As a high school student, the college search process can loom over your head for months because you don’t know where to start. A great place to begin is with your advisor or guidance counselor. They will have insider resources for you and will be able to give you accurate application advice since they will have access to your transcript.
Still bashful about approaching your advisor? Here are some questions to get you started!
Am I on track to graduate?
Your counselor will be able to look at your GPA (grade point average), the classes you have completed, and the ones you still need to take. They’ll be honest with you and outline what courses you still need to complete high school. Find this out sooner rather than later!
What electives or extra curricular activities do colleges appreciate the most?
High school guidance counselors look at college applications and requirements ALL. THE. TIME. They will definitely know what types of activities schools enjoy seeing outside of academic performance.
What is the difference between AP, IB, and Honors classes?
These courses are different, and you could end up graduating with some college credit already tucked away in your back pocket after taking some of them. If your school offers these specialty classes, find out from your counselor if they think it is worth it to take some to increase your chances at particular colleges or universities.
What schools are similar to my current choices?
If you go into your advisor’s office with a few options – schools you are considering or that appeal to you already – he or she should be able to find other schools that are similar. You’ll probably find out about schools you didn’t know existed and be able to give yourself more options come application time.
Are there past students who have gone to my school of choice?
See if your guidance counselor remembers students in the past couple of years who ended up attending the same schools you are considering. It is always very helpful to talk to a current student at your potential university – they will have the inside scoop on what campus life is like. Your counselor may be able to connect you to these students for advice or a visit!