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Extension > Live Healthy, Live Well > Preparing for College

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Preparing for College

By Antonio Alba Meraz, Extension Educator

Are you the parent of a high school junior or senior who wants to go to college? There are many issues to consider, but before you do — talk to your child.

Ask your child questions such as: “Why do you want to go to college?” “How will going to college help you achieve what you want in life?”

Taking time to explore your child’s wishes and motivations will help you both set goals and act to achieve those goals.

The first thing your child should do is take classes in high school that will best prepare him or her for college. Your child also should ask about college courses to take while still in high school.

At the same time, do research with your child on different colleges and visit them, if possible, to decide which are most suitable and affordable. If you need help paying for college, look into financial aid and scholarships.

Next, your child should apply to the colleges that most interest him or her. Your child also should take at least one of the two most widely used college admission examinations used in the United States, and probably should take both since colleges have different requirements.

The two exams are the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) and the American College Testing exam (ACT).

There’s much more to preparing for college, of course. But don’t worry! Your child’s school counselor can help you sort through all the considerations and options for college. And teachers can help, too, so talk to them, as well.

For more information about choosing a college in Minnesota, read this guide published by the Minnesota Office of Higher Education: https://www.ohe.state.mn.us/pdf/ChoosingACollege.pdf.

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