FOUR-YEAR COLLEGE/CAREER PLANNING CALENDAR
- Take the Practice ACT. All 9th Grade Students will take a Practice ACT Test.
- Use Naviance-Student in the fall to start career exploration using “Cluster Finder” with your counselor. Naviance is an on-line post-secondary planning tool that both students and parents can access. Students begin to use this program freshmen year to do career planning, develop a four-year plan, research college institutions and majors, and develop their portfolio. To access Family Connection, use https://connection.naviance.com/fc/signin.php?hsid=pkwywest –OR- from the Parkway West Home Page: Click on “Departments” then ‘Counseling’ and then ‘Family Connection.’ If you can’t remember your log in information, choose ‘I’m a guest.’ The guest password is ‘longhorns.’
- Develop a Personal Four-Year Study Plan and course schedule in January with grade level counselor. Use career exploration results to match career clusters found in this course description book. These career clusters help students match elective classes at West to career/ college goals.
- Register for sophomore year courses in January and build upon your four-year plan. Use career exploration results to match career clusters found in
- Build a resume. We encourage students to get involved in extra-curricular activities and begin tracking these and any academic awards they receive in the form of a resume.
- Establish best grades possible. Remember that your cumulative grade point average (GPA) is calculated at the completion of first semester of freshmen year.
- Take the Practice ACT. All 10th Grade Students will take a Practice ACT Test.
- Take PSAT/NMSQT test in October (optional). Register in the school bookstore. Note that the exam serves as the qualifying assessment for the National Merit Scholarship Program when taken during junior year.
- Use Naviance-Student to continue career exploration using “Do What You Are.” Students continue to use this program sophomore year to do career planning, revise your Personal Four-Year Study Plan, research college majors, and continue developing your own portfolio.
- Register for junior year courses in January and build upon your Personal Four-Year Study Plan. Use career exploration results to match career clusters found in
- Earn best grades possible.
- Build your resume. Get involved! Try new clubs and take on leadership roles.
- Create a preliminary list of colleges/tech schools.
- Naviance-Student https://connection.naviance.com/fc/signin.php?hsid=pkwywest –OR- from the Parkway West Home Page: Click on “Departments” then ‘Counseling’ and then ‘Family Connection.’ If you can’t remember your log in information, choose ‘I’m a guest.’ The guest password is ‘longhorns.’
- Take advantage of this resource as you research and apply to schools.
- Meet with college reps that visit WEST.
- Financial Aid Night. The event typically takes place late September/early October at WEST and includes presentations on the highly selective admission process and financial aid.
- Attend college fairs and receptions whenever possible.
- Register for PSAT (optional).
- Maintain your grades! Keep working hard and keep taking challenging courses.
- Build Your Resume. Remember to get involved in extracurricular activities, community service, and leadership opportunities.
- Take the ACT at West in April (required). Spend time preparing for the exam and take advantage of practice tests!! In fact, you can access two free, full-length ACT exams through your Naviance Family Connection account!!
- ACT (actstudent.org) Some colleges require the writing section and others will accept it in place of SAT Subject Tests. It is in your best interest to take the ACT test with writing just to be safe!
- SAT Subject Tests. These tests are subject-specific.
- NCAA-Bound Athletes. Complete the online NCAA Eligibility Center registration.
- Visit campuses!
- Develop your senior schedule in January with your grade-level counselor. Colleges do consider the extent to which you have pursued courses that challenge you.
SUMMER BETWEEN JUNIOR-SENIOR YEARS
- Letters of Recommendation. If you have colleges requiring letters of recommendation, ask two to three teachers in your core academic areas for letters.
- Write Essays. If you have colleges requiring letters of recommendation, the summer is an opportune time to write them.
- College List. Finalize your college list with application deadlines.
- Retake ACT. If you are needing a higher ACT Score for the colleges you are applying to, look to retake the ACT over the summer or early senior year.
- Take the ACT again, if necessary.
- Finalize your college list.
- Teacher Recommendations. Make sure you allow your teachers plenty of time and provide them with your resume and deadlines as well!
- Counselor Recommendations. Please notify your counselor at least two weeks before your application is due in order to allow sufficient time to write the recommendation.
- Encourage your parents to attend the fall Financial Aid Night in September or October.
- Take the ACT, SAT, and SAT Subject Tests, if necessary.
- Attend the National College Fair at Saint Louis University and the Collaborative College Fair at Meramec in mid-October.
- Submit college applications for Early Decision admission and Early Action BEFORE the November 1 or the November 15 deadlines.
- Colleges will look carefully at your 7th semester grades!
- Financial Aid Night at WEST. Includes presentations on the highly selective admission process and financial aid.
- Register for your FAFSA (FREE Application for Federal Student Aid) PIN number. Your FAFSA information cannot be submitted until after January 1st, but you and your parent will need PIN numbers to complete the on-line form. (fafsa.ed.gov) The FAFSA becomes available January 1st. Submit the FAFSA and any additional financial aid forms requested by the colleges as soon as possible. The deadline for Missouri funded financial aid is April 1st.
- Research and apply for scholarships.
- Maintain strong second semester grades. Colleges have the right to withdraw an acceptance offer based on your final semester grades and YES, they do exercise this option!!
- Make your final choice and NOTIFY your school by May 1st. Send a deposit to your chosen school. Failure to do this may result in a revocation of your spot and/or financial aid package.
- Inform your counselor of your final decision so your official final transcript will be sent.