Impressing admissions counselors not as easy this year

December 28th, 2005 by Key Magazine

The Holiday Season has sent millions of high school students home for a short break from school, but the task of getting into college continues. With application deadlines looming, financial aid applications to complete and standardized tests to retake, high school seniors are feeling the pressures of getting into college in new ways. The increased stressed seems to have increased their creativity as well.

One student wrapped his University of Notre Dame application in a leprechaun made of balloons. Another sent Indiana University photographs of herself as a toddler in a crimson cheerleading skirt to show a lifelong passion for all things Hoosier. Others include resumes, videotaped pleas for acceptance and newspaper clippings of high school highlights.

Universities and colleges do not want most of those frills, but admission officials report a surge of them in this year’s applications. More than 50,000 applications will reach Indiana colleges and universities this year.

Read the full Indianapolis Star article here.

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Study finds college classes underused by high school students

December 14th, 2005 by Key Magazine

High school students benefit from taking college classes while in high school. Dual-enrollment programs have grown in popularity amongst college-bound high school students. But a recent study found that despite the popularity, college classes are still underused by high school students.

Researchers at the University of Minnesota’s Center for School Change would like to see more students taking advantage of the dual-enrollment program that gives high school students a realistic view of what college is like without the hefty price tag.
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What college admissions counselors are really looking for in students

December 9th, 2005 by Key Magazine

This time of year is a time of panic for most high school seniors. The pressure of the college selection process is behind them. Now it is time to complete applications, apply for scholarships and wait for their letters of admission or letters of rejection. There is no sure way to guarantee admissions into any school, but knowing what admissions counselors are looking for can help.

There are four major areas that students should focus on as they complete their college applications. Admissions counselors at schools ranging from small, private to large, public universities across the country have identified these four areas as the most important.
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10 questions high school guidance counselors should answer

December 6th, 2005 by Key Magazine

Making the time to meet with all of your students on a regular basis is little more than wishful thinking for most high school guidance counselors. Large case loads, small budgets and few resources present challenges on all levels. But, there are a few things you can do to help your students make the most of the time they have with you.
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High school safety at ten year highs

November 21st, 2005 by Key Magazine

How safe is your high school? As a guidance counselor, you have no doubt had to deal with the normal fights and arguments between students. Some schools contend with a lot more due to gang activity, drug use and sale, domestic violence and sexual assault being prevalent on campus. How does your school measure up? Is violence at your school a growing problem, or is it following a national trend of decline?

“One in 20 students was a victim of violence or theft at school in 2003, the government said in a report that shows school crime rates about were half what they were 10 years earlier.”
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High Court rules in special education dispute

November 14th, 2005 by Key Magazine

In a much watched legal debate about who has the burden of proof in disputing the adequacy of a child’s individualized education program, the Supreme Court decided, 6 to 2, that the party bringing a challenge before an administrative law judge has the responsibility of showing that it is unsatisfactory.

Justice O’Connor said the 1970′s Individuals With Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) legislation covered nearly seven million children across the country, and that it was meant to reverse a sad history. Before its passage, she said, “the majority of disabled children in America were ‘either totally excluded from schools or sitting idly in regular classrooms awaiting the time when they were old enough to drop out.’ ”

Read the full opinion available online

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College transfer rates on the rise

November 10th, 2005 by Key Magazine

College students have always taken advantage of the transfer policies at most colleges and universities. An increase in the rate of transfers has caused some higher education administrators to raise an eyebrow in alarm.

According to the National Survey of Student Engagement results released this week, nearly half of all college students take courses at more than one university before attaining their degree.

“It’s a myth we have in higher education to say students start and finish at one institution,” said Jillian Kinzie, an Indian University professor and author of the survey.
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Hispanic students more often in poor, overcrowded schools

November 4th, 2005 by Key Magazine

“Hispanic teens are more likely than any other racial or ethnic group to attend public high schools that have the dual characteristics of extreme size and poverty,” Richard Fry, senior associate at the Pew Hispanic Center, was quoted by the Associated Press.

A recent report by the center places more than half of Hispanic teenagers in schools with enrollments of roughly 1,800 students. They also found that student-teacher ratios of greater than 22 to 1 was common for four of ten Hispanic high school students. These numbers are significantly different for white and black students in public schools across the nation.
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How much is college tuition at the priciest schools?

October 27th, 2005 by Key Magazine

CNN Money recently reported on the tuition costs at the ten most expensive colleges and universities in the nation. The most expensive schools list includes both private and public schools located across the country.

Although some of the schools boast a hefty tuition cost, many place limits on the amount of financial aid in loans that students can borrow. Rather than force students in loan debt to pay for the high costs of a college education, they increase the amount of grants that students can qualify for. This can come in handy for your high school students who are concerned about paying for a college education.
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Many factors affect the cost of a college education

October 20th, 2005 by Key Magazine

The recent reports on the cost of a college education have generated much buzz in the media and blogosphere lately. As the cost of a college education rises at a slower pace, the amount of financial aid has decreased at a much faster rate. After decades of trying to make college accessible to the general public, rising cost increasingly make college something only the elite in America can afford. Preparing your students for the realities of paying for a college education should be done early and often.

Because need-based financial aid is decreasing, high school students must rely on other financial aid options such as merit-based aid, private and local scholarship programs, community service scholarships and business grants.
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