Category Archives: College Readiness

Report: Social Class—Not Smarts—Is A Better Predictor of Academic Success

Inequities in opportunity begin far before college, according to a recent report.

In fact, the social class a child is born into is a better predictor than academic test scores when it comes to calculating future earning power, research from Georgetown University’s Center for Education and the Workforce shows.

Continue reading Report: Social Class—Not Smarts—Is A Better Predictor of Academic Success

Windows of Opportunity: The Fine Arts Advantage

You may recall the story about a class of kindergartners who are asked to raise their hands if they are artists. All hands fly up amid peals of delight. Then, a class of ninth graders is asked the same question. Few or no hands appear. What happened to still those creative hands? Unfortunately, as they grow older students are often led to believe that delving deeply into the fine arts will result in an unreliable and unprofitable future. Students are steered to more “practical” endeavors like science, engineering, or business—as if knowledge were deposited like grain into sealed silos.

As college counselors, let us ventilate those silos with windows of opportunity. Each fine artist is imbued with imagination, curiosity, and creativity, and through these windows light pours into every corner of the mind. Albert Einstein declared: “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” Einstein is in the good company of Leonardo da Vinci, who, had he been practical and followed his father’s profession, would have become a clerk. Imagine the loss, not only to art.

Continue reading Windows of Opportunity: The Fine Arts Advantage

Michelle Obama Speaks to Students at 5th Annual Beating the Odds Summit

Reach Higher hosted the fifth annual Beating the Odds Summit Tuesday to support first-generation college-bound students.

“No matter how much you may front, there is a part of you that is wondering whether this was a mistake and whether I belong and whether I can do this. Can I go on this campus or start this program? Am I really worthy of it? Those were the messages I had going on in my head and they still come up in life,” former First Lady Michelle said.

“…But here’s my one big message. This is not a mistake. You are here because you are more than capable of doing it.”

Continue reading Michelle Obama Speaks to Students at 5th Annual Beating the Odds Summit

Imagine Grant Pairs Up Graduate Students and School Counselors for College Readiness Event

Courtesy of Julie Cerrito

School counselors face large caseloads and an ever-growing list of demands as they work to serve the social, emotional, and academic needs of their students. But could a small part of this workload be shared by counseling graduate students?

This is the idea behind Postsecondary Readiness Night, a program that pairs the school counseling program at the University of Scranton (PA) with local school districts in Pennsylvania.

The most recent event, funded by a NACAC Imagine Fund grant, was geared toward high school juniors, seniors, and their parents and offered stations focused on topics such as financial aid and college visits.

Continue reading Imagine Grant Pairs Up Graduate Students and School Counselors for College Readiness Event

School Districts to Offer ‘Graduation Guides’ to Keep Students on Track

iStock

DC public schools (DCPS) are hoping to get and keep high school students on track to graduate and head off to college with their new “Guide to Graduation, College, and Career.”

Personalized for each student, all high school students in DCPS will receive a PDF document twice a year that will track their progress to graduation and offer college and career options, NPR reported. The guides will be mailed and available online.

Continue reading School Districts to Offer ‘Graduation Guides’ to Keep Students on Track

#NACACreads: Author Tony Jack to Discuss ‘The Privileged Poor’

Everyone wants to hear what Tony Jack has to say.

In the past three months, the Harvard sociologist has been featured on NPR, CNN, PBS, and other media outlets talking about disadvantaged students, college access, and the admission process.

And this September, he’ll be chatting with NACAC members.

Jack, author of The Privileged Poor, has agreed to join us for a #NACACreads discussion focused on his book. The conversation—which will also provide opportunities for admission professionals to share their insights about the experiences of disadvantaged students—will kick off on Twitter at 9 p.m. ET on Sept. 17.

Continue reading #NACACreads: Author Tony Jack to Discuss ‘The Privileged Poor’

Dealing with Stress as a Teenager

Teenagers are stressed. And pressured. And anxious. And overwhelmed.

According to a recent study, 45 percent of teenagers in the US are stressed “all the time.” And though anxiety levels have risen in teens across all backgrounds, it has risen more among teens in affluent areas.

In an essay for Philly magazine, Tom McGrath explores the idea that “it’s the kids with the seemingly endless opportunities who are most anxious about their futures.”

Continue reading Dealing with Stress as a Teenager

The New ‘Senioritis’: Finding Your Motivation

The school year is almost over and motivation for many high school seniors is quite low.

Commonly known as “senioritis,” this is the time after college acceptances arrive and high school seniors start to feel like school isn’t important.

Senioritis often has a negative connotation. But past #NACACreads author Ned Johnson thinks the term and the feeling need a rebrand.

Continue reading The New ‘Senioritis’: Finding Your Motivation

Imagine Grant Supports College Admission Program for Non-Native English Speakers

Courtesy of Robbie Cupps

For non-native English speakers, figuring out the college admission process often has an additional layer of challenges.

Robbie Cupps, a college and career counselor at Capital High School (ID), works in the Boise School District, which has a significant population of Spanish-speaking students.

Working with these students, she knew she had to take a different approach and a grant from the NACAC Imagine Fund helped make it possible.

Continue reading Imagine Grant Supports College Admission Program for Non-Native English Speakers