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9th & 10th Grades: Start Your Engines
- Meet with your TRIO Coordinator to create a plan for preparing for college
- Tell your teachers and counselor that you plan on going to college
- Develop strong study habits – pay attention in class, complete your homework on time and ask for help when you don’t understand something
- Get involved in activities after school. Join clubs, play sports, get a job or volunteer in your community.
- Stay involved in these activities throughout your high school career to demonstrate consistency
- Work with your school counselor to take the PSAT and/or ACT PLAN/EXPLORE.
- Be open to explore new possibilities. Here’s a great resource to start with.
- Start to gather information about colleges – use college search tools or ask your guidance counselor for resources.
- Use the Coalition For College’s free college planning tools, including the free online storage locker.
- Use your summer to read, attend pre-college camps, take enrichment classes, or seek employment – this is a great opportunity to better your verbal, writing, critical thinking and leadership skills. NC State has a listing of pre-college programs.
11th Grades: Pedal to the Metal
- Make sure you are on track to meet the minimum course requirements for college admission
- Register to take the SAT and/or ACT multiple times (Ask your TRIO Coordinator for a fee waiver).
- Narrow down your list of colleges based on where you will thrive best. Keep in consideration the school’s size, location, whether they have the major you’re interested in and extracurricular activities available. You can research schools on College Board.
- Attend college fairs in your area to speak with admissions reps from schools you are interested in.
- Find an internship or volunteer opportunity in the field you plan to study.
- Use breaks (winter break spring break, and summer) you have from school to visit colleges.
- Make a list of teachers, coaches, and community members that you may be able to ask for recommendation letters when you apply to college.
- Research application and scholarship deadlines and requirements for your senior year.
- Remind parents/guardians to prepare tax information for your financial aid application.
12th Grade: Home Stretch
- Visit the Senior website to familiarize yourself with everything you need to know about applying.
- Schedule your one on one Fall Senior Meeting with your TRIO Coordinator.
- Select 3-5 colleges – a reach school, safety school and match school.
- Mark application deadlines on your calendar (Early Decision vs General application deadlines).
- Ask your TRIO coordinator for a fee waiver (SAT/ACT and/or College Application Fee Waivers)!
- Reach out to your teachers, coaches, and community members for letters of recommendation.
- Visit this website to get an FSA ID number to e-sign your Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).
- On October 1, start and complete your financial aid application – be aware of institutions priority deadlines.
- Apply for Scholarships.
- Complete the RDS residency form.
- Student athletes: register with the NCAA Clearinghouse for eligibility certification.
- Schedule your one on one Spring Senior meeting with your TRIO Coordinator.
- Compare admissions decisions and financial aid packages.
- Apply for Scholarships.
- Take AP/IB exams and send results to your future college.
- May 1st is the national deadline to confirm your enrollment – decide which institution you wish to attend.
- Join admitted student groups to connect with future classmates.
- Send an official final transcript to your future college.
- Figure out housing arrangements, orientation dates, and placement testing requirements.
- Pay housing and enrollment deposit fees.