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High School Juniors Should Seriously be Preparing for College!

High School Juniors Should Seriously be Preparing for College!

Preparing for college and paying for college are two of the most perplexing tasks a junior in high school has to contemplate. After seventeen years of helping students get into college, I would say that the junior year is the most important high school year for college prep events and results.

The PSAT (Preliminary Scholarship Aptitude Test) is given in October each year to help students prepare for the real SAT. The PSAT taken in the student’s junior year is the year that high scoring students can earn National Merit Scholarships, thereby qualifying for dozens of scholarships from ½ tuition to full tuition (52 colleges)  to a full scholarship at eight universities. This can be valued at $200,000 or more!  This is not an easy goal to accomplish but when did a full scholarship to college ever come easy?

If you are an exceptional student and a good test taker, you should make taking this test your junior year priority. Start preparing in the 10th grade or even the 9th grade by taking the PSAT during those years too…just for practice. Because of the very high rewards for a high test score, students should spend the summer before 11th grade taking an extensive prep course. These are offered through many sources: Teacher conducted group workshops (many of our students take courses where they attend 5 days a week, all day and all summer), online prep courses with video teachers, hard copy prep with one of the many SAT prep books, and the most expensive but perhaps most effective method is using a specialist in SAT prep who works one-on-one at your home with a student. Any of these prep methods requires extensive time for studying. This strategy really kills two birds with one stone. Prepping for PSAT is also prepping for the real SAT.

The junior year is also the most important of all four high school years for admission to college. It is the year that a student can really impress. It is the year that students should take their most difficult curriculum; it is not the senior year that students take the hardest courses!  It is the year that students should be moving into leadership positions in their academic activities and their non-academic extracurricular activities. It is the latest that parents and students should start working on their students’ college admissions.

Advanced College Solutions has seventeen years experience in helping students get into college and helping them find funding to pay for college. This year we already have two students who are semi-finalists for National Merit Scholarships! Do you have a good, hard-working student? Doesn’t your student deserve the best help possible with college prep?  Please contact ACS at (951) 693-2153 or find us on our website at

By Ardeth Meier, Advanced College Solutions