West Sound Academy has an impressive record of graduates being admitted to their first choices for higher education. By developing a partnership with students, parents, teachers, and advisors, the college counselor helps guide students through the process of narrowing their lists of schools, completing their applications, and finalizing their personal essays and college supplements. Representatives from colleges around the country come to West Sound to meet with Upper School students. Students are encouraged to look beyond rankings and name-recognition to find more meaningful measures of college fit. Understanding that no two students are alike, the college counselor works with each student to find the school that best matches his or her abilities, interests, and aspirations. The success of our graduates attests to the strength of the West Sound Academy college counseling program.

College Planning Timeline

 

Grade 8

 
Résumé Planning
Start thinking about activities you will want to pursue during high school
 
PSAT 8/9
Just get used to the feel of taking a long standardized test.

 

Grade 9

 
Building résumés with extracurricular and service opportunities
Finding a good way to keep track of academic and extracurricular awards and service accomplishments will make it easier to fill out college applications.
 
PSAT 8/9
Determine any content areas that need extra attention and use personalized practice on Khan Academy.
 

Grade 10

 
Continue to build and narrow résumés
Work toward leadership positions in the activities that you like the best
 
Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) - October
Determine any content areas that need extra attention and use personalized practice on Khan Academy.
 
Practice ACT
Administered in the spring, it will provide another example of a college entrance exam.
 
Visit schools
Pay attention to positives and negatives to look for or avoid in schools.
 

Grade 11

 
Continue to build and narrow résumés
Work toward leadership positions in the activities that you like the best
 
Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) - October
Determine any content areas that need extra attention and use personalized practice on Khan Academy.
 
WSA SAT preparation course
This optional class is offered afterschool in April. It provides strategies and practice for the math and writing sections and includes a full-length practice exam session. It finishes in perfect time to take the May SAT.
 
Register for either the May or June SAT or ACT exam
Usually, the SAT is the first Saturday of the month while the ACT is the second. Register early to avoid late fees and ensure space at the testing center of your choice.
 

Grade 12

 
Finalize college list
Return from summer break with a final list of schools that you would be happy to attend. Pay attention to admissions statistics and ensure your list includes a few safety schools.
 
Keep track of deadlines
Make a calendar showing all deadlines and remember that any items from teachers (recommendations) or the school (transcripts) require at least two weeks to prepare.
 
Complete applications
Carefully proofread everything. Make sure that all additional items such as recommendations and transcripts are sent. Ideally this will be done before winter break so that you are not rushing to meet deadlines.
 
Scholarship search
Utilize resources on scholarships from the LibGuide and pay attention to announcements of local scholarships. As with applications, you will need to communicate needs for scholarships applications early.
 

College 101

 

For resources on choosing, applying to, and affording your 'best fit' college, go to:

 

College 101

 

CLOSED AUG 17