© 2002 by ACT, Inc. Keep Your Options Open MORE EDUCATION Can Equal MORE INCOME It’s natural at this age to change your mind often! Here are some general ways you can prepare for WHATEVER the future holds... Take the right courses. Take control—learn to be a good student. Use time outside of school wisely. Start thinking about the future. If college is a goal, learn about financial assistance programs. Get help when you need it. Take the RIGHT COURSES! 2/3 of 8th graders plan to finish college. But only 1/3 plan to take college prep courses in high school. Without college prep courses, YOU CANNOT ENTER COLLEGE. High School Courses ACT Recommends English 4 years Mathematics 3 years (algebra and above) Natural Science 3 years (with lab experience) Social Science 3 years Foreign Language 2 years (of the same language) Other—visual arts, music, theatre, drama, computer science, etc. Take control— Learn to be a Good Student Sit close to the front of the classroom. Join in class discussions. Ask questions. Keep up with class assignments. Ask for help when necessary. And... Look for ways to sharpen basic skills. Learn keyboarding. Learn to take good notes. Learn to correct/revise written work. Develop test-taking skills. Use Time Outside of School Wisely! Develop habits that will lead to success. Find a quiet place to study. Plan a daily homework schedule. Ask family or friends to read your written work. Also... Use the local library. Read newspapers and magazines. Look up unfamiliar words in a dictionary. Talk with family and friends about career plans. Start thinking about the FUTURE When thinking about college... Make a list of interesting schools and gather information about them. Register to take the ACT before December of your senior year. Visit campuses, apply for admission and financial assistance. Make a college decision. When considering serving in the Armed Forces... Visit with friends, neighbors, and relatives who have served. Study military literature and compare training opportunities. Arrange visits with recruiters. Compare benefits, tour of duty, training, etc. When considering employment right after high school... Explore any special abilities and interests. Study materials about resume writing. Visit with people working in interesting occupations. Become familiar with employers in the area. Learn about vocational/technical programs available in high school. If college is an option… Financial Financial help help will willbe be available available Try to save even a small amount each month. Work hard for good grades/test scores for scholarship consideration. Learn about the types and sources of financial assistance available. Attend financial aid programs when offered. Apply for financial assistance during the junior and senior years. GET HELP (and your questions answered) When You Need It There are many agencies, organizations, and individuals who care whether you are successful in school and in life. Use them! Always start with your SCHOOL COUNSELOR! Call This Toll Free Number: 1-800-USA-LEARN (1-800-872-5327) U.S. Department of Education Information Services Use the Internet www.actstudent.org www.finaid.org www.ed.gov/thinkcollege/early www.collegeispossible.org www.cityyear.org Remember! The choices you make now will affect the choices you will have for the rest of your life. Make High School COUNT!