Higher education is more important and more competitive than ever. Students who want to get into the best colleges and universities need to start preparing in high school in order to have the best chances of getting accepted to and succeeding in their dream school. Here are four effective ways high school students can prepare for college now.
Advanced placement classes are high school courses taught at the college level. After the completion of an AP course, students have the opportunity to take a test that results in college credit if they pass. AP classes look great on a college application, and they can also make your tuition bill cheaper and allow you to graduate a semester or two early.
What better way to prepare for college than a college preparatory program? From summer and after-school programs to a full time College Prep High School, there is a college prep program to fit every student's needs, goals and schedule. College prep prepares students not just academically but also socially for the demands of higher education and campus life. These programs also provide assistance with applying for schools and securing financial aid.
Nothing looks better on a college application than extracurricular activities. An extracurricular activity is a sport, club or hobby that you participate in outside of class. In addition to bulking up your application, many of these activities also provide opportunities for scholarships. Scholarships for popular activities like basketball, football, band and cheerleading can be very competitive and difficult to get. However, less popular activities like newspaper or chess can be relatively easy to obtain for a talented student.
If your grades or standardized test scores are holding you back, tutoring may hold the answer to fulfilling your college goals. Consider getting a tutor for any subject in which you have a grade of C or lower. Tutors can also be helpful for learning valuable skills like foreign languages and musical instruments. Don't have the money for a private tutor? Ask your school if they provide any financial assistance for tutoring.
Although a college education is very important, remember that it's not the end of the world if you don't get into your dream school. There are many other great options like regional universities, community colleges and trade schools. Wherever you end up pursuing your higher education, good preparation is still vital for long-term success.