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Montclair State University

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What should every freshman at your school know before they start?

Students should take high school very seriously, those four years serve as preparation for their upcoming college career. Everyone should take initiative in high school to discover colleges early and learn that today college is possible for anyone who plans to attend. The most important step in searching for colleges is the process that requires an exam that determines your placement. Many high schools do not stress enough on its importance to review its material. The Scholastic Aptitude Test better known as the SAT tests the knowledge that should have been performed throughout the four years of high school. The earlier students begin to prepare the better they can expect from their results. In fact, the results obtained from this exam allows colleges to provide students with financial assistance based on their score. The better the score the better the award they present to their students. However, the reality is not everyone achieves the 2400. Students are also accepted or awarded to a school based on their participation in their community, their talents in a sport, their grades, and should visit their school counselors regularly. Collegeboard.com becomes your best friend throughout the college process it ha everything you need.

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On the verge of concluding my teenage years and moving on to a new chapter in my life, I have a sole grasp on a successful adventure into the world of selecting colleges and dealing with both social and academic affairs within it thus far. Upon searching for the appropriate college to attend, students must address certain situations that may not occur to them until enroled in an institution. Such situations include, comfortability and a sense of resiliency or adjustment to unfamiliar circumstances. Student must be, hands down, 100% comfortable in their new enviroment. Selecting an institution based on its reputation as a party school should not be essential. I find that many of my peers transfered out of their "party schools" and settled in a place that better suited their desires and comfort level. This coincides with their ability to demonstrate resiliency. When this student is placed in a new, post-high school setting known as "the real world," they must know how to bounce back from difficult grading or a rough semester. This resiliency will ultimately help them develope into a stronger individual and strengthen their will to further succeed once positioned in their desired field of study.

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My first few minutes of orientation at Montclair State University (MSU) impressed on me the distinct difference between high school and college. I quickly realized that I was on my own. There were no guidance counselors to hold my hand through registration or provide assistance with organizational skills. The orientational events that were planned by the university however, provided me with the tools to begin to make this important transition. By days' end of new student orientation, I had produced, unassisted a class schedule my freshman year that would keep me on track for graduating in four years. I now realized that I have been entrusted with a significant degree of freedom and independence and that I must use it wisely. The small learning community at MSU has helped me a great deal in managing my time. I have been very successful in focusing on my courses of study and still maintaining a relationship with my peers, being careful to interact only minimally with those who do not share my philosophy of what a college experience should be. I have also been fortunate to be able to take advantage of and participate in many of the extracurricular activities at MSU.

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The greatest decision that I made in regards to my college life was to live on campus. Living in the residence halls opened up so many possibilities for growth, responsibility, activities, and really being part of a community. It is so wonderful to be so close to all of your classes, yet feel you have your own place to live. In my case, 95% of my friends from college were from the residence halls and organizations, NOT from my classes, and making friends is absolutely CRUCIAL to having a successful and enjoyable college experience. Besides that, chose a school which offers very good financial aid. Also, in my case it was close to home, yet far enough to feel like I was somewhere new. Having your major available is important too! The school did have my major, which I chose during high school and saw through to the end. Make the most out of your college experience by working on-campus and joining student-run organizations. As for me, I started an organization as its President, and even studied a semester abroad in Japan. Independent studies were also offered. In the end, choose the school that will work for you.

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“No matter how well you may plan, interruptions can happen, but it is how you overcome these interruptions and advance forward in your professional and personal ambitions. The life you live with a degree versus without a degree will drastically differ.” This is the advice I wish I could have given myself in high school. With a wide-eyed hunger for more out of life, I moved abroad to complete University my sophomore year. However, when the economy hit hard, I found myself financially unable to return to college. The decision I made to put my education on hold is one that I regret daily. Almost seven years have passed since my high school graduation. After realizing I could have graduated and could have already had a few years’ of work experience underway, completing my degree is the most important priority in my life. Without a degree, I am short-changing myself in what I want most both in my professional life and in my personal life. If chosen as the recipient of this scholarship, I will be able to achieve a long-desired dream, as I am financially in need of assistance to make this dream come true.

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The best advice I can give to parents that have college-bound teenagers is this: do your research!!! Just like with any other major decision you have to make in your life, making sure you know the facts about the school before you attend it is very important! You and your son/daughter should make a list of about 6 six schools that he/she would like to apply to. One should be a "safety" school, one should be a "dream" school, and the rest should be moderately competitive. Once you have a list of 6 schools, you and your son/daughter should talk about what is unique about each school. Some schools might be far away, some might be too expensive, some private, some public, some big, some small, etc. The last and final step: APPLY, APPLY, APPLY! Make sure teacher reccomendations, SAT scores, and essays are completed. Apply for early action to schools that are most liked. Now that you've been accepted to college, the oppurtunities are endless for you. It's true that your friends and experiences at college will stay with you for a lifetime! At college you can finally discover who you really are!

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As a high school senior I worked three jobs to have some money saved up for college, and recieved advanced placement classes. To go back in time with the knowledge I know now, I would say to myself to relax and focus on my Advanced Placement classes. Since with higher scores I could enroll to college with credits. My third job was not necessary because I recieved a fair amount of Fanancial aid and the two jobs could support the other payments. I will say to budget my time because in college it becomes very valuable. Restrain myself from slacking and running off with friends so I can focus in class. Not to be afraid to participate and ask questions with all your teachers, because those letters of recommandations will benifit you. As well I would tell myself to take advantage and look for scholarships in time, because they help no matter what. I would tell myself to seek for help from High School counselors for scholarships information given to them. The most important thing I will tell myself is to have faith and not to worry about not getting accepted to a college, because your grades are excellent.

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I am jumping out of my skin at the opportunity to speak with my high school senior self. There is so much she doesn’t know, even about herself! My advice to her would be that it’s ok to be introverted. The media and peers around high school students portray the message that being outgoing is positive and being shy is negative. After all, what shy student is voted most likely to be remembered in the senior superlatives section of the yearbook? When I reflect back onto my high school years, I wish I realized that being timid is equally as important as having gregarious qualities. My high school self was trying to adapt personality qualities that felt alien, but were socially desirable. Despite my aptitude, I was sabotaging my own success by adapting qualities that were not my own! During my college experience I realized that there are outlets for people with every personality quality imaginable. I wish I realized that if I was true to myself from the beginning, I would fall exactly where I was meant to be. After college, I will always remember to embrace my personality with triumph instead of defeat.

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My advice for any future high school graduate is to always stay motivated. First, always do your research; this is very important before you choose a school. Make sure to go on plenty of tours and see what financial opportunities are in store for you before applying. It's always good to ask for advice on schools from teachers who are particularly in your field so you get a personal quote to vouch for schools you are thinking about. Once you find out which school fits you best, take the chance of networking with the people at the school before hand. Remember you are choosing a school that you feel is best for you, so make it worth anything you put into it. Also, communicating with people at your future school prepares you ahead of time. Don't be discouraged if you have to start at a community college first; remember you can always transfer once you feel ready to go! There are even more scholarships and opportunities for transfer students as well!!! Another thought would be to remember why your in college and avoid falling into any bad habits that occur. Alway have fun and embrace your future goals!!!

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Senior year of high school is a year that many say they will never forget, and many say they never want to leave. While senior year can seem easy, it is only to make up for the stressors that preparing for the next stage of your life bestows upon you. Applying to college requires a lot of planning; first choose a region that you want to attend college in. Second, if you have a major in mind, within that region try to find the top schools for that field. Then start researching those schools, don?t be afraid to ask guidance counselors or teachers, they can be very knowledgeable. See what people think of the schools? reputations, when applying for jobs after college a school?s reputation can be an important factor, usually schools that are known throughout the country are good choices (Ohio State). Then go visit the schools, try to find a common way to rate each school, and pick your top schools from that. Also make a list for each school you plan on applying to with all the requirements and deadlines. Don?t procrastinate; try to show initiative by sending in all required forms on time.

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