Beth Anderson, College & Career Advisor
Be sure to watch for announcements with reminders about the various opportunities and deadlines mentioned below.
Career & College Advisor Notes...February 2021
Dear Students and Families!
Welcome to the second half of the school year! This semester promises to be full of opportunities for learning and growth, and I encourage you to hit the ground running. To that end, the bulk of this month’s newsletter is taken up with a long list of career/college/financial aid events.
Please email, call, or stop by my office with any questions!
Virtual Info Session Spotlight: Big Bend Community College
Start by watching BBCC’s virtual campus tour video to learn more about their campus community, and then take a look at some of their unique program offerings, especially in the areas of Aviation and Manufacturing.
Test Prep Series at Liberty Bell
Ms. Anderson will be offering a test prep series before school/during Advisory starting in early March and running through April. (Juniors & their families will get a separate email containing all the relevant details, including a full schedule of sessions.) Students may also choose to take advantage of the wide variety of SAT and ACT prep resources available both online and in the school/regional libraries:
- Khan Academy offers free SAT prep and practice tests: https://www.khanacademy.org/sat
- Online ACT prep resources are available here: https://academy.act.org
We plan to offer the SAT at Liberty Bell once during the spring (date TBD). Please be aware that this plan could change due to COVID restrictions, and students may choose to register for other SAT/ACT dates at any of the testing sites in our region. See Mrs. Spellman or Ms. Anderson with questions or to obtain a fee waiver (all students who receive free/reduced lunch qualify for free testing!).
Another plug for test-optional admission: Just in the past week a few prominent colleges (including Williams College) have confirmed that their test-optional policies will continue through 2023. Others will surely follow, and a number of schools, like the University of Washington, have made their test-optional policies permanent. You can check out a current list of test-optional schools at FairTest: The National Center for Fair and Open Testing.
Coming in early March — Local Scholarship Listings
Seniors, Mrs. Spellman and Ms. Anderson will let you know as soon as 2021 versions of the local scholarship applications are ready. We have an incredibly generous community, and our local civic organizations can’t wait to honor your accomplishments with their awards.
Have a great month, everyone!
MVSD College and Career Advisor
(509) 996-2215, x4175
Upcoming Deadlines & Opportunities
Tuesdays & Thursdays from 1-2pm all month • ANEW Pre-Apprenticeship Info Sessions
Interested in learning more about apprenticeship opportunities either during or after high school? Sign up for one of ANEW’s information sessions or watch a pre-recorded version on YouTube.
February 3, 18, 23, & 25 • Virtual FAFSA Help Nights
Seniors & families: there’s still time to complete your FAFSA application in order to receive financial aid at many post-secondary institutions for the fall of 2021! See the attached flyer for more information about virtual help nights specifically for students/families in our region, or set up a time to work on the FAFSA with Ms. Anderson one-on-one (either in person or via Zoom).
Wednesday, February 3, 5:30-6:15pm • WAEF Scholarship Webinar
The Washington Apple Education Foundation wants to answer all your questions about applying for scholarships! The webinar will cover topics including: college & career plans, extra-curricular activities, letters of reference, personal statements, short answers and essays.
Saturday, February 6, 1:00-5:00pm • BigFuture Days: West & Southwest
This virtual event is open to all students & families who are interested in exploring college options in the Western region of the U.S. You’ll have the opportunity to listen, learn, and participate in live Q&A and online chat with admissions representatives and current students.
Thursday, February 11, 3:00-4:30pm • Virtual Community and Technical College Fair
Admissions representatives from Skagit Valley College, Cascadia College, Edmonds College, Everett Community College, Lake Washington Institute of Technology, and Shoreline Community College are teaming up again to share more about their schools and the programs they offer. A link for the fair will be emailed once you register.
Thursday, February 11 • Washington State Opportunity Scholarship is Due
Another great funding opportunity for seniors who are planning to major in healthcare or STEM fields at a 2- or 4-year college or university in Washington. Income limits are relatively high—a student from a family of 4 with an income of $127,000 or less would qualify for the award.
Friday, February 12 • Leadership 1000 Scholarship Application (new deadline!)
Seniors, if you’re considering attending a 2- or 4-year college or university in Washington state and meet the income eligibility guidelines, apply for the Leadership 1000 scholarship. The award is $5,000 per year and it’s renewable for 4 years ($20,000 total). The application does include several short essays, but all students who meet the income criteria are encouraged to apply—it’s worth your effort!
Sunday, February 28, 11:00am-4:00pm — NACAC Virtual College Fair
Open to all students and families, with representatives from colleges around the country. Check out their extensive list of exhibitors and live information sessions.
Career Exploration Resource List
College & Career Compass
A new tool from the Washington Student Achievement Council with resources to help you explore educational pathways and find supports for your individual needs.
Find Your Grind
Research careers based on your lifestyle assessment; free to all LBHS students.
Career and college research tools available to all LBHS/ILC students.
Career exploration & financial aid resources for students and families.
Other Helpful Resources
Paying for College
If you missed the live “Paying for College Night 2020” Zoom presentation, please watch this recording. The information shared here applies to all students who are planning to attend a trade or technical school, 4-year college or university, community college, or any other career training program.
We tackled questions related to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA), which is the foundation of the aid process. Other topics we covered include: calculating the net price of attendance, exploring the four main types of financial aid available to students, and navigating the aid process in the time of COVID.
The College Board website provides you with all the information you need for applying to college. It allows you to compare colleges. It provides you with GPA and SAT information to how you compare with other students. It provides financial information about the cost of schools and how they distribute their financial aid. This website also has a Expected Family Contribution and a Net Price Calculator available. www.CollegeBoard.org
FairTest lists all of the colleges that do not use SAT/ACT scores for admitting students.
List of all schools in the Western Undergraduate Exchange. Students who are residents of WUE states are eligible to apply for a reduced tuition rate of 150% of resident tuition at participating schools.
Start your Common Application.
This is the official site for the FAFSA.
Scholarship Training Guide – Washington Apple Education Foundation (WAEF)
“Twenty-six years ago, members of Washington’s tree fruit industry formed the Washington Apple Education Foundation (WAEF) to develop, promote and manage the industry’s charitable works. The foundation has increased support for college-bound students annually. This year 310 students are on college campuses with help from $1 million in WAEF scholarships.”
“Looking for scholarships? We connect Washington students of all types with Washington scholarship providers….for FREE.”
“Leading online resource for finding scholarships to help you pay for school.”
“Sign up to get matched to scholarships that are perfect for you.”
Fiske Guide to Colleges
Best guide to colleges and universities.
The College Solution – Guide for Finding the Right School at the Right Price
Great book on the financial aspects of college. Her website is also extremely helpful. www.thecollegesolution.com
College and Career Counseling Program
The goal of our College and Career Counseling program is to provide students and their families with the information and resources necessary for them to make well-informed choices about their post-secondary education. Liberty Bell recognizes the diversity in our families and understands that what might be right for one student may not be a good fit for another.
Therefore, we work individually with students and their families to help them successfully develop and achieve their post-graduation goals – whether that is applying to a 4-year, 2-year or technical college, designing a productive Gap Year plan or entering the military or workforce. Some of the specific services that we offer include:
- Educating students and parents about the post-secondary educational choices available to them.
- Meeting individually with juniors, seniors and parents to help them with their college lists, the application process, college essays and financial aid needs, including the FAFSA, the Profile and College Bound Scholarship, as well as with SAT/ACT prep and registration.
- Holding college information evenings for students and parents to make sure that they have all the resources and support they need to reach their goals.
- Working with the guidance counselor to ensure that 9th and 10th graders take the necessary classes to be eligible for college admissions.
Applying to college should be a fun and exciting process; but at times it can be a bit overwhelming. If you find yourself feeling stuck, or if you have questions about any part of the application process, contact our office at (509) 996-2215.
We would like to thank the Public School Funding Alliance for their generous support of this program.