REGISTER FOR THE JANUARY
REGISTER FOR THE ACT
ASSESSMENT - January 13 is the registration deadline for the February 11 ACT. The best way to register is online: http://www.actstudent.org/ A few mail-in
registration packets are available in the
FEE WAIVERS FOR
-The College Board and The ACT both offer waivers for students for whom the payment of fees for the tests presents a serious barrier to college entrance. Eligibility is determined primarily by membership in a family whose annual income falls within low income predetermined guidelines or for those whose family receives public assistance, live in subsidized housing or meet eligibility requirements for free or reduced school lunches.. Students should see Mrs. Moore for the Fee Waiver Eligibility Form and registration instructions. Students using a fee waiver must register online for the
MOCK ACT TEST at BLAKE - January 23, 2012, 7:25-11:30 - Sophomores and Juniors will want to take advantage of this FREE practice ACT to determine if this is a better assessment for them compared to the SAT. StudyWorks requires that students register online or by phone before January 17:http://www.studyworks.com/SchoolMockMaryland or 1-800-783-1728. Test results and score interpretation meeting is scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 23 at 7:00 pm in the Blake Amphitheatre.
STUDYWORKS OFFERS SAT & ACT PREP CLASSES THIS SPRING - In preparation for the March 10, 2012 SAT test, classes begin on January 28. To prepare for the April 14, 2012 ACT test, classes start on March 6. Both of these classes will be held at Blake HS at a cost of $349 per student. To register: http://www.studyworks.com/blakehs.
SAT Special Needs Testing Locations: 2011-12 - MCPS provides a central testing location in Bethesda for most students pre-approved for accommodations on the SAT. The student using the Walter Johnson H.S. special testing center will receive notification from the College Board that they are approved for "School Testing" and report to WJHS on the day of the test. Students requiring the use of a reader and/or writer will test at his/her home school and will receive approval for "Site Testing." For additional information contact Sue Hartung at the Walter Johnson High School site (301-803-7140).
Information on requesting accommodations on College Board tests may be found on the College Board website's Services for Students with Disabilities page.
MONTGOMERY COLLEGE OFFERS SAT & ACT PREP CLASSES in preparation for Spring tests. SAT prep has been available in the past through MC, but the increasing popularity of the ACT has lead to the development of a course to prepare for that college admissions test, as well. ACT prep classes are available to students who plan to take the ACT test in December. Several courses are offered to prepare students for the October SAT beginning in late August and ending a week before the test date. The fee is $295 for MD residents (not including the textbook).
If you are a student who needs only SAT Math prep, there's a class just for you! A separate course is available for students who need only the SAT critical reading and writing prep! Cost: $205
Please get online now to learn more about these prep course offerings and to register: http://www.montgomerycollege.edu/wdce/brochures/sat_prep.pdfwww.montgomerycollege.edu/wdce.
SAT PREP COURSE at UMCP - This is a six-week LIFT SAT Preparation course which provides students with the knowledge and strategies necessary for success on the SAT. The course is offered on Saturdays, 9:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m. Small class sizes of 7 to 15 students for a cost of $275 for 6 weeks! For more information and to register online: http://www.precollege.umd.edu/liftsatprep.html. Future LIFT classes will be offered on these dates:
January 28 - March 3, 2012
April 14 - May 19, 2012
Students should take advantage of the FREE SAT and ACT online prep offered by MCPS. To access this resource, visit the MCPS homepage, www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org, and click on the “for students” tab. The link for this test prep is in the top left hand corner. Directions for how to access the sites are clearly stated. Click on "James Hubert Blake H.S." and enter your six-digit student I.D. as both your username & password. Choose the test for which you wish to prepare. Students can pace themselves through the online course, but should set goals for themselves such as 1-2 hours per week for SAT/ACT Prep.
For the self-motivated student, here are some free SAT or ACT practice sites:
For the self-motivated student, here are some free SAT or ACT practice sites:
SAT OPTIONAL SCHOOLS - There is a list of colleges that do not use SAT or ACT scores for admitting substantial numbers of students into their bachelor degree programs. Some schools exempt students who meet a certain grade point average, while others use SAT or ACT scores only for placement purposes. Please check with the college's admissions office to learn more about each individual college's requirements. The National Center for Fair & Open Testing publishes a list at: http://www.fairtest.org/.
COLLEGE CAMPUS VISITS --> GO AMTRAK! - Buy one, Get one free! JUNIORS & SENIORS start making travel plans. Tickets must be booked 7 days in advance. You may access the AMTRAK website for details on how to access this discount: www.campusvisit.com/amtrak. Fill out a short form; hit Submit for special Amtrak promotion code; then book your ticket online or by phone with Amtrak using this special code. Pick up your tickets and travel in comfort to college campuses.
LOOKING FOR SCHOLARSHIPS? - Many local scholarship opportunities are posted on the Career Center webpage and links to the application form & eligibility criteria are included when offered: http:www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/schools/blakehs/, click on "Students" and then on "Career Center." Some scholarship forms are not available online, but can be found in the Career Center files. See Mrs. Moore for assistance.
MINORITY SCHOLARSHIP INFORMATION - A list of scholarships that target minority students has been posted on the Blake H.S. webpage for your convenience. They are listed in chonological order along with contact information. To view the document online, go to: http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/schools/blakehs/ and click on "Students," "Career Center." Look on the left side of the Career Center page for "Scholarships for Minority Students." http://www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/curriculum/careercenter/minorityscholarships.shtm.
BLAKE COLLEGE ADMISSION PROCEDURES - The "Life After High School -- Collegebound" packet that seniors are given when they meet with their counselor to discuss post-secondary plans is now online. It includes: How to Process College Applications & Transcript Requests, Sample Resume, Student Reflections Form, Parent Reflections Form, Request for Teacher Recommendation Letter and websites for Exploring College/Career Goals. Go to: www.montgomeryschoolsmd.org/schools/blakehs/ Click on "Students," and then on "Career Center." Choose: "College Admissions Process."
UPCOMING COLLEGE FAIRS are posted on the Career Center webpage under the "College/Career Fairs" link and below.
USA "Gap Year" Fair - January 21, 2012 in Washington DC. Sponsored by Dynamy Internship Year & Youth Academy. Location: Sidwell Friends School, 3825 Wisconsin Avenue NW, Washington, DC, 12:00-3:30. Also offered on January 19, 2012 from 6:00-8:30 pm at Thomas Wootton H.S., 2100 Wootton Parkway, Rockville, MD 20850. For more information and to check complete schedule of gap year fairs, refer to website: www.usagapyearfairs.org; or email: email@example.com; or call: 508-755-2571.
Jesuit College Night in Maryland - TBA - March 2012, 7-9 pm - Learn about the tradition, diversity and the distinction of 18 of the nation's Jesuit colleges: Boston College (MA), College of the Holy Cross (MA), Fairfield University (CT), Georgetown University (DC), Gonzaga University (WA), John Carroll University (OH), LeMoyne College (NY), Loyola College (MD)), Loyola University Chicago (IL), Loyola University New Orleans(LA), St. Joseph's University (PA), St. Louis University (MO), St. Peter's College(NJ), Spring Hill College (AL), University of San Francisco (CA), University of Scranton (PA), Wheeling Jesuit College (WV) and Xavier University (OH). Location: Georgetown Prep School, Hanley Athletic Center, 10900 Rockville Pike, Rockville, MD. For more info: 410-617-5012
COLLEGES THAT CHANGE LIVES FAIR - Sunday, May 20, 2012 - These fairs are offered all over the U.S. Featured are the 40 colleges that Loren Pope wrote about in his exceptional resource book, Colleges That Change Lives. All 40 will be represented in Bethesda, MD for two sessions (first session: 11:00 a.m. and second session at 3:00 pm). Location: Marriott Bethesda North Hotel & Conference Center, Salons A-D, 5701 Marinelli Road, Bethesda 20852 (preregistration is not required). For a list of participating colleges, visit the website: www.ctcl.org.
NCAA INITIAL-ELIGIBILITY CLEARINGHOUSE ONLINE
Students who plan to participate in intercollegiate athletics at an NCAA Division I or II school are encouraged to register online.
DID YOU MISS THE BLAKE FINANCIAL AID WORKSHOP? If you missed the Blake Financial Aid Workshop, here's an opportunity to get hands-on help with the FAFSA on February 12, 2012 from 2-4 pm (snow date: Feb. 19) at the Montgomery College Takoma Park campus in Silver Spring. COLLEGE GOAL SUNDAY is an annual event where financial aid volunteers from area colleges volunteer their time to individually help families complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid. Bring your 2010 or 2011 tax returns or W-2 forms, proof of residency (alien registration number) and your FAFSA PIN for assistance. English & Spanish-speaking advisors are available to work with you!
ROBERTSON SCHOLARS PROGRAM at DUKE & UNC CHAPEL HILL - Deadline: December 1, 2011 - Are you an extraordinary H.S. leader with outstanding academic potential and character? Students who demonstrate their ability to use their leadership skills towards making an impact in their community and world should consider applying for this program. Robertson Scholars awards approximately 36 full scholarships per year -- 18 to Duke and 18 to UNC Chapel Hill, support for research, study abroad & a laptop computer for each scholar. To learn more: www.robertsonscholars.org. Interested seniors must complete both the college admissions application form, as well as the scholars program application.
THOMAS EDISON HIGH SCHOOL OPEN HOUSE - Thursday, December 2, 2011, 5-8 pm - Come learn about the career development programs available to MCPS high school students. Programs include: construction, automotive technology, human services and computer-based fields. See live demonstrations and meet the staff. These programs offer professional certifications and licenses, and all are articulated with colleges & universities for college credit. For more information contact: Karen_v_wilson@mcpsmd.org or visit the website: http://www.mcpsmd.org/schools/edison.
MARYLAND PUBLIC TELEVISION FINANCIAL AID HELP - “You Can Afford College” will be aired on Maryland Public Television on December 14 at 8 pm, December 15 at 12 midnight & 4 am and January 28 at 2 pm. This is a live call-in show that will focus on financial aid and how to afford college. Learn about the FAFSA, grants, loans, scholarships & work-study as well as important application deadlines. For more information refer to this link: http://www.mpt.org/ycac.
MONTGOMERY COLLEGE presents KIDS COLLEGE - for all students in grades K-12 - Enrichment classes begin in January 2012. You may visit the website: www.montgomerycollege.edu/youth or call 240-567-7917 or 7264. Courses are offered after school and on Saturdays on the Rockville & Germantown campuses of MC.
GATES MILLENIUM SCHOLARS (GMS) PROGRAM - deadline for applications January 11, 2012 - If you are a minority in the senior class with significant financial need (Pell grant eligible) who will be a full-time freshman in college next Fall, please consider applying for the Gates Millenium Scholars program online: www.gmsp.org. Here are the requirements:
- African, American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian Pacific Islander or Hispanic ethnicity
- U.S. citizen or permanent resident
- minimum cumulative H.S. GPA 3.3 or have earned a GED
- demonstrated leadership abilities through participation in community service & extracurricular activities
- meet Federal Pell Grant eligibility criteria (determined by Fafsa4caster: www.fafsa4caster.ed.gov)
This renewable, need-based scholarship provides financial support throughout the student’s undergraduate career and into graduate school for those who choose to study in one of these seven disciplines: computer science, education, engineering, library science, math, public health or science. GMS scholars are mentored throughout college to assure them every opportunity to attain their degree.
Nominator should be an educator (principal, teacher or counselor) writing about the student’s academic record. Recommender should be a person writing about the student’s community service and leadership activities. If you qualify for this scholarship opportunity, please select a nominator and recommender and ask that they begin their portion of the application well before the deadline.
APPRENTICESHIP OPPORTUNITY - Applications will be accepted in person for Steamfitters' Apprenticeship Heating, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration Process Piping & Environmental Systems field in January 2012 dates, times & locations are as follows: Jan 4, 8:00-noon at Maryland location, Jan 5, 8:00-noon at Maryland location, Jan 6, 8:00-noon at Maryland location, Jan 11, 8:00-noon at Virginia location, Jan 12, 8:00-noon at Virginia Location and Jan 13, 8:00-noon at Virginia location. Address for Maryland location: UA Mechanical Trades School, 8509 Ardwick Ardmore Rd, Landover, MD 20785, 301-341-1555. Virginia location: UAM Steamfitters Local Union 602, 7552 Accotink Park Rd, Springfield, VA 22150, 703-569-0602. Requirements: Min age 18 by 8/15/2012; H.S. diploma by 6/30/2012 or GED by 12/31/2011. $50 application fee due at time of application.
BANK OF AMERICA - STUDENT LEADERS PROGRAM is seeking H.S. juniors or seniors strong in leadership who have demonstrated interest in tackling the crucial issues facing communities today. This is a paid eight-week internship for the summer of 2012 with a non-profit organization that addresses the concerns in your community. Gain hands-on learning & valuable insights into how community organizations work. Online applications may be submitted at www.bankofamerica.com/neistudentleaders . The application deadline is January 25, 2012. Questions: 202-442-3925 or firstname.lastname@example.org
MACKLIN BUSINESS INSTITUTE at Montgomery College -- Application deadline: January 20, 2012
The Macklin Business Institute at Montgomery College is excited to offer an exciting opportunity for your current seniors graduating in 2012. The application deadline for fall 2012 admission is January 20, 2012. The MBI application is available for download at www.mackin.org.
This celebrated honors business program has been acknowledged in publications such as the National Chronicle for Higher Education and the New York Times, and the program has been successful in transferring almost 100% of its students to four year colleges.
Here are some highlights of the Macklin program:
Please contact Steve Lang, Director, at 240-567-1707 or Stephen.lang@MontgomeryCollege.edu if you or your students have any questions about the program.
MONTGOMERY COLLEGE SCHOLARS - HONORS PROGRAM - full tuition & fees for two years! The DEADLINE for Montgomery College Scholars is January 20, 2012.
- average SAT range is around 550 to 650 on each of the 3 sections. If a student has below 550 on any section, he/she needs to take the MC Accuplacer placement test also, and it must be arranged by February 15, 2010 (Contact: Maria Davidson @ Maria.Adams@montgomerycollege.edu). The ACT score should be 24 or better. TOEFL score is considered but student must have an ACT or SAT score also. Applications for this very selective program are in the Career Center and require recommendations, essays & resume. Apply NOW! Twenty-five students are selected from Montgomery County for this two-year full tuition scholarship to MC, which includes a semester study abroad in Cambridge (pending funding). Students who apply to MC Scholars and are not selected for the scholars program are placed in a pool for the MC Academic Specialty Scholarship (a one year full-tuition scholarship to attend MC which may be renewable for a second year). Apply online: http://www.montgomerycollege.edu/admissions/MCScholars/.
HOLY CROSS HOSPITAL SCHOOL OF RADIOLOGIC TECHNOLOGY is currently accepting applications their 22-month program that devotes full time to the study of radiological science. Class starts in July 2012. Application deadline: February 1, 2012. Application fee: $30. A health occupations aptitude test is required this fall and class selection will take place in May. For more information: Stacie Maier, Program Director, 301-754-7889 or email@example.com. For additional information, please refer to website: www.holycrosshealth.org, click on "career opportunities" and then link to the Radiology School.
MONTGOMERY COUNTY YOUNG PROFESSIONALS CONFERENCE - Registration Deadline: February 17, 2012 - Eleventh Annual Montgomery County Young Professionals Conference, Challenge Yourself to Achieve, will take place on Thursday, March 22 from 8:00-1:00 at the Universities at Shady Grove in Rockville. The conference will include more than 900 MCPS H.S. juniors, business leaders and secondary/post-secondary educators to provide a real-world experience for students, including more than 30 interactive business-led breakout sessions and networking opportunities. Please obtain flyer from the Career Center or refer to website: http://mcbre.org/programs-students-conferences.shtml. Eight $500 college scholarships will be awarded at the conference. Apply online. Cost: $10, includes lunch.
YOUNG SCHOLARS PROGRAM @ UNIVERSITY OF MARYLAND COLLEGE PARK - July 8-27, 2012 - Applications accepted beginning February 15, 2012. Enrollment is competitive and contingent upon space availability. This summer program is for high school students who are looking for a pre-college experience at UMCP. Three weeks of of creative problem solving with equally talented peers from across the U.S. Visit the website for complete information: http://www.ysp.umd.edu/br or call 301-405-7762 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
HOWARD P. RAWLINGS GUARANTEED ACCESS GRANT - Deadline: March 1, 2012 - Seniors who have significant financial need should apply for this Maryland grant that may cover up to $15,500 of full-time college tuition. Income limits are posted on the MHEC website under the Howard P. Rawlings GA Grant: www.mhec.state.md.us/financialaid/. Student must enroll in a 2 or 4 yr college in Maryland, minimum cumulative high school GPA requirement is 2.5 and a completed FAFSA form (www.fafsa.ed.gov) in addition to the Guaranteed Access Grant application must be submitted by March 1, 2012 .
DELEGATE & SENATORIAL LEGISLATIVE SCHOLARSHIPS - Deadlines vary (usually March 1st) - Contact senator or delegate directly, as scholarship criteria and award amounts vary. If you do not know your senator or delegate, refer to www.mlis.state.md.us or call 1-800-492-7122 to find out your legislative district. H. S. seniors who plan to enroll in a 2 or 4 yr college or private career school in Maryland (or a member of the Academic Common Market) may apply. Student/parent must complete the FAFSA by 3/1/2012 and contact their state senator or delegate for the application and eligibility criteria. Financial need is often considered for these grants.
MONTGOMERY COLLEGE offers ACCUPLACER TEST at BLAKE HS – Friday, March 2, 2012, 7:30 – 10:00 am (MCPS half day) Seniors who wish to apply to MC should pick up an application from the Career Center and submit it to Mrs. Moore for a $25 application fee waiver prior to Feb. 15, 2012. These pre-registered students will be scheduled to take the MC placement test (Accuplacer) on March 2 in one of the Blake computer labs (TBA). If a student has already mailed their MC application to the admissions office, they will not be able to take advantage of the fee waiver, but can register to take the Accuplacer at Blake. See Mrs. Moore to sign up for the test (only 60 seats are available).
AMERICAN LEGION BOYS STATE PROGRAM - June 17-23, 2012, Washington College, Chestertown, MD - The American Legion is sponsoring their annual summer residential program for current H.S. junior boys, called Boys State. This free program emphasizes the necessity of participation as a citizen in the government process to insure continuing freedoms and rights. It is a week of learning & group participation where students are required to work as a team under close supervision. The experiences gained at Boys State stays with the student his whole life. Please see Mrs. Moore for a complete itinerary and the paperwork needed to apply for Boys State. Boys who are selected to attend this program may apply for the Samsung Scholarship grant of $1,000. Proof of military eligibility by parent, grandparent, great grandparent or legally adopted parent who served during a perioc of war is required only for the Samsung Scholarship. Remember that activities such as this look great on your college resume! Deadline for applications: May 1, 2012
SCHOLARSHIP SCAMS -- be on the lookout! Have you received a telephone call or letter offering assistance in finding scholarship money? Often it involves a "free" meeting with a financial aid consultant. BEWARE! Many times these services cost between $500-$1,000 for scholarship searches that you can do on line yourself for free. Here are some traps to avoid: "You've been selected" by a 'national foundation' to receive a scholarship..." or "You're a finalist" in a contest you never entered. "The Scholarship will cost some money." "We'll do all the work." "I just need your credit card or bank account number to hold this scholarship." "You can't get this information anywhere else." "The scholarship is guaranteed or your money back." REMEMBER: no one can guarantee you a scholarship! Students must apply for scholarships themselves. No one else can enter competitions or write essays for you. Never give out your credit card or bank account information unless you have initiated the contact. For more info. or to report a scam, contact the FTC at 1-877-FTC-HELP or http://www.ftc.gov/.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT FIT - Many magazine and newspaper articles broadcast the increasing selectivity of college admissions and this leads students to believe that "most selective" means "best." There is no such thing as a "one size fits all" college -- what is right for one student may not be right for another student with similar characteristics. A student's success in life is not determined by the college they attended. Do not select a school based on reputation, but instead on how well it fits your requirements. Studies have shown that students who have been accepted at one of the most prestigious institutions but choose to attend a lesser known school attain the same financial success as those who chose the more selective college. It is the student's attributes like drive, intelligence, work ethic and leadership qualities that will lead to a successful career. That being said, be aware of the college characteristics most important to you. Try looking beyond the reputation and amenities (beautiful campus and buildings) and focus on the students, professors, opportunities and course offerings. Choose colleges that support the way you learn best and where the institutional philosophy is in line with goals for your own education.
WHY CONSIDER LIBERAL ARTS COLLEGES? Liberal arts colleges are small and focus on the undergraduate. They provide students with a broad based knowledge in science, the humanities and art. Students are actively engaged in the learning process and critical & analytical thinking and writing skills are stressed. Classes in liberal arts colleges are taught by faculty (not graduate assistants) and professors interact with students in and out of the classroom. The experience of students at a liberal arts college differs from that of students at large public institutions. There is an emphasis on individualized instruction in a primarily residential environment. A 1998 study found that although only 3% of all American college graduates were educated at residential liberal arts colleges, they accounted for 19% of the U.S. presidents, 23% of Pulitzer Prize winners in drama, and 8% of Forbes magazine's listing of the wealthiest CEO's in America. Graduates from liberal arts colleges are twice as likely to earn a doctorate degree in science and are disproportionately represented among leaders in education, public service and business.
MARYLAND STATE POLICE CADET PROGRAM - The Cadet Program is an opportunity for responsible young men and women to work for the Commercial Vehicle Enforcement Division. They make a competitive salary while gaining knowledge of the MD State Police way of life and are on track to becoming a State Trooper at the age of 20.5 yrs old. Qualifications include: Age 17-19, U.S. citizen, valid driver's license, H.S. diploma or GED, excellent moral character, clean drug and criminal history. Application process takes an average of 4-5 months of testing and background investigation. Apply before H.S. graduation, before 18th birthday and attend an Applicant Orientation: www.mdsp.org.
GOVERNMENT SUMMER JOBS - Apply Early! Applying for summer positions within the government is now done online. Visit http://www.studentjobs.gov/ & http://www.usajobs.opm.gov/ to see job listings and apply. A "resume builder" is built into the program to store your resume for application purposes. Some clerical positions/internships with the Dept. of Health & Human Services are listed on : www.hhs.gov/jobs/. These positions are competitive so start completing the paperwork early. Some student employment/intern programs exist within NIH (paid/unpaid): http://www.nih.gov/.
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