Counselors offer many resources for clarifying paths to college

Knowing where to start on the journey after high school can be intimidating and confusing, but the counseling office seeks to clarify the steps. 

Counsellor Erin Gardner said the first thing is to go on college visits. “You’re going to spend your time and money there. You need to make sure you enjoy it.” 

She said it is also very helpful to visit different size colleges to see what environment fits best, and recommends that while setting up college visits, one should attempt to visit one two-year college, a four-year, public and private schools to see the differences between campuses. 

While on college visits, Gardner said it is important to ask questions to the staff there; and, of course, if the college fits, go about asking for the next step toward their application process. 

Signing up for FSA is an important step. FSA is financial aid, and college applicants need to create an ID. is a free site, so Gardner said to be careful when filling out the application. Be sure that the site has “.gov” because then it will be free while applying. Avoid FSA sites that charge for applying. 

The ACT test is not required for all colleges, but for some it does allow for more scholarship opportunities if taken and scored well. It is a $65 test, and students can talk to counsellors if unable to pay because they might be able to find help for that cost. 

Many colleges also visit the high school, along with the College Aid Access Network to help students and parents. The times they are posted on Schoology, and students should plan to get a pass to meet with visiting schools and ask questions. 

Scholarships are also found on the school counseling page. Go under college resources, click financial aid to find some available scholarships. Counselor Andrew Eismen is in charge of this site. Gardner said “I would start looking for scholarships during holiday break. That is usually when they start to come in.”

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