It’s the end of 8th grade and life is good! You have great friends, great grades, and you like the high school you’ve chosen. Everything is going well, but now is NOT the time to relax! In fact, it’s the perfect time to get a jump-start on becoming the best student and future college applicant that you can be. Parents, students, schools and college counselors will all ultimately be working together to ensure the best college options for the student, but here’s the secret: 9th grade is all about taking initiative.
The infographic below shows the roles of the student, parent, school, and college counselor throughout the 9th grade year. Before 9th grade even starts, there are some steps both parents and students should take. Parents should make sure their student is enrolled in as many challenging classes as appropriate- confirm AP and Honors enrollment with the school. Students should make a plan to be organized, have their textbooks ready, and get a tutor so they are prepared.
Once 9th grade starts, parents should help their student keep track of his or her activities and awards with a resume template, and students should take the initiative to sign up for whatever sports, activities, and clubs interest them.
In January and February, the parents can help by looking into summer opportunities for their student. The student should be applying for those opportunities. Also at this time, the school should be sending out the course curriculum for the student.
In the spring, parents can appeal for more honors or AP classes if their child is up for the challenge, and the student can look into scholarship opportunities for freshmen. Then, in the summer, the student should be sure to participate in valuable experiences such as service, internships, work, or travel.
Do you see a pattern here? The graphic clearly shows one important thing: the student should be the one taking most of the action during his or her freshmen year! There is not much that the school or counselors are doing at this point, so it is up to you. Seek out the opportunities you are passionate about so that you can be the best you can be! Take the initiative and the future is yours!
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