duPont Manual High School/
Youth Performing Arts School
An Overview of The College Application
Senior Class of 2013
Acknowledgement of Sources
Fiske Guide to Getting Into the Right College
Edward B. Fiske and Bruce G. Hammond
Published by Sourcebooks, Inc.
 The Truth About Getting In: If You’re Getting
Ready for the College Admissions Process,
Get the Facts
Katherine Cohen, Ph.D.
Published by Hyperion Books
 I Got In!
Mary Anna Dennard
Published by Mary Anna Austin Dennard, Inc.
College Preparatory Curriculum
JCPS Graduation Requirements
4 years of English (English 1,2,3,4)
4 years of Math (Algebra 1 & 2, Geometry, or more advanced)
3 years of Science (life, physical, earth/space, include at least
one laboratory class)
3 years of Social Studies (World Civilizations, US History, plus
one of economics, government, geography, civics, or survey of
social sciences)
.5 years of Health
.5 years of Physical Education (or 1 year of Fundamentals of
Dance) Dance Majors do not have to take PE
1 year of Humanities (or 4 years of specialization in the arts)
2-3 years of the same Foreign Language
21st Century Technology Proficiency, IC3 Certification, or
Computer Applications
4-5 credits of Electives (your YPAS classes are electives)
Graduation Requirements for Out
of State Colleges
Here are just a few states that have
different requirements from Kentucky
 Alabama Colleges – 4 years of Social
 Georgia Colleges – 4 years of Science
 Indiana & North Carolina – Require precalculus
 Texas – .5 credits of Speech and .5
credits of Economics
Additional JCPS Diploma
Students must meet the minimum
requirements of the Kentucky
Department of Education program of
studies which is 22 -23 credits
 Students must still complete a
 The ILP (Individual Learning Plan) must
be 100% complete EACH YEAR you
are in high school
Graduation Requirements for the
Advanced Program
For those students that have tested into the Advanced Program
– 12 credits must be earned in Advanced Program classes in at
least 3 of the following areas: English, Math, Science, Social
Studies, Foreign Language
Advanced Humanities is also required (or specialization)
Students are also required to take 3 years of the same Foreign
A Cumulative GPA of 3.0 is required to stay in the Advanced
The Advanced Program is unique to Jefferson County Public
Schools – most out of state colleges are unaware of this
program – Honors is the highest level at most high schools
across the nation other than Advanced Placement Courses.
Commonwealth Diploma
Please see your counselor if you are working toward the
Commonwealth Diploma
We must add your name to the list to order your Commonwealth
Diploma in addition to your Manual Diploma
Required Coursework for the Commonwealth Diploma Includes:
1 AP English credit
1 AP Math or AP Science Credit
1 AP Foreign Language Credit
1 Elective AP Credit
Students must take the AP Exams for these courses and pass at
least 3 with a score of 3 or higher
The Class of 2012 will be the last class to be able to earn a
Commonwealth Diploma. The program will end at the
conclusion of the 2011-2012 school year
NCAA Clearinghouse
16 Core Credits
 4 Years of English
 4 Years of Math – Algebra 1 or higher
 2 Years of Physical/Natural Science
 1 Year of Social Science
 1 Additional Math, English, or Natural/Physical
 4 Years of any of the above or Foreign Language
 Mrs. Marti Johnston is our NCAA Clearinghouse
Expert located in the Manual Counseling Suite
NCAA Clearinghouse – cont.
Make sure you have taken the ACT or
SAT and reported your scores to the
 Register online at
 The fee is $50.00
 Apply at the end of your junior year –
Mrs. Johnston will send your transcript
Academic Status Report
 Student’s
name, counselor, grade
 Magnet Program
 Required Credits
 Credits Earned
 Credits Needed
 Standardized Test Scores
What is a Transcript???
The transcript is the report sent to colleges that reflects every
semester of high school that you have completed
Courses you have taken and credits you have earned each
semester are on the transcript
The level of rigor of each class is included on the transcript (AP,
advanced, honors, etc.)
Your total cumulative weighted and un-weighted GPA is on the
Your attendance record is on the transcript
Grades, including all pluses and minuses, A’s, B’s, C’s, D’s, and
Your name, address, phone, birth date, and student ID numbers
are also on the transcript, as well as the name and address of
Manual High School
Transcript Review
Check to determine that all courses are reported
accurately (name, grade, credit)
 Make sure you have all required courses for
graduation or you are taking those courses your
senior year
 Look for Summer School, eSchool, and Ind. Study
 Write in any corrections and see your counselor
immediately for edits
 Notice the GPA – weighted and un-weighted
 Notice your attendance record
 Check for correct name, address, birth date, phone
number, etc.
Why College?
Amount of Education
High School – no diploma
High School Graduate
Some College
Associate’s Degree
Bachelor’s Degree
Master’s Degree
Doctoral Degree
Professional Degree
Unemployment Rate
2008 median earnings of people in Kentucky over age 25, both
sexes, with a full time job – U.S. Census Bureau
Top Occupations in the U.S.A.
Based on Growth Rate to 2014
Home Health Aides
Network Systems & Data
Communications Analysts
Medical Assistants
Physician Assistants
Computer Software
Physical Therapist Assistants
Dental Hygienists
Dental Assistants
Personal and Home Care Aides
Network and Computer Systems
Database Administrators
Physical Therapists
Forensic Science Technicians
Veterinary Technologists and
Diagnostic Medical Sonographers
Occupational Therapist Assistants
Medical Scientists
Occupational Therapists
Preschool Teachers
Cardiovascular Technologists and
Postsecondary Teachers
Computer Systems Analysts
Hazardous Materials Removal
Biomedical Engineers
Employment Recruitment and
Placement Specialists
Paralegals and Legal Assistants
College Admissions Criteria by
Academic Rigor, Talent,
and/or Mastery of Skills
Cumulative GPA
Grades in Advanced
Placement Courses
Grades in College Prep
Grades in All Subjects
ACT & SAT Test Scores
Class Rank (JCPS does
not rank)
Essay or Writing
Honors, Awards, etc.
Interviews (if required)
Community Service
Work and Extra
Curricular Activities
The ACT Test
The ACT consists of four
multiple choice tests in
English, Mathematics,
Reading, and Science
The English Test measures
standard written English and
Rhetorical Skills
The Math Test measures
mathematical skills students
have typically acquired in
courses taken up to the
beginning of Grade 12
The Reading Test measures
Reading Comprehension
The Science Test measures
the interpretation, analysis,
evaluation, reasoning, and
problem-solving skills
required in the Natural
The Optional Writing Test
measures writing skills
emphasized in high school
English classes and in entry
level composition courses
All together, the test predicts
college readiness in the
areas evaluated and sets
benchmark scores for
college success
ACT College Readiness Benchmark
A benchmark score is the minimum score needed on an ACT subject
area test to indicate a 50% chance of obtaining a B or higher, or, a 75%
chance of obtaining a C or higher in the corresponding credit bearing
college course
College English Composition
College Algebra
College Social Sciences
College Biology
Overall College Readiness
18 on ACT English Test
22 on ACT Math Test
21 on ACT Reading Test
24 on ACT Science Test
21 on ACT Composite
These are the minimum scores you need to indicate to the average
college you are ready for postsecondary work – More
competitive colleges will require higher benchmark scores
ACT vs. SAT – What’s the
Content based – core
curriculum knowledge
Includes science reasoning
Math includes trigonometry
No guessing penalty
Tests grammar
Scored on a scale of 1-36
1 composite score and 4
subject scores, plus 7
Tests critical thinking and
problem solving skills
Tests vocabulary much more
Not entirely multiple choice
Includes a guessing penalty
Does not test grammar
Scored on a scale of 200800 and has seven sections
– 3 math, 3 verbal, plus an
experimental section
ACT & SAT Test Dates 2012-13
ACT National Dates
 September 8, 2012
 October 27, 2012
 December 8, 2012
 February 9, 2013
 April 13, 2013
 June 8, 2013
SAT National Dates
 October 6, 2012
 November 3, 2012
 December 1, 2012
 January 26, 2013
 March 9, 2013
 May 4, 2013
 June 1, 2013
ACT/SAT Contact Information
To Register for the ACT or to send your
score reports to a college go to:
To register for the SAT or to send your
score reports to a college go to:
Manual’s School Code: 181525
Are You Ready to Apply?
Have you decided what your college major will be?
Are you happy with the lifestyle and eventual pay scale you will be
earning upon graduation?
Are you satisfied with your employability upon graduation?
Will you be happy doing this for the rest of your life?
Have you researched to find the schools that are strong in that area?
Have you found a Kentucky College you would happy attending?
Have you visited the college campuses, experienced the culture on
campus, satisfied with safety concerns, checked out the dormitory and
food services, explored the town or city, met with admissions
counselors, and talked with your prospective primary teacher?
Do you know the entry requirements, audition repertoire you will be
expected to perform, and have a good grasp of that material so it will
be prepared by audition day?
If you have answered yes to all of these questions – you are ready to
begin the college application process!!!
2012-2013 College Application
College Deadline
 October 1, 2012
 October 15, 2012
 November 1, 2012
 November 15, 2012
 December 1, 2012
 December 15, 2012
 January 1, 2013
 January 15, 2013
Due Date to Counselor
September 14, 2012
September 28, 2012
October 17, 2012
October 31, 2012
November 16, 2012
November 30, 2012
December 1, 2012
December 20, 2012
Facebook, MySpace, Email Address,
and College Applications
Consider that the information posted on these sites is
basically public domain.
 In as few as 10 minutes after you have posted
something on these sites they are archived forever in
over 20 locations throughout the world.
 Your personal sites can be viewed by college
admission counselors, college professors, employers,
stalkers, that creepy kid obsessing over you, as well
as campus and local police
 Make sure your email address is a professional or
generic name and not something that causes one to
pause and doubt your integrity or character
Time To Do Some Cleanup???
Remove photos showing you doing anything that
could be interpreted as inappropriate
Remove rude gestures, inappropriate comments,
questionable photos, etc.
Unsubscribe to questionable groups
Remove contact information
Choose attractive/professional looking photos to post
Un-tag any unflattering photos your friends may have
Perhaps let your grandmother approve of what you
have posted!!!
What Will Be Your First
The appearance of your college application is
very important:
If you are completing your application on-line, make
sure all the blanks are filled in and your application is
 If submitting a hard copy – type the application or
print VERY NEATLY in black ink.
 Make sure all the components of the application are
in the correct order
 If you are mailing the application – address the
envelope in a very professional way – typed address
labels are great
How Many Colleges Should I Apply
For most it will be a list of about six schools (more for theatre & musical
theatre majors because of the “type” factor)
Aim for one or more “reach” colleges that are highly desired and highly
selective. These “dream” schools will have about a 10% acceptance
rate. If you don’t, you’ll always wonder, “what if?”
It is wise to include one or two “fit” schools where the odds are 50/50
that you will be accepted based on your talent, GPA, and test scores
Include at least one or two “safety” colleges where admission is highly
likely and a college where you can afford to attend if you receive very
little financial aid
The easy part is finding your dream and reach schools
The hard part is finding your safety schools that are also a really good
match – keep an open mind about the many fine colleges that are not
intensely competitive in admission
Two safety schools are preferable to guarantee a choice between two
The potential for heartache in April can be drastically reduced by a few
good decisions in October and November
Most Common In-State Colleges By
Enrollment from duPont Manual
University of Louisville (679)
University of Kentucky (460)
Western Kentucky University (158)
Jefferson Community & Technical College (107)
Centre College (74)
Murray State University (58)
Northern Kentucky University (53)
Bellarmine University (48)
Eastern Kentucky University (36)
Transylvania University (23)
Georgetown College (16)
Morehead State University (16)
Kentucky State University (13)
Most Common Out-of-State Colleges By
Enrollment from duPont Manual
Indiana University Bloomington (32)
University of Cincinnati/CCM (27)
Washington University in St. Louis (22)
Vanderbilt University (21)
Indiana University Southeast (20)
Duke University (15)
The Ohio State University (14)
Boston University (12)
Maryland Institute, College of Art (12)
Purdue University – West Lafayette (12)
University of Chicago (12)
Columbia College Chicago (11)
The Academic Common Market
If the program you are interested in studying is not
offered at a college in Kentucky, you may be able to
pay in-state tuition at an out-of-state school through
the Academic Common Market
Alabama, Arkansas, Delaware, Georgia, Kentucky,
Louisiana, Maryland, Mississippi, Oklahoma, South
Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia
participate at the undergraduate levels
To use your KEES money for an out-of-state school
they must offer a major not offered in Kentucky,
be a member of the Academic Common Market,
and, be approved by the Kentucky Higher
Education Assistance Authority (KHEAA)
Call Megan Cummins at 502-696-7397 to be sure
Most College Applications Are
Completed Online
Students access the application through the
college website, usually under “admissions”
 Generally, a username and password will be
provided that will allow you to save your work
from multiple sessions
 The final copy is either transmitted through
the Web or printed and sent via snail mail –
be prepared to pay the application fee with a
credit card
Take Precautions!!!
Online applications can have a timed out feature –
save your work often so as not to loose all your hard
 Resist the temptation to impulsively hit the “send”
button until you have thoroughly proofread your
application – have at least one other person also
check for typos
 It is advised that you compose essays and short
answer questions offline and transfer them to your
application after you have refined those responses
 Review a printed copy of your work whenever
possible before sending and keep it for your records
Take Precautions!!! - continued
Electronic filers should receive an
acknowledgement via return mail
 Don’t forget you may need to print and mail a
signature page with a check for the
application fee
 Other parts of the application
(recommendation page, counselor page,
secondary school report, etc.) must be
printed and given to your teacher or guidance
 If you print your application, make sure you
sign it and enclose your check
The Old Fashioned Way
If you plan to stick with paper applications, make at
least two photocopies of the original
Practice on them and get all the typos and coffee or
pizza stains out of your system
A sloppy application is the quickest way to get a
rejection letter
Proofread for spelling, spacing, word choice, and
anything else you can think of
Type the final copy yourself – don’t worry about a
“few” neatly corrected errors, but avoid a sloppy
If you print instead of type (less professional looking),
make sure your penmanship is neat and easily
The Common Application
Available online at
 Approximately 300 schools, including the
most selective liberal arts colleges, accept the
Common Application
 You can either download the software or
transmit through the web
 Use the college’s own application form if they
have one – but many have adopted the
common application as their own
Cultivating Colleges
Many colleges are reluctant to accept an applicant unless they have
reason to believe that he/she is seriously interested.
 Many colleges track every contact the applicant initiates and are more
likely to accept students who have made multiple contacts
A few ways to communicate interest include:
 Visit the college – if you do not have a personal interview stop by the
admissions office and let them know you came
 If the college sends a rep to Manual or YPAS, go to their session and
communicate your interest
 Attend a college fair in your local area and speak to the representative
 Get a business card from any college representative you meet and
write or email that person to thank them and emphasize your interest
 Note in your application that a particular college is your first choice
school or one of your top choices
 Make sure your email address stays the same throughout the college
search process – if it changes tell the colleges
Listing Activities
Always list activities from most important to least important
The ones that are significant, as evidenced by leadership and
time commitment, will be obvious
Marginal activities like membership in the Monogram Club
should be de-emphasized
Don’t make a big production out of honors from companies that
put your picture in a book and then ask you to buy it
Follow the college’s preferred format for listing activities
If the space is too small, attach extra sheets where necessary
as supplemental material, especially when activities of in-depth
involvement need further explanation – however, submit one of
these in addition to filling out the college’s activities form
Explain Everything
If one of your activities was chairing the Founder’s Day
Committee, it won’t mean anything to the admissions office
unless you explain what you did and why the committee was
If it was an honor bestowed on only one senior, say so
If it involved presentations to alumni and coordination of twenty
volunteers for six months, spell that out
You could also have the sponsor, counselor, or principal write a
letter outlining the significance
The same goes for a weak spot in your record like a suspension
or failing grade – any reasonable explanation you can give
without sounding bitter or whiny would be helpful
Even more impressive would be an account of how the
experience helped you to mature as an individual
Emphasize Your Strengths!!!
Strong Academic Program
Directed the Gospel Choir at
your Church
Your Major is going to be
You’re a Legacy Application
Your wrote the essay of the
year and your teacher
passed it around the class
for all to read
First in your family to attend
You participated in a
significant community project
You are an Eagle Scout or
earned a Gold Key Award
You’re a Varsity Athlete
All-County or All-State
Ensemble Member
You come from a single
parent household and must
work part time to help with
Your last name is the same
as the college library to
which you are applying and
that is no coincidence!
Things That Can Hurt Your Chances
Your major will be Psychology or Biology
You do not know any teacher well enough to
ask for a recommendation
You are using the same essay for every
college and word processed it and forgot to
change the name of the college
Your essay topic is “Sports As A Metaphor for
You plagiarized a US History Paper and got
Things That Can Hurt Your Chances
You did not participate in any
extracurricular activities
 You received a D or U in an academic
course junior year 2nd semester
 If you wrote a letter to the college
admissions officer explaining the
extenuating circumstances for the D or
U you can help yourself
 You decided to protect your GPA by not
taking any AP courses
Avoid Gimmicks
Do not send cookies, flowers, or letters with
creative ways of saying “Please Accept Me”
 According to one famous admissions
counselor: “I don’t need a chocolate layer
cake, your kindergarten report card, or all the
poems you wrote in the ninth grade. I am
very interested in seeing the results of
whatever you consider your finest
accomplishment, whether that be
photographs of your set designs, your
concerto performance, you solo dance
routine, or your best theatrical monologue”
Get It In Early
Keep on top of deadlines - there will be different ones
for each college and for each part of the application
Some deadlines are as early as Oct. 1st
If the college offers rolling admissions they admit the
first good applicants that come along leaving fewer
slots for later applicants
If the college evaluates in one big pool, applying early
shows you are interested and they know that stronger
applicants tend to file early – waiting later risks
getting less consideration because of the flood of
applications pouring in all at once
Early Decision vs. Early Action
Both require students to apply by an
early deadline - usually between
October 15th and December 1st
 Decisions are usually rendered between
December 15 and February 1
 Borderline students are usually deferred
and considered with the regular
applicant pool at a later date
Early Decision
Early decision involves a BINDING DECISION to enroll if
accepted - you have to attend that school regardless of other
offers and without knowing any financial aid package that may
or may not be offered
You may only apply to one school through Early Decision and if
accepted, you must withdraw your applications to all other
Early Decision offers a slight advantage of acceptance colleges usually accept a higher percentage of applicants than
those that apply for regular decision - colleges desire students
that really want to attend their school
Early Decision is a good option for borderline students with
LOW financial need who have a clear first choice school - others
should be very CAUTIOUS!!!!
Early Action
Entails no commitment to enroll and therefore
offers little advantage for admission
 Early Action students, however, are often first
in line for merit scholarships and housing
 Competition in Early Action pools at highly
selective schools is generally tougher than in
the regular pool
 Some Early Action colleges now ask that
students apply early only to their institution,
however, you may still apply regular decision
to any other institution
Early Applications
It is difficult to give definitive advice
regarding early decision and early
 Only students that have thoroughly
investigated colleges and completed
most standardized testing by the end of
the eleventh grade with high test scores
will be in a strong position to consider
early application
Surviving the Audition
Step One - Prepare Your Resume!
You should have a resume to present at the audition
Tell your story on paper with a quick summary of the basic facts
needed to understand your experiences and strengths
Limit your resume to the most signification information - be brief
and to the point
Use outline form with highly visible headlines
Use high quality paper and printing for the most professional
look (the quality of your resume directly reflects your attitude
and professionalism)
Have a professional Photo or Head Shot to include with your
Include your resume with your application and audition request
Bring additional copies to each audition
Surviving the Audition:
Resume - What to Include
Name and Contact Information - address,
phone number, email address
Objective - career goals and college major
School Information - GPA, AP Courses/AP
Scores, Magnet, ACT/SAT Scores
Extracurricular Activities and Leadership
Community Service and Volunteer Work
Significant Repertoire Performed,
Productions, Work Crew Assignments, etc.
Surviving the Audition
Step Two - Set Up The Audition
Every college has it’s own audition protocol regarding applying for and
scheduling an admissions audition
Audition repertoire may be different at each school - find out about
each program’s audition requirements
Most colleges will require several specific works to be performed, often
from specific periods in history as well as specific genre of the type of
composition (scales, arpeggios, etudes, concertos, sonatas, etc)
Most colleges will not schedule an audition until all application forms
are filed and in order
Many of the top performing arts colleges will have pre-screening
auditions in certain areas where there are hundreds of applicants
You may have to get through a prescreening in order to be invited to
perform on site
Prescreening requires the submission of a high quality CD or DVD
Some schools may require on-site auditions, but may not provide an
accompanist or even expect an accompanist - FIND OUT!!!
Surviving the Audition
Step Two - continued
Most colleges have specific dates and time slots that fill up on a
first come first served basis
Remember that scholarship money goes quickly during the
audition season - the later you audition the less money that will
be available
As soon as you apply, find out when and how to schedule your
Set up arrangements in advance and fulfill all of the college’s
requirements so that you can arrive completely prepared and
think about your performance
You should already know the repertoire each school requires
and be well on your way to having the audition prepared
Surviving the Audition
Step Three - Show Your Stuff!!!
College auditions begin the minute you present yourself (even in
the parking lot)
Your professional attitude and appearance do make a difference
Faculty look not just for talent, skill, and style, but for those
students who apply themselves seriously and work
cooperatively with others
Be courteous to EVERYONE - an enthusiastic attitude is
Dress appropriately - a professional appearance with
conservative jewelry
Arrive early and warm up in the location provided
Bring your music and anything else you need for a successful
audition (extra reeds, strings, etc.)
Surviving the Audition
Step Three - Show Your Stuff!!!
Some colleges require the audition to be memorized
If asked, be prepared to let the committee know who is your 1st,
2nd, and 3rd choice of applied teachers
Bring extra copies of your resume
Be focused but flexible - interact well with others
Get into the performance aesthetically - this is your one shot to
gain admittance and to prove you are deserving of a merit
No excuses - the faculty has heard them all
Answer and ask questions (based on your research) which are
appropriate to the particular institution where you are auditioning
Do not present yourself as a “scholarship shopper”
Always thank the faculty after the audition
The National Unified Auditions for
Theatre and Musical Theatre
Twenty Five Universities that convene in the same city on the
same dates in the same hotel
Auditions are separate and private for each school
Unified auditions begin in late January and go until Mid February
Auditions are held in New York City, Chicago. Los Angeles, and
Las Vegas
A large number of non-member schools also hold their regional
auditions in the same city on the same dates at the same hotel
Some schools will accept walk-in auditions
You will have to schedule your audition with each individual
The audition fee for each school varies from $25 to $100 each
so bring your checkbook!!!!!
National Unified Audition Member
University of the Arts
Ball State University
Boston Conservatory
University of Cincinnati
Cornish College of the Arts
Emerson College
University of Evansville
The Hartt School
Ithaca College
University of Miami
University of Michigan
Montclair State University
Northern Illinois University
University of Oklahoma
Otterbein College
Pennsylvania State Univ.
Point Park University
Roosevelt University
College of Santa Fe
Southern Methodist Univ.
Texas Christian University
University of Utah
Viterbo University
Webster University
Try to relax
Dress nicely
Be on time
Be prepared to discuss 2 or 3 topics at length
(your school, favorite subject,
extracurriculars, current events, favorite
 Do not misrepresent yourself - don’t tell them
you like current events and then go blank
when they ask you about the Supreme
Court’s latest decision
 Keep your cool and be yourself
Expect Probing Questions
What books have you read lately?
 Why do you want to enroll here?
 What are your most important activities
and why are they valuable?
 What would you add to the life at this
 What other colleges are you
Good Questions to Ask an
What is distinctive about your school?
 What sets students here apart from
those at similar schools?
 What percentage of entering students
graduate within five years?
 What are the most common career
paths for your graduates?
 What is the average time a student
gains employment after graduation?
Your College Essay Can Make
the Difference!!!
Admissions officers are looking for spark, vitality, wit,
sensitivity, originality, and signs of a lively mind
 They want to know how well you can express
yourself in writing
 Try to be as concise and specific as possible
 Don’t waste words that aren’t essential to your point
 Reread the essay several times for word choice and
 If you have time - put your essay aside for a few
weeks and reread again to see if it still makes sense
 When talent, GPA, and test scores are equal - the
essay will often determine who is chosen for
Five Fundamentals of a
Successful Essay
Show, don’t tell - a skillful writer lets evidence show that a
proposition is true; a clumsy one tells because his writing is not
powerful enough to show
Use your own experiences - put yourself in the starring role and
use your own real life thoughts and feelings. Give the reader a
piece of your mind
Use the first person - the better the reader gets to know you as a
person the more likely you will be admitted
Begin with a flourish - the most important sentence in your
essay is the first one; hook the reader with a first sentence that
surprises and piques interest to read further – polish that first
sentence until it sparkles!!!!
Proofread - nothing is more damaging than an essay sull of
typoes, speling misteaks, and grammar that ain’t no good
Best Essay Approaches
Openly discuss a personal problem or
obstacle you have overcome
 Share something real even though
baring your soul to a complete stranger
may seem uncomfortable
 Write about a life changing experience
dominated by the facts that happened
and tell the story straight from your
Essay Turnoffs
Trite phrases - don’t write about wanting to help people - think of
something unique about you
Slickness - an essay that reads like it has been turned out by a
public relations firm never works - let the real you shine through
Cynicism - a positive approach to life will score points
Life histories - don’t put the reader to sleep - make sure your
essay has a point
Essay that goes on forever - more is not better - no sequels to
War and Peace please - do not exceed the amount of space or
number of words allotted for each essay
The Thesaurus Syndrome - don’t over utilize ostentatiously
pretentious language to delineate the thematic observations you
are endeavoring to articulate.
Letters of recommendation matter because of substance, not
because of who is writing them
They should tell the committee something about you as a
person that comes out nowhere else in your application
Find people who are familiar with your goals and aspirations and
can write about you in vivid detail
You will not be able to see the recommendation before it is sent,
so choose carefully
Most selective colleges require one recommendation from a
teacher - pick one who has taught you in your junior or senior
year, who respects you as a person, and who can testify to
some of your deeper and less obvious qualities
In general, do not send more recommendations than the
application calls for
October 1st is the deadline to ask teachers to write a letter of
Teacher Recommendations
Most applications only request one teacher
Ask teachers early - the deadline to ask teachers is
October 1st
Some teachers limit the number of letters they write
Make a folder for each teacher - exactly like your red
counselor folder
Teachers should mail their recommendations
separately - do not give those to the counselor to mail
Remember to give teachers at least 10 school days
notice when you need a letter of recommendation
How To Use Your Red Folder
During your senior class meeting, each student will receive a
red folder with a cover sheet and additional information inside
You will use this folder all year to request recommendations,
transcripts, and secondary school reports that are to be sent to
the colleges you will be applying to
Please write on the cover sheet the date that you turn the folder
into your counselor or teacher
You must submit this folder to your counselor at least 10 school
days in advance of your first application deadline in order to give
us time to process your applications
The earlier you turn in the folder the better - it gives us more
time to produce meaningful and high quality letters and reports
Send the actual application and fees separately (online or
through the mail). Do not submit money or checks to the
guidance office
The Red Folder - Front Cover
Complete all information requested on
the front cover
 When listing what is inside your folder,
only list what is actually being turned in
that day and not all of the colleges you
are applying to for the whole year
 The order colleges are listed on the
front cover needs to be the order they
are inside the folder from earliest due
date to the latest
The Red Folder - Inside Contents
Letter to your counselor
stating information about you
we may not be aware of and
is not on your resume
An up to date resume
Any information that will help
us write a rich and
substantial letter of
If you wish, you can even
write your own letter of
recommendation and we will
refine it and add our own
thoughts about you
Secondary School Report,
Counselor Form, or
Curriculum Verification
Form, Scholarship
Manila Envelope with
Stamps for Postage
Large - 4-5 stamps
Paper-clip forms to envelope
Do not place stamps on
envelope - just include them
Place forms and envelopes
in the order they are listed
on the front cover page
Red Folder - Letter to Your
Include additional information that is not on your
You should include more personal information
Explain what is unique about you
Describe your strengths and weaknesses
Describe any hardships you have overcome
Describe how the university would benefit from
accepting you - what special traits do you have that
will benefit the school
Who has been your greatest influence in life and how
have they have helped shape the kind of person you
What are you passionate about and why?
The Red Folder - Common
Make sure you indicate which schools need
the common application
 The common application usually requests
counselors to submit on line – when you
finish filling out your portion of the Common
Application, there should be a feature that
allows you to send an invitation to your
counselor to submit the Secondary School
Report online.
 I will receive an email from you at this point
which requests me to fill out the Secondary
School Report Online.
Mid-Year Reports and Final
Some colleges (and all that use the common
application) require a mid-year report and all
colleges require a final transcript
 Mid-year reports are not sent automatically you must remind your counselor during the
2nd week in January to send a mid-year
report if your college requires it
 Fill out the mid-year report of the common
application and give it to your counselor
 We will send final transcripts two weeks after
school is out in June to the one school you
tell us you will be attending for 2013-2014
Stamps, Official Transcripts,
School Profile
Make sure you bring in stamps for anything that has
to be mailed to a college you are applying to or to
organizations/corporations that sponsor scholarships
All transcripts sent to colleges are OFFICIAL - inside
a sealed envelope with the principal’s signature and
official school seal
In addition to the above, we are required to send a
school profile with your transcript
The school profile highlights the school’s grading
scale and important statistics about our academic
curriculum, test scores, and student body
Financial Aid - Sobering Facts
The cost of attending the most prestigious private
colleges is about $200,000 over four years
 Tuition at public universities has risen more than 50%
in inflation-adjusted dollars over the past ten years
 As college costs go through the roof, government aid
has failed to keep pace
 Grant programs have withered and student debt has
ballooned - make sure your chosen profession allows
you the financial resources to repay these loans
 Unless your last name is Gates or Rockefeller,
money will ultimately influence the college search at
every step
What Will College Cost?
Tuition - payment for required courses, study abroad, exchange
Fees - registration, parking, activities, health, laboratory, many
Books and Materials - computer, required texts and supplies
Room - cost of dorm or apartment plus utilities and telephone
Food - meal plans, eating out, groceries
Transportation - two to three trips home or, if you keep an auto
on campus, your gas expenses, insurance, parking fees, etc.
Personal - clothes, laundry, recreation, medical and dental,
Miscellaneous - catchall for anything that doesn’t fit in another
category - think about adding 10% of the total amount of above
Types of Financial Aid
Merit Based Aid
Awarded solely on the basis of academic record or outstanding
ability in many areas (such as the arts)
Usually merit aid starts with GPA’s around 3.8 and ACT scores
around 28 or is based entirely on your college audition
The amount of aid increases with higher scores
Each college sets it’s own criteria for granting merit based aid search the scholarship section of their websites
Usually there is a separate application for Merit Aid, but some
colleges are now automatically granting this aid based on
examining your transcript and academic record you list on your
general application for admission - make sure you know which
method the college you are applying to uses for merit aid
Types of Financial Aid
Need Based Aid
Need is the difference between what it costs to attend
a school and what you and your family are expected
to pay
You might think of this as a formula:
Cost of Education
Expected Family Contribution
The Expected Family Contribution is calculated
through use of the FAFSA
In order to receive any financial aid you must fill out
FAFSA stands for Free Application for
Federal Student Aid
 The form requests financial information for
the 2012 calendar year
 Colleges use the FAFSA to determine
eligibility for financial aid, including
scholarships, grants, loans, and work study
 The State and Federal government will use
the FAFSA to determine eligibility for grants
and loans
Information Needed When
Filling Out the FAFSA Form
U.S. Income Tax Return for 2012
State (Local) Income Tax Return
W-2 Forms for money earned the past year
Current Bank Statements
Records of untaxed income
Current mortgage information
Business and farm records if applicable
Records of stock, bonds, and other
 Student’s driver’s license and Social Security
Other FAFSA Information
The FAFSA can be found online at
Applications open January 1, 2013
Both the student and one parent will have to request a PIN
Deadline to apply is set by the colleges themselves, but in
general Kentucky deadlines are February 15, 2013 – Check to
make sure!
File your income tax return as early as possible so you can
submit the FAFSA and be eligible for as much aid as possible
Remember that aid is given out to those who request it - waiting
means there is less to distribute
There will be a FAFSA and Financial Aid Workshop at Manual
on December 3, 2012 in the Manual Auditorium at 7:00 PM plan to attend
Attend College Goal Sunday in January or February if you are
having trouble with the FAFSA - there will be counselors
available that will actually sit down with you and help you fill out
the form
The CSS Profile
CSS stands for College Scholarship Service
The CSS Profile is an application distributed by the
College Board
 It is primarily designed to give private member
institutions of the College Board a closer look into the
finances of a student and family
 It is much more detailed than the FAFSA
 Generally, colleges with early acceptance programs
use the CSS Profile in addition to FAFSA because
the FAFSA is not available until after January 1st
 For the 2010-2011 form the application fee was $9.00
and an additional $16.00 per college submitted
Popular Performing Arts Schools
that Request the CSS Profile
Bard College
 Boston University
 Butler University
 Carnegie Mellon
 Cleveland Institute of
 DePauw University
 Emerson College
Ithaca College
 Manhattan School of
 Northwestern University
 Oberlin Conservatory
 University of Michigan
 Yale University
 Plus all the Most
Competitive Academic
Colleges and
Composition of a Financial Aid
An offer of financial aid from a college
may include all or some of the following:
 State Grants (if attending in Kentucky)
 Federal Grants
 Work-Study Programs
 Loans – subsidized & unsubsidized
(must be repaid)
 Scholarships and/or tuition remission
95% of all scholarship money is available through the
colleges themselves - search their financial aid site
Alumni Groups, National Corporations, Associations,
your local high school, local businesses, community
service organizations, fraternities and sororities,
banks, and churches all offer scholarships
When scholarships become available that we know
about you will receive an email announcing the
specifics on eligibility requirements - click on counselors, then
click on scholarships
Check out Manual’s College Career Room for
Scholarship Applications
Scholarship Scams
Warning signs of scholarship scams:
 Application fees
 Other fees
 Guaranteed Winnings
 Unsolicited Opportunities
 Mail Drop Box Number or Residence for
a return address
Internet Searches for Financial
Aid and Scholarships
Financial Aid:
Includes a top-quality homepage of links to many financial aid and related sites.
The expected family contribution estimator is a highlight of this site
Free scholarship search database that saves your profile and emails new
sources of private merit aid to your mailbox online
Loan Repayment Estimator:
Estimates monthly payments for various college loan programs
Sallie Mae:
Nellie Mae:
Information on Sallie Mae and Nellie Mae college loans
Net Price Calculator
As of October 2011, all colleges are required to include a net
price calculator in their websites
It provides students with an estimated total cost to attend their
The “net price” is the amount students would be expected to pay
after grants and scholarships are deducted from the cost of
Net price calculators represent a significant step toward helping
students and their families make informed decisions about
college costs
The College Board also has a net price calculator on their
website located at
that gives students a personalized estimate, based on his/her
situation and the institution’s financial aid funds and awarding
policies and practices
Some Thoughts for Parents
Communicate - be available to talk
Set Financial Parameters - as a family, set an understanding
early on about how much you can pay out of pocket
Be Realistic - know the college’s standards and expectations
and your own qualifications
Think Broadly - some of the best colleges may be ones neither
of you has ever heard of
Let the Student Take Center Stage - don’t try to manipulate the
system - let them stand on their own merits
Don’t Live Through Your Child - allow them to follow his or her
own dreams instead of your own dreams
Be Supportive - remind them they will be accepted to a good
school - one where they will make friends, have fun, be
challenged, and get the education they deserve
Redouble your efforts - when the rejection (thin envelope) and
acceptance letters (thick envelope) arrive, be there for them
For Specific Information
National Merit Finalists; Governor’s Scholars
Program, Graduation Program - contact Amy Medley
[email protected]
ILP; NCAA Clearinghouse - contact Marti Johnston
[email protected]
Advanced Placement - contact Christy Teague at
[email protected]
Scholarships; Governor’s School for the Arts; Junior
and Senior Awards Programs, YPAS Senior Night contact Dennis Robinson at
[email protected]