TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time
Posted May 3, 2016, 10:45 a.m. by Marie Schwartz | View Comments
Why Malia Obama’s Gap Year will Make a Big Difference

Why Malia Obama's Gap Year will make a Big Difference Dear Malia: It’s great that you’re going to Harvard but hearty congratulations on a more important long-term choice: your decision to take a gap year. While Harvard encourages freshmen to take a year off after high school, it’s not easy for most seniors to buck the typical American pattern of going straight to college. Gaps may be popular in the United Kingdom and other places but here in the United States we have yet to make it realistic for the vast majority of students. Your decision encourages us to talk ...

Posted May 2, 2016, 11:36 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
Watch for These 6 Red Flags the Summer Before College

Watch for These 6 Red Flags the Summer Before College Every soon-to-be college student experiences some level of fear and hesitancy about this next step. It’s natural to feel college anxiety and be concerned about doing well in a new environment. During the summer before my daughter went to college, I began noticing some red flags. At first, I ignored them, knowing she was simply nervous. But as the weeks rolled on and more and more began popping up, I began to get concerned. Had she changed her mind about college? Was she willing to turn her back on what ...

Posted April 29, 2016, 9 a.m. by Emily Southey | View Comments
Seniors, Take These 6 Pieces of Advice to College

Seniors, Take These 6 Pieces of Advice to College Going off to college can be very nerve-wracking. It’s a huge change, and let’s be honest, your friends and family have been telling you nonstop how awesome college is going to be for the past year. I left home with incredibly high expectations (and a very queasy stomach). College was supposed to be the best time of my life … right? Honestly, I had an amazing four years, but there are definitely a few things I wish I had known prior to my freshman year. Now a year out of college, ...

Posted April 28, 2016, 9 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
Two Important Reasons for Going To Community College

Community college gets a bad rap. Both students and parents often ignore the idea of community college as an end in itself or as a tool for getting a four-year college degree. They think commuity college credits are not valued by prestigious institutions. Or, they worry about how an employer will view two-year schools on a resume. Years ago, I was one of those parents. I felt community college was simply a scapegoat for those students who couldn’t hack the real world of college. By observing my son’s college path, however, my eyes were opened to its value. After working ...

Posted April 27, 2016, 9:30 a.m. by Nicolaus Jannasch | View Comments
Build These Habits Before You Get to College

In college, I faced more “life” challenges than academic ones. But now, at the age of 22, I know that a lot of these problems could have been avoided with a little forethought while I was still in high school. So if you’re reading this and you’re in high school, you can use these ideas to help yourself get ready for college. Habit No. 1: Eat right and exercise. Back at home I never was really into health and fitness. I played lacrosse and ran the sprints with everyone else, but beyond that I didn’t have any schedule whatsoever. For ...

Posted April 26, 2016, 9 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
These 4 Big Scholarships Could Pay Your College Tuition

These 4 Big Scholarships Could Pay Your College Tuition Imagine heading to college with absolutely no money worries. Just one college scholarship and you cross that worry off the list and perhaps avoid a fat college loan. Of course, these scholarships are not for the faint of heart. They require some hard work and strong determination, but the end prize will be more than worth your effort. Students who are focused on winning money for college should consider these four opportunities. Paradigm ChallengeAmount: Up to $100,000Deadline: May 1, 2016 The Paradigm Challenge is an annual competition that inspires youth innovation ...

Posted April 25, 2016, 9 a.m. by Stacey Brook | View Comments
4 Strategies to Get Off the Waitlist for Students Who Hate Waiting

I wish I could say I was a patient person, but the truth is, like everyone else in our culture of instant gratification, I want that YouTube unboxing video to load in seconds, my Chinese food to arrive 10 minutes after I order it and the results of my hard work to pay off immediately (yay blogging!). So when my students come to me brandishing college admission wait-list letters and expressions of frustration, I truly understand their pain. “I feel you,” I say to them while peeking out the window for the 40th time to check on the arrival of ...

Posted April 22, 2016, 9 a.m. by Marie Schwartz | View Comments
8 STEM Programs for Your Teen this Summer

8 STEM Programs for Your Teen this Summer The school year is ending and if your high school student loves STEM, you need to move quickly to nail a spot in a chemistry camp, high school summer medical program, game-design summer camp, or another science, technology, engineering or math summer program. How do you find the right STEM summer camp for teens? Consider the program’s focus, its mentors and teachers, cost and financial aid, and how its curriculum or activities might boost the STEM skills your teen needs. For instance, is the program focused in the lab or out in ...

Posted April 21, 2016, 9 a.m. by Katrielle Soussana | View Comments
5 Tips to Keep Motivated in High School

Feeling blah? 5 Tips to Keep Motivated in High School As students, we all know how hard it is to stay motivated and get good grades in school. So, sometimes we get stressed out. As a result, we get complacent about schoolwork. If, like me, you’re someone for whom academics are going to be important for your future, then you can’t afford to become complacent. If you don’t want to lose focus on your school work, then I have a very important piece of advice. It’s from my father, who is very important to me. He says, you can either ...

Posted April 20, 2016, 9 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
5 Ways a Summer Program Can Help You Get Into College

5 Ways a Summer Program Can Help You Get Into College Summer is quickly approaching and you face the inevitable question: How do I spend my summer? Should I get a job, go to camp, or just take it easy and enjoy my vacation? A college-bound student however, should ask this question: How can I use the summer to explore my passion and interests? The best place to begin is with pre-college summer programs. These programs are available for all areas of interests such as sports, creative arts and STEM. Thye come in all lengths and budgets; some are day ...

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