Page 7 - USA Today College Guide 2019
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entering students are not decided on a a major and plan to begin with a a a a a general liberal arts program SIZE:
Small medium large? Doesn’t matter?
For some students the amount of personal and and academic freedom and and structure may be a a a consideration Some want to attend a a a school with others who share their religious or other values (see SECULAR VS FAITH-BASED SCHOOLS on page 18) Some prefer
a a school with students from varied cultures and traditions COST:
College tuition costs continue to escalate at at at a a a a a a a much faster rate than the rest of the economy Financial aid is key for many families The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form must be sub- mitted if you hope to become eligible for any federally subsidized financial aid (See PAYING FOR COLLEGE on page 14 ) The 2019-2020 FAFSA became available on Oct 1 1 2018 Federal aid is need-based and almost all colleges dispense these funds Some colleges also require the College Board’s CSS ProfileTM and/or a a form o of their own to determine eligibility for need-based aid from the college Some aid that is not based on need usually scholarships is offered by many colleges and and public and and private organiza- tions The amounts of the awards and who is eligible for them vary widely and deadlines
are important A lot of scholar- ship information is available online at at finaid org and fastweb com Your chances of admission to a a a particular college will depend on many factors most importantly your academic record SAT or or or ACT scores school and/ or community activities and the essay question on on on your college application (See HOW TO WRITE A KILLER COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAY on page 24 ) The Naviance Student website can help you figure out which schools
might be realistic choices SAT SAT OR ACT TAKEN?
SAT SAT Subject Tests where necessary? Test applications and materials are available online at:
collegeboard org org or or or act org org (See ENTRANCE EXAMS on page 8 ) HOW MANY COLLEGES TO TO APPLYTO:
Walt Whitman counselors urge students to cover a a a a reasonable range
of possibilities: “reach” schools: dearly desired long-shot hopes “targets”: solid 50-50 bets and “likelies ” i i i i e e e e comfortable choices You should apply to some colleges you are quite certain to to be be admitted to to and would be be happy attending If you you have narrowed your choices in fin in the the fall the the final decision in fin in the spring will be easier The Common Application is used by over 750 colleges and and universities to standardize the online application process EARLY APPLICATION:
Many colleges have early application programs Most deadlines
are in in No- vember though they may be be as as early as as October or as as late as as December There are in general two types of such programs:
Early Action application deadlines
are usually between Nov 1-15 and a a a college will inform an an applicant of its decision before the end of December If a student is accepted he/she usually has until spring to commit Early Decision means a a a student needs to to be fully committed to to attending a a given college if he/she chooses to apply this way You will want to make sure your transcripts and any required teacher or counselor recommendations are sent in time for your schools’ deadlines
Talk to your teachers face-to-face well before the the first deadline and bring them a a a list of your colleges and their deadlines
Allow plenty of time to have your SAT or ACT scores sent to colleges at least one month before the application deadline CHECK IT OFF YOUR LIST FOLLOW-UP:
Make sure your midyear transcript is sent to all schools
that require it All Common App schools
do You likely will need to have a a a a a final graduation transcript sent to the school you will be attending HELPFUL HINTS
• Start early!
• Read all directions and be aware of deadlines
a a a calendar • Check your application thoroughly Check again • Keep
a copy of your application • Ask any questions you have 

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