April College Readiness Tips

Happy April. April is a busy month for both juniors and seniors. Here are our tips for counselors working with both juniors and seniors.

  1. Attend College Readiness Conferences. There are organizations in every state that have spring and summer workshops and superacacconferences. In California, the Pacific Northwest, and Mountain States, our Super-ACAC is May 18-20. It also has the IDEA conference, which addresses college access and success for under-represented students, is May 18. There are always scholarships available.
  2. Summer Plans. Your students need to be busy this summer.
    • There are many summer programs that recruit at-risk students. Most deadlines have passed but there are still many accepting applications. Please start collecting programs for next year. Some programs are due the end of April.
    • If not, encourage them to volunteer, get an internship, or do something else significant this summer. Colleges want under-represented students to be active during their summers.
    • There is no one comprehensive list. But here is a site that lists some programs.

    i.     https://www.teenlife.com/

    ii.     http://www.usummer.com/

  3. Standardized Test Readiness. These tests make or break your students’ access to top colleges. With the tough competition for at-risk students, our students need to take the tests as prepared as possible. We need to push kids to see the importance of these tests. Many schools help connect kids with free or reduced test prep programs. Some bring providers in. Others link kids to programs in their communities. Programs exist. But help is not available for all
  4. Standardized Testing schedules. Please encourage your students to take the SAT twice, the ACT twice, and SAT Subject Tests twice.
    • Low-income students receive fee waivers to do so. Your counselor or administrator needs to order fee waivers. Make sure your counselor calls early to arrange for these waivers as they do not arrive quickly. Privileged kids take the tests several times                                             i.     SAT FEE WAIVERS-http://professionals.collegeboard.com/testing/waivers/guidelines/sat
    •                                    ii.     ACT FEE WAIVERS-http://www.act.org/aap/pdf/feewaiver.pdf
    • We recommend students take the ACT in April or June and then September or October.
    • We recommend students take the SAT in May or June and October or December.
    • We recommend students take SAT Subject Tests in May or June and November as foreign languages offer their listening tests only in November.
    • Standardized Testing Sign-Ups. The registration deadlines coming up are
    1. April 6 for May 2 SAT/Subject Tests
    2. May 8 for June 13 ACT
    3. May 8 for June 6 SAT/Subject Tests
  5. There are many college expos and fairs in your area this spring.
  • Many colleges are banding together and going on the road. Exploring College Options is one. Duke, Georgetown, Harvard, Penn, Stanford travel together. http://www.exploringcollegeoptions.org/
  • Try to bring kids to local colleges before they end for the school year. Seeing colleges in action is ideal.
  • NACAC also has college fairs around the country.
  1. college fairsTry to get a bus to take your kids to the free NACAC College Fairs. April 30 is the date for the Greater Los Angeles fair. 9am-12 noon and 6pm -9 p.m.
  2. Check the dates for fairs in your area. http://www.nacacnet.org/college-fairs/SpringNCF/Pages/default.aspx
  3. Have kids register so they can bring the bar code so colleges can immediately place them on their mailing lists.
  4. Give them a treasure hunt sheet to help them find colleges within their academic and interests range


Seniors. No…we have not forgotten them.

  1. We are providing our tips for seniors who were admitted to four year universities, especially Cal States and UCs about what to do in the next blog.
  2. Below we are also providing a list of the UCS and their summer bridge programs.
  3. For your top seniors, please help them find a summer bridge programs at their colleges. Yale, Pomona, Dartmouth, Cornell are some colleges that offer summer bridge programs.
  4. Please, please encourage them to fight financial packages that are top heavy in loans.
  5. Your students can still apply for scholarships. Help them find ones from their state representatives, city council people, school districts, and more.
  6. The 2015 I’m First Scholarship will open first week of April. http://www.imfirst.org/scholarship/#.VQ3sQVPF8mU

UC Summer Bridge Programs. summer bridge

i.     Berkeley http://summerbridge.berkeley.edu/index.php Deadline to apply: March 26-May 1.

ii.     Merced. http://summerbridge.ucmerced.edu/. Deadline to apply: Rolling. Prefers by mid-April.

iii.     Santa Barbara. http://eop.sa.ucsb.edu/Home/STEP.aspx. Deadline to apply: May 1-July 1.

iv.     Irvine. http://sss.uci.edu/summer-bridge/. Deadline to apply: May 15-June 17.

v.     UCSD. http://students.ucsd.edu/academics/_organizations/oasis/transition-programs/summer-bridge/dates-info.html. Deadline to apply: June 19.

vi.     Riverside. Not yet available. http://summerbridge.ucr.edu/

vii.     Santa Cruz. Must be invited. http://eop.ucsc.edu/content/bridge. Also has an engineering year-long bridge program. App opens in May. http://mep.soe.ucsc.edu/home

viii.     UCLA. Summer program not yet available. Engineering and Diversity summer program. http://www.ceed.ucla.edu/programs/undergrad/bridge



About rjoseph

I am the creator and visionary behind this site. I want to do everything I can to help students consider college as an option, even when they may be the first in their family to go or may not have the funds at hand. Don't let anyone tell you that you don't have the right or the ability to go to college.

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