Updated August 2018

Dear Senior:

collegejustahead“Senior…” I like the sound of that, and I hope you do, too. I trust you are having a relaxing, yet productive, summer vacation. I am contacting you in hopes of an early start on some matters related to your college applications. Time passes quickly in the fall; you will find this especially true since you will probably be busier and more industrious regarding your academic work than ever before.

I hope that you are visiting colleges and having interviews at some of your possible college choices. Frequent contact with admissions offices demonstrates your interest in the school and may improve your prospect for admission.

Returning students, log in to your Family Connection account often because once there you’ll find a list of tasks assigned to you, your updated GPA and test scores, a résumé-writing tool and dozens of tools to research colleges on your list.

To log in, go to https://student.naviance.com/northwoodschool/; your username is your Northwood email address and you chose your password during the spring. You’ll probably notice the website has a new look, but the features are basically the same.

Please keep your list of “Colleges I’m Thinking About” up-to-date. Add schools you may apply to and delete schools no longer under consideration.

There is one SAT scheduled for August 25, and you should register for and take that test if you have been doing test prep this summer. There is still time to register. Northwood School is a test center, but you’ll probably want to test near home. There are no interstation test centers for the August SAT.

There is an ACT on September 8, and Northwood is a test center for that date. You should register for that test if you have been doing test prep this summer. The registration deadline for the September ACT is August 10.

college pennantFamily discussion of your college choices over the summer is vital and might well be aided by a book like the Fiske Guide to Colleges, which also has an outstanding iPad app. You should write or email to any school whose program looks attractive to you. College Admission 101 by the Princeton Review’s Robert Franek provides sound advice on the college search and application process. Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be, by Frank Bruni is an outstanding read for students and parents. If you enjoy listening to podcasts, I recommend the “Getting In” podcast from Slate. It’s outstanding.

You should create a Common Application account on or after August 1 (it won’t be live until then). If you have already created a Common Application account, be sure to “Roll Over” your account to this school year. The Common App has clear instructions. Do not create a second Common Application account.

You may have heard about the new “The Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success,” also called the “Coalition Application.” More than 130 colleges accept this new application platform. Nearly all also use the Common Application or their own application. Because it is brand new and untested, we strongly encourage students to not use the Coalition App and instead use the Common Application. We’ll support students who use the Coalition Application. By applying on the Common App, students ensure faster delivery of their materials.

You may hear about ZeeMe (www.zeemee.com), a free web-based service designed to help students market themselves to colleges and universities. Some colleges and universities are using ZeeMe, but none require it. Feel free to check it out and use it if you’d like. We’ve also heard good things about Raise.me, a new micro-scholarship service that is brand new and getting good reviews.

Visit the College Counseling section of the www.NorthwoodSchool.com website; find it under “Academics.” There you will have links to the college counseling blog, Family Connection and the College Counseling at Northwood Facebook page. Please follow us on Facebook.

Do not submit any applications this summer. All applications must be reviewed by your college counselor before being submitted. No essay is to be submitted unless a Northwood college counselor reads it first. See “What Students and Parents Need to Know about Senior Year and the College Application Process” for additional important information.

Please note that there will be an administrative charge of $10.00 for each transcript package mailed or faxed to a college after the student’s year of graduation.

If you have any questions regarding these matters, email me (spearj@northwoodschool.com). I look forward to working with you in September toward acceptance at your first-choice college.

Best Wishes,

John Spear
Director of College Counseling

Enclosures:

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