TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time
Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 1:59 p.m. by Scott Ingram | View Comments
Study Proves Benefits of Gap Year Programs

Thinking Beyond Borders (TBB) is proud to announce the outcomes of the first comprehensive impact assessment of our gap year programs. We’ve worked hard to create innovative programs, and we are thrilled to illustrate the exceptional impact they’ve had on our students. We’re publishing these findings to highlight best practices and contribute to the conversations around both international education and the college transition. Why This Study Matters There are two groups of people who will find this series useful: 1) those seeking a solution to the current crisis in higher education; 2) those seeking to educate a new generation of ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 12:43 p.m. by Customer Service | View Comments
Summer Program Promoting Sustainability

Joshua Nodiff gained insight and passion for the environment during his overnight summer program. In His Own Words: Joshua Nodiff Shares His Summer Experience at BELL. Tell us a little bit about BELL The Brown Environmental Leadership Lab (BELL) was a remarkable experience that certainly changed my life for the better. The program is centered around environmental science, hands-on education, social activism, and community leadership. BELL brought together a diverse group of likeminded students from all over the world that subsequently became a family to me. Why did you choose BELL? While initially researching for programs to attend last summer, ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 12:28 p.m. by Elizabeth Suneby | View Comments
Using Pigtails to Stand Up Against Bullying

High school student Maisie Kate Miller from Marblehead, Massachusetts was teased for wearing pigtails. “Who wears pigtails still? What is this, kindergarten?” mocked the bully as she passed Maisie in the hallway. The taunt came during a difficult week for Maisie, which is one of the reasons she broke down in tears, as explained to the Washington Post. Unfortunately, this was not the first time Maisie was bullied. But despite the pain, tears and anger, the pigtail bully persuaded her to do something about it. Using social media, Maisie asked her school community to stand up against bullying by wearing ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 12:16 p.m. by Elizabeth Suneby | View Comments
Handling College Rejections: A Role Reversal

My daughter applied Early Decision (ED) to her dream college. She was flat out rejected. I was incensed that the school turned her away. She had the grades. She had the scores. She had substantial extracurricular activities. And she is a really nice kid. But that didn’t matter. Yes, I know that college admission is a numbers game, and that there are far too many qualified candidates vying for every precious spot at top colleges and universities. I knew that only 19 percent of the applicants to my daughter’s ED college were admitted the year prior. But when those statistics ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 12:01 p.m. by Elizabeth Suneby | View Comments
Public Vs. Private High School: One Family's Perspective

My son recently graduated from a high-quality private high school and my daughter is in 12th grade at a high-quality public one. My son prospered at private school, while my daughter would not change her educational experience at public school. I have an inside view of both worlds. Rather than provide my perspective on the pros and cons of each educational option, I am sharing the astute insights my daughter offered when she lobbied to stay in public school. Here’s a recap of our conversation with my points and her counterpoints: Just think, in private school you’ll get: Intellectual and ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 11:34 a.m. by Customer Service | View Comments
Amazing Teen: Jordyn Schara

What were you doing when you were 14 years old? Most of us were entering high school, spending time with friends, arguing with our parents about curfew, and shopping for the newest trend. Jordyn Schara, a Wisconsin teen, probably did not have time to do any of these things when she was 14. Instead, she was creating her first community service project. Jordyn founded Project READ (Reading Equipment for America’s Defenders) with her brother when she turned 14. The Schara siblings shipped over 1,800 pounds of books, candy and other reading materials to troops overseas. That same year, Jordyn educated ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 11:15 a.m. by Ethan Knight | View Comments
3 Easy Steps to Plan the Perfect Gap Year

Planning a successful and structured gap year should be done with purpose and intent. There are many things to consider in advance. Here are a few simple steps to help you get started on your gap year journey. [Ready to browse through gap year programs?] Step 1: Consider the Following Questions • What needs to happen to make college a reality after your gap year? Do you need to defer, take a leave-of-absence, or arrange for a Consortium Agreement (a financial aid agreement between two schools)? What deadlines and deposits need to be paid to secure your enrollment? • How ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 11:10 a.m. by Jill Tipograph | View Comments
5 Things to Consider When Your Teen Travels Over The Summer

You’ve enrolled your teen in their summer program(s). Check it off your list. While your teen may think he/she is ready to conquer the world with independence, parents often know best. Help them prepare and transition to their away-from-home program with these tips: 1. Review with your teen the program’s guidelines, requirements, and restrictions. This includes electronics, laptops, cell phone policies, clothing, amount of permissible luggage (remember he/she has to transport it!). Your teen needs to respect these rules as well as the program’s staff. As most smart phones have cameras, some programs do not allow these devices. Look into ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 10:58 a.m. by Rosa Heyman | View Comments
My Carefree Summer As A CIT

Rosa Heyman Reflects on Her Summer Experience as a Counselor in Training (CIT). How the stress, responsibilities and FOMO transformed into a carefree summer. Summer Camp and FOMO When I remember how I spent the summer after my sophomore year of high school—working as a counselor-in-training (CIT) at my sleep away camp in New Hampshire—certain images and memories flood back to me more vividly than do more recent memories from my final years of high school or early years of college. Waking up to the sound of the bugle in the morning and the first shock of the cold air ...

Posted Jan. 17, 2014, 10:43 a.m. by Lesli Amos | View Comments
A New Year, A New FAFSA

January 1st – it’s a day of resolutions, new beginnings, and for college students, the first day to apply for federal financial aid. The FAFSA, or the Free Application for Federal Student Aid, helps your family and prospective universities determine how much money you will be expected to contribute towards higher education. Don’t skip this one – it’s the only way to get federal grants and loans, and almost all colleges use the FAFSA to determine how much financial aid you will need. You can apply for the FAFSA online and through the mail. Not sure if your family qualifies ...

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