TeenLife Blog

Supporting teen success, one post at a time

Category: College Admissions

Posted July 29, 2019, 8 a.m. by Sarah Shemkus | View Comments
Do You Know These Dirty Dozen College Essay Mistakes?

The people who score ACT, SAT and college application essays read a lot of ACT, SAT and college application essays. A whole lot. Some of the writing they assess stands out from this crowded field for good reasons: dazzling writing, penetrating insights, incisive analysis. Other entrance test or college essays, however, stand out for silly errors and cringeworthy lapses of judgment. To help you avoid falling into this latter group, we’ve rounded up a dozen very basic – and surprisingly common – mistakes to avoid when you sit down to write your test or college essays. And if you need ...

Posted July 26, 2019, 8 a.m. by Shirag Shemmassian | View Comments
after-school

There’s a particular piece of bad advice when it comes to college admissions that ought to be debunked because it keeps many students out of their dream schools each year. It comes in many forms, including: “Join as many clubs and teams as you can, and try to be president or captain.” “Be as well-rounded as possible.” “Admissions committees want to see students who did X/Y/Z activity.” Students who take this advice very seriously end up disappointed when college application decisions roll in and they find more unexpected rejections than surprising acceptances, regardless of their high grades and ACT/SAT scores. ...

Posted July 25, 2019, 2 a.m. by TeenLife | 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 July 17, 2019, 10 a.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
What to Expect at College Orientation

Colleges instituted orientation for incoming students to ease the transition into college. Freshman orientation is a way for students to meet other students, become familiar with campus services, and register for fall classes. Every student attending college in the fall should add orientation to their to-do list this summer. While orientation has been traditionally for students, in the last 10 years, colleges have recognized the fact that parents need help dealing with the transition. To the traditional student orientation, they have added parent orientation. If you have a teen heading to college in the fall, parents should consider attending if ...

Posted July 16, 2019, 10:55 a.m. by Venkates Swaminathan | View Comments
Adversity testing score

Understanding how the new Environmental Context Dashboard impacts your college application. In mid-May, the Wall Street Journal broke the story that the College Board “plans to assign an adversity score to every student who takes the SAT.” The new score has been widely discussed in the college admissions community, and could change the admissions process significantly over time, but the immediate question for many parents and students is this: How does it affect my teen and their application to college? The term “adversity score” is a misnomer for what the College Board calls an Environmental College Dashboard. Over the past ...

Posted July 9, 2019, 10 a.m. by Moira McCullough | View Comments
College Tour

When researching colleges, every interaction with a potential school plays a role in the decision whether to apply. Everything from the drive up to campus to the interaction with a tour guide to an Instagram post you scroll past right before you fall asleep is evidence you can use to decide whether a school is a good fit for you. Choosing to apply to a specific university is more than making a pro/con list and confirming they have your major—it is a visceral feeling that this place could become a home. College admissions is about crafting the most compelling and ...

Posted July 5, 2019, 10 a.m. by Sarah Good | View Comments
Paying for College

It can be fun to daydream about college: the ivy-draped campus, making new friends in the dorm, long intellectual discussions with like-minded classmates. Thinking about paying for it all, however, is far less fun. For the 2018-19 school year, the average cost for an in-state student at a four-year public college was $9,716, according to U.S. News & World Report. Want to attend a private school? The average price tag skyrockets to more than $35,600. And the numbers keep inching up every year. So what are educationally ambitious students — and their parents — to do? Fear not: You have ...

Posted June 28, 2019, 10:44 a.m. by Cara Imperato | View Comments
Employment

Want the perfect job offer before you’ve even crossed the stage at graduation? That’s every student’s dream — and it’s possible. These majors will prepare you for well-paying careers with steady growth or constant demand. Let’s take a look at each one – and the doors they’ll open for you. Nursing Nursing puts you on the front lines of health care. You should be comfortable with the sciences since you’ll take courses like anatomy, chemistry, microbiology, and nutrition. Your major will also include hands-on experience through supervised clinical internships. After you pass a national exam, you’ll be ready to practice ...

Posted June 25, 2019, 10:54 a.m. by Sarah Good | View Comments
Social media

You Snapchat and you Instagram, and sometimes you tweet. Occasionally you even spend a few minutes on Facebook catching up with your aunts and uncles. Social media is a fact of contemporary life, just another way to keep the conversation going with your friends and classmates. Sometimes, though, this comfort with free-flowing digital dialogue can have a pretty severe downside. Earlier this month, Kyle Kashuv, a survivor of the Parkland shooting, reported on Twitter that his admission to Havard was rescinded when racist texts he had sent in the past surfaced. And two years ago, 10 students lost their chance ...

Posted June 15, 2019, 1 p.m. by Suzanne Shaffer | View Comments
10 Summer Activities That Will Turn Admissions’ Heads

In today’s competitive college admissions market, students are faced with the task of setting themselves apart from other applicants. Colleges look for students who are dedicated to academics but they want to build a well-rounded incoming freshman class. Admission officers look for those who demonstrate interesting and diverse qualities, not just those who spend 100 percent of their time studying. Colleges need and want students who are committed to activities that they are passionate about. The summer creates opportunities for students to demonstrate this quality, whether it's in a structured summer program for teenagers, or individually. The last thing you ...

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