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Article contributed by guest author, Nicole Bozick.
Usually this is the time of year when college-bound students are busy preparing applications and planning for college visits and interviews. This year, however, the college admissions landscape paints a much different picture. COVID-19 has thrown colleges a serious curveball, forcing them to temporarily close their doors or turn online, pause study abroad programs, and more. As you embark on these unprecedented and challenging times, Futures Academy can help. We are a private school for grades 6-12 with dedicated College Readiness Counselors who are experts in helping students find the right college match. While it may feel impossible to manage, there are ways you can keep moving forward and manage the process.
Step 1: Take a deep breath, and know we are all in this together.
Colleges are reassuring students that while events are cancelled, and they are exploring online ways to connect, admissions decisions continue to be made as normal. Earlier this year, Princeton University reassured their students in a tweet: “Please note: The coronavirus outbreak and its effects have no impact on how we evaluate applicants to the University. Every application will receive our full consideration.”
Step 2: Turn to virtual visits
While you won’t be able to smell the food in the cafeteria as you walk past on your campus tour, virtual visits are an excellent plan B. Many colleges offer virtual tours on their websites, are hosting virtual open houses, and some offer virtual admitted student days with student panels. Futures Academy will host a Virtual College Fair on October 8 with more than 60 colleges and universities participating. Students will be able to register through the school’s website. Students can also check out Campus Reel, which offers over 15,000 real videos, tours, and experiences from 300+ college campuses.
Step 3: Get your testing in order
SAT and ACT have been front of mind for many high school students. Keeping student’s safety as a top concern, College Board and the ACT have made changes to upcoming exams. For updated information, visit their websites regularly. If you’ve already registered for the exam, check your email inbox for updates. Here’s the good news: you now have more time for SAT/ACT prep for your exams!
Step 4: Get a jump on your college essays
With ample time at home, now is the perfect time to start brainstorming what you’d like to write about for your application essays. What are you passionate about? What makes you uniquely you? What comes to mind that you want the admissions committees to know about you that they can’t learn from your extracurricular list? Start brainstorming and enlist a post-secondary counselor to help you get all your ideas together, organized, and rolling! In addition to help with essays, the College Readiness Counselors at Futures Academy can show you ways to best highlight your intellectual vitality, commitment to extracurricular and volunteer work, and your ability to succeed and contribute on a college campus. We offer both virtual teaching AND virtual counseling options. So instead of logging miles walking around college campuses, find ways to creatively log virtual miles exploring your post-secondary options. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if we can support you through this journey. We are always just a phone call (or Zoom call) away!
About Futures Academy
Founded in 1985, Futures Academy offers an alternative to the traditional classroom and helps students in grades 6-12 develop the knowledge, skills, mindsets, and habits needed to achieve personal goals. Futures Academy specializes in personalized instruction and college preparation in a supportive and socially engaging environment. Ninety-six percent of students who have applied to a four-year college or university have been accepted. With 16 California campuses, Futures Academy is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC). For more information visit www.Futures.edu. Follow Futures Academy on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram to see the school in action.
About our Guest Author:
Nicole Bozick is Fusion and Futures Academy’s Director of Counseling. In her role, Nicole is committed to serving our families in a powerful way with their post-secondary plans. Nicole earned a Bachelor's Degree in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing, a Bachelor's Degree in Media and Communication from Muhlenberg College, and a Certificate in College Counseling from UC San Diego.