The Process of Moving On

Story by Sarah Flakus, Staff Writer

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June is right around the corner, which means current seniors will soon be graduating and going their separate ways, while the juniors stay, using the next 11 months to plan out the next four years of their lives.

Towards the end of their junior year, and beginning of their senior year, high school students have to do many things to prepare for their upcoming college applications. They need to take tests to send to schools, fill out their common app, ask for letters of recommendation, write their application essay, and many other things that can cause a lot of unwanted stress in their final year of SHS.

The first thing that many students do is take either the SAT or the ACT. These tests are a way of measuring a student’s academic intelligence and are used to show colleges how somebody is as a student. All juniors at SHS have already taken an SAT test on March 27, 2019, however many people choose to retake it in hope of a better score. Upcoming SAT tests are administered at SHS on August 24, October 5, November 2, and December 7. Students can choose to take the SAT with an essay included to maybe boost their score more, or only take the regular math and reading sections.

Students also need to fill out their Common Application for all colleges they are applying to. Students need to make a Common App account anytime on or after August 1, and from there, they can begin filling the application out. People will need to list the classes they took, extracurriculars they took part in, any notable things that they want to mention, recommendation letters from both teachers and counselors, and a personal essay.

Students begin asking their teachers for letters of recommendation either at the end of their junior year or the beginning of their senior year. These letters show colleges what students are like from a teacher’s point of view which can help admissions predict how well a potential student would fit in. Most people ask teachers from their favorite classes or teachers who have had them multiple years in a row for these letters, as they are typically those that know them best.

Lastly, students need to write a personal essay to send in their application. The topic is chosen from a list and can be about almost anything, as most topics can be molded to students’ ideas. This is the chance for students to show potential schools who they are outside of academics. People can write about the interesting things they have done during their lives, relationships they have built with others and many other things to show who they truly are. College has many social aspects along with academic ones, and this essay can also help admissions see if a potential student is a good fit.

Although people say that junior year is the most important in a high schooler’s life, senior year may be just as important as it is the time where students decide how they are going to spend the next four years of their lives, which can greatly impact their future.

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