January College Guidance Update

Dear Northwood Seniors (and your parents):

HappyNewYearHappy New Year! It’s January 13th, and nearly three-quarter of the members of the class of 2017 have submitted all or most of their college applications. Students returned to Northwood last week, and the big hockey tournament begins today.

Here are some of the topics I’ll be talking to seniors about during these next few weeks. Continue reading

Understanding your [NEW] PSAT Results

To students who took the October PSAT (and their parents):

PSATToday you will receive your PSAT score report [follow the instructions in your email you get from College Board  or log in here: http://psat.org/scorereport]. I know the score report may be difficult to understand, so I have compiled these resources to help you interpret the results.

Currently, college counselors are focusing their attention on the senior class, helping them complete and submit their college applications (a focus I know you’ll appreciate when it’s your turn to apply to college). Later this month I will receive your paper score report, which I will distribute at a meeting. After that, the college counselors and I will begin meeting with the class of 2017 to sketch out a plan for standardized testing, compile a list of possible colleges and create a college application action plan. Until then, a 9th, 10th and 11th grader’s focus should be on getting good grades; right now, nothing matters more for your college prospects than your grades this year, including your midterm exams next week!

Continue reading

Recording and Other Resources: Demystifying the College Testing Process

Dear Parent:

testprepThe College Guidance office at Northwood School held our third webinar of the year tonight, Demystifying the College Testing Process. Thank you to everyone who attended and asked great questions, and thank you to Laura Coash of Revolution Prep, who was our guest expert.

Here are some related resources and information on the topics we discussed tonight:

A week from today is “Testing Day” at Northwood School: 9th graders take the PSAT 8/9, 10th and 11th graders take the PSAT, and 12th graders have four options:

  • Take a full-length practice ACT
  • Take a full-length practice SAT
  • Take two full-length practice SAT Subject Tests
  • Take a full-length practice TOEFL

Seniors need to make their testing choice soon.

The next practice tests are scheduled for the following dates:

  • Sunday, November 6: SAT
  • Sunday, December 4: ACT
  • Sunday, March 5: SAT
  • Sunday, March 19: ACT

All practice tests are at noon in the Lecture Hall. Please note: students may also take an online proctored exam if their schedule prevents them from take the test at the scheduled time.

Students can register for these practice tests by contacting Laura Coash (914-243-1536 and laura.coash@revolutionprep.com). I will send plenty of reminder emails to you and your child before the practice tests.

Best regards,

John Spear
Director of College Guidance

Recording and Other Resources: Affording College Webinar

Dear Parent:

financial-aid-office2The College Guidance office at Northwood School held our second webinar of the year tonight, Affording College: Financial Aid and Scholarships. Thank you to the 21 parents who attended, and thank you to Jennie Hoffman of SUNY Oswego, who was our guest expert.

Here are some related resources and information on the topics we discussed tonight:

Later this school year, we will host two more webinars related to affording college and financial aid: the first one will be practical advice on comparing financial aid offers; the second will be a more general session similar to what we did with tonight’s webinar. Stay tuned for more information about those.

I invite you to attend the Family Weekend session on the college search and application process. See the Family Weekend schedule for more information.

Finally, save the date for the next College Guidance webinar:

Demystifying the College Testing Process
Wednesday, October 12 at 7PM

Best regards,

John Spear
Director of College Guidance

20 Questions to ask college representatives

askWhether you meet them at a college fair or on a campus visit, college reps genuinely enjoy talking to high school students and answering questions about their college. The following questions will help start a good dialogue:

  1. What makes your college unique?
  2. What academic programs is your college most known for?
  3. How would you describe the kids that go there? Where do most of them come from?
  4. Where do kids hang out on campus?
  5. What happens on weekends—are there things to do on campus or in town, or do most kids go home?
  6. Are fraternities and sororities a big part of campus life?
  7. What are the housing options for freshmen?
  8. Do many students live off campus?
  9. Is there a sports complex or fitness center?
  10. What are the most popular clubs and activities?
  11. What’s the security like on campus?
  12. What’s the surrounding area like? Is it easy to get around?
  13. What are the most popular majors?
  14. How would you describe the academic pressure and workload?
  15. What support services are available (academic advisers, tutors, etc.)?
  16. Do I need to bring my own computer?
  17. What’s the faculty like? How accessible are they outside of class?
  18. Are there opportunities for internships?
  19. Is there job placement help for graduates?
  20. Are any big changes in the works that I should know about?

Source: Get it Together for College 2nd ed. (College Board 2011).

Webinar Follow-up: What Parents Should Expect About the Senior Year

the-road-to-collegeTHANK YOU!!

We want to thank all of the parents who attended the webinar, What Parents Should Expect About the Senior Year. We had some excellent questions, and I hope that you found it informative and worthwhile.

Attached is the presentation slides, for those who would like to review what we shared during the webinar. We are also providing a link to a recording of the webinar, in case you missed it or want to watch part of it again.

Thanks again, and we hope to see you on future webinars!

Sincerely,

John Spear, Annie Edwards, Tim Weaver and Kathie Moore

Northwood’s College Guidance Team

Webinar Follow-up: What Parents Should Expect About the Senior Year

the-road-to-collegeTHANK YOU!!

We want to thank all of the parents who attended the webinar, What Parents Should Expect About the Senior Year. We had some excellent questions, and I hope that you found it informative and worthwhile.

Here are the presentation slides, for those who would like to review what we shared during the webinar. We are also providing a link to a recording of the webinar, in case you missed it or want to watch part of it again.

Thanks again, and we hope to see you on future webinars!
Sincerely,

John Spear, Annie Edwards, Tim Weaver and Kathie Moore

Northwood’s College Guidance Team