Senior Group Guidance Recap
The college counselors went into English classes this week to talk to seniors about the next steps in the college process. The most important topic covered the midterm grades and how to request these grades to be sent to colleges. Students will fill out a purple request form in class during January Group Guidance.
Counselors also covered Financial Aid and the CSS Profile and scholarships as well as answered general questions regarding sorority transcripts, committing to a school by May 1 and of course the continued importance of the second semester. If you have any questions, please discuss this with your daughter or contact her counselor. To check out our presentation, visit our Counseling website
. College Panel for Juniors and Seniors: January 7, 2014
Reminder! On January 7, juniors and seniors will have the opportunity to meet with recent alumnae to hear about their transition to college and their experiences. During fourth period, all juniors will hear from a group of seniors who will answer questions specifically related to the college process. During fifth and sixth periods, juniors and seniors can sign up for two of the four sessions (Highly Selective Colleges and Universities, Public In State Colleges and Universities, Public Out of State Colleges and Universities, and Private Colleges and Universities). Students have until December 7th to register for a session. Otherwise, your daughter will be assigned a session. In addition to listening to our panelists, students can select questions they would like the panelists to answer or submit questions to be asked. Information regarding this year's college panel can be found on the Counseling website
. A Note About Independent College Counselors
Some St. Agnes families wonder if they should hire the services of an independent counselor. While we understand the external pressures of the college search process and are sympathetic to special needs that may arise for students, we believe that most St. Agnes students do not need such services. The professional experiences and training of the St. Agnes college counseling staff, combined with the support of the administration and faculty, ensure that our students are receiving personal, personalized, abundant, and accurate guidance tailored to the individual student throughout the college search process.
The St. Agnes college counselor is the person who will write the recommendations that admission officers will read, not the independent counselor. Most colleges in this country will not accept recommendations from independent counselors and will not respond to phone calls or emails from an independent counselor about the candidate, a fact that has been underscored numerous times in our recent conversations with college admission officers and we knew to be the case when we were in college admissions. Time spent with an independent counselor is time the student doesn’t have to meet with her St. Agnes counselor, meaning less time for us to get to know your daughter well and for her to cultivate her relationship with us. It is also time your daughter doesn’t have to study and earn good grades, or to participate in an activity she loves, or to spend more time with the family.
Parents might ask if their daughter would have that added “push” that might “make the difference” if she were to work with an independent counselor. The answer is, in short, “No.” College admission offices can spot the highly polished, calculated hand of the coached application in a heartbeat, and when they do, any hoped-for “advantage” has been lost. The application that might otherwise have been a compelling one if written by the student herself can be relegated very quickly to the “waitlist” or even the “deny” pile. It is a fact that college admission offices see little benefit to, and indeed see more negatives associated with, working with an independent college counselor.
Colleges are looking for the student’s authentic voice. They want to know, in the student’s own words, what she cares about, what motivates her, what she thinks and believes, how she will engage on the campus, and so on. Overly coached applications obliterate the student’s voice, leaving the application reader wondering who wrote the essays, who filled out the application, why/if this student is actually interested in their college and would enroll if admitted. It is never to an applicant’s advantage to remove that voice, nor is it right to bring into question how an applicant was admitted to a given college: through her own voice and accomplishments or through the finesse of an outside advisor. Do not take away your daughter’s success achieved through her own efforts.Newsletter to Sophomores
Communication is key!
Sophomore parents might be interested in taking a look at a publication that was sent to their daughters last week from the Guidance Office. Sophomore Paw Prints
is a once a semester email newsletter focused specifically on the sophomore level student. Topics like stress, college, and information about upcoming programs are included. If you would like to see the first issue, visit the Counseling website
ACT and SAT Accommodations
Juniors who are receiving classroom accommodations at St. Agnes based on a current diagnosis, may be eligible to receive accommodations for the Spring SAT and/or ACT. College Board (SAT) requires an educational evaluation conducted within the past 5 years and ACT requires an evaluation within the past 3 years.
Both require testing which includes aptitude and achievement testing, a diagnosis, and specific recommendations for accommodations, such as extended time. They both also require the implementation and use of accommodations in the school setting. It is important to remember that even if a student receives extended time at school, it does not necessarily mean that the student will be granted extended time on these standardized tests. The governing board of each testing institution makes the decision independent of the school, based on their interpretation of the documentation presented.
For more information, or to request the application (ACT) or consent form (SAT), please contact Lisa Crank in the Academic Services Center.Ninth Grade Parents
: Freshman Newsletter
The second freshman newsletter, Tiger Times
, was sent out this week to your ninth graders. You can access the newsletter through our counseling link on the SAA website
under “News from the Counselors.” Consider checking out the 2nd page of the newsletter that takes you to an article called “To My 15 year old self: Things I wished I known”. There are neat little quotes from international leading women about what they would advise their fifteen year old selves.
As counselors, we enjoyed reading these because many of the quotes promote the fifteen year old self to trust herself, which oftentimes we have seen them struggle with this. Don’t’ be afraid to read the link with them!