TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time
Posted Sept. 27, 2016, 9 a.m. by Mary Grauerholz | View Comments
Four Steps to Avoid Gap Year Culture Shock

Before she went to Japan as an exchange student at age 21, Rebecca Fitzgerald thought she was well prepared for culture shock. But the cultural reality was harder than she imagined. “I came to realize that I had a very surface understanding of it,” Fitzgerald says. “But what I had learned – the visual parts of a culture, food, the way people dress – is the tip of the iceberg.” The disorienting parts were what she calls “the invisible” belief systems: the ways people live, how they perceive other cultures. On top of all that, Fitzgerald felt guilty. “I thought ...

Posted Sept. 23, 2016, 9 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
The 5 Best Reasons to Consider Private School

Perhaps your student is restless in large public school classes, has a long wait for an appointment to discuss college with the public school guidance counselor, or is lost in a big public high school that has little sense of community. If so, it might be time to consider private school. Private school advantages include smaller classes, sufficient staffing and a sense of camaraderie that helps support students. Don’t be turned off by the sticker price. Most private schools want diverse student bodies and offer scholarship opportunities. So if your public school student is yearning for something more, and you ...

Posted Sept. 19, 2016, 9:27 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
3 Ways to Take Charge of Your College Search

So many of my daughter’s friends chose a college based on all the wrong reasons: a boyfriend was going there; a parent was an alum; it was close to home; it had a prestigious name; the football team was rated; or they simply waited until the last minute and were out of options. Many times, students and parents just let the college decision happen. They automatically assume that once they decide to go to college, they will be able to get in somewhere, even if it’s a local community college. But you should take charge of your college search and ...

Posted Sept. 15, 2016, 9 a.m. by Marie Schwartz | View Comments
Announcing TeenLife's 2016 Guide to Performing and Visual Arts

If you have an “arts kid,” creativity probably runs through his or her brain all the time – snippets of script, a few bars of music, the colors for a new pot glaze. And then comes the time when all those imaginative ideas have to be corralled and discussed to figure out the next step after high school. TeenLife Media and the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) can help! TeenLife’s 2016 Guide to Performing & Visual Arts Colleges is the official program for the 22 performing and visual arts college fairs NACAC is sponsoring nationwide this fall. Founded ...

Posted Sept. 12, 2016, 9:54 a.m. by Gayle Chaky | View Comments
3 Questions to Answer About College Your Junior Year

As you move through high school, you may be anticipating senior year and the pressure of college applications with excitement and dread. Dread? Yes, too many high school students dread the college admissions process because they really aren’t quite sure why they are going to college in the first place, other than it seems like a good path to take after high school. How can you possibly answer those application questions or write college essays if you don’t even know why you are filling it out? In order to avoid the last-minute panic, take some time during your junior year ...

Posted Sept. 7, 2016, 9 a.m. by Dana Elmore | View Comments
7 Questions to Ask About Online AP Courses

Advanced placement courses can provide students with tremendous educational opportunities and a jump on college admissions. Not all schools, however, offer AP classes and even if your high school does, the options or scheduling may not meet your needs. One alternative is taking AP classes online. Who offers online AP classes, and how do they differ from classroom-based courses? What factors should you consider when trying to determine the best option for you? Here are seven questions to keep in mind: 1. Who offers online advanced placement classes? There are a number of organizations, schools and colleges that offer online ...

Posted Sept. 5, 2016, 9 a.m. by Lion's Heart | View Comments
Why Volunteering is Important for College Applications

It seems easy: You help someone or some organization out for few hours and - shazam! - you get to check off another box on that college application, the one for community service. But a volunteer commitment is much more complicated than a check-off box. What really counts as community service? Why does it matter? What are colleges really looking for? Here at Lion’s Heart we have the insider’s view of volunteering and why it’s important for your own well-being, as well as college applications We are a national network of teens in grades 7 through 12 who volunteer in ...

Posted Aug. 31, 2016, 9:50 a.m. by Elizabeth Suneby | View Comments
How to Get Started with Community Service

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.” Anthropologist, Margaret Mead (1901–1978) Why should you reach out through volunteer opportunities in high school? When you reach out to your community, you’re not just making a difference for others. Community service projects have huge benefits for volunteers themselves, such as: 1. Helping out. Whether you choose to focus on people, animals, or the environment, there are countless ways to make a difference. Nonprofits have all kinds of volunteer opportunities for teens. Organizations and their beneficiaries truly ...

Posted Aug. 24, 2016, 9:40 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
How to Get Started on a Career in Sports Medicine

Sports medicine gives you the opportunity to mesh your love of sports with the wish to work in a health-related career. There are many different degree levels and specialities, ranging from fitness trainers with two-year associate degrees, to physicians with years of medical school specializing in treating sports injuries. Employment opportunities in this profession are expected to expand by 21 percent between 2012 and 2022, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics - one of the fastest rates of growth of any healthcare field. What is sports medicine? In the simplest terms, sports medicine is helping people improve athletic ...

Posted Aug. 18, 2016, 9 a.m. by Kay Keough | View Comments
4 Strategies to Fund the Gap Year of Your Dreams

Whether you want to see the world, test out an interest or learn a new skill, taking a gap year after high school can send you in an exciting new direction. But is it possible to have an affordable life-changing experience and still have enough money to return to the even-more expensive world of academia? Absolutely, say the experts, and they are keenly aware of your budgetary concerns. “Affordability is kind of my thing because, frankly, I’m kind of shocked when I see some of the prices for these gap programs,” says Sue Di Filippo, owner of the student consulting ...

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