholarships 


Scholarships can help you pay for college. Scholarship searching can feel endless. To aid you in the scholarship search, BC has created a scholarship resource list. This scholarship resource list  contains scholarship search engines as well as local and national scholarships. Scholarships will consistently be added to this list: scholarships will always be added directly below the previous listed scholarship. The scholarship resource list is in google sheets format and can be downloaded in excel allowing you to sort the scholarships as you see fit; e.g. Sort by deadline, dollar amount, etc.

BCHS Scholarship Resource

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