TCM is OPEN, Class of 2021 checklist, August SAT Subject Tests, College Searches and more!

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Hello, The College Map!

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The College Map office is OPEN

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The College Map re-opened on Monday, June 1st. We are adhering to the guidelines and protocol set forth by Orlando Health regarding mask wearing, hand washing, social distancing, surface cleaning, and screening (no-contact thermometer) and the Phase 2 guidelines provided by the State of Florida Health Department.

Our hours will be limited to scheduled one-on-one college planning appointments. Counselors will work with their students to schedule appointments within these parameters throughout the summer. Please know that we will continue to offer virtual meetings to those students who have high risk family members and do not feel comfortable coming into the office.

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Summer Hours 2

The College Map will be closed every Saturday in June and July and Friday, July 3rd - Friday, July 10th

Summer Hours and Important Dates

Saturdays in June and July:
CLOSED

Friday, July 3rd - Friday, July 10th:
CLOSED. Happy Independence Day!

Thursday, July 9th:
UNF Apply in July Event.

Rising Senior Boot Camp: Monday, August 3rd - Thursday, August 6th from 10am-6pm.

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Due to the cancelation of the May and June SAT exams, many students were not able to sit for their SAT Subject Tests. Please remember to re-schedule those exams for August! Subject Tests will not be offered in September.

Subject tests are subject specific college admissions exams. They are designed by the same company (College Board) that publishes the SAT and AP exams. There are twenty different subject tests available in the areas of English, Math, Science, and foreign language. They are one hour long multiple choice tests that are given on the dates that the SAT is given- but, not all twenty tests are offered on the same date. Here is a list of updated colleges requiring SAT Subject Tests.

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As you conduct virtual colleges this summer, try to ask yourself this question for each school:

"Why do I want to attend THIS college?"

Can you provide a compelling answer you could share in an essay or when talking with a college rep?

If you can't answer that question, then why is that college on your list? Do you need to investigate further?

If you CAN answer the question, CONGRATULATIONS! Research everything you can about their admission requirements. Your TCM counselor will work with you on coding and timelines!

We are recommending that all of our TCM students use the College Visit Search and Scavenger Hunt worksheets under files in your CPP accounts. Let these worksheets help guide you to answer some of these questions and since you are unable to ask a question in person during a tour, please follow up your virtual visit with a phone call or email to an admissions counselor.

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Seniors!

Here are couple of things you need to be working to prepare for your scheduled Senior Boot Camp starting on Monday, August 3rd - Thursday, August 6th. We will start every morning at 10am and work through 6pm.

A copy of your most recent transcript and check it for accuracy
Passwords to your SAT and/or ACT accounts
Know your Social Security Number
Have your parent’s driver’s license information
Have your parent’s voter registration information
Have your parent’s vehicle registration information
Make sure your resume is 100% complete before Boot Camp
Have access to College Planner Pro to view your college list, deadlines, passwords, and resumes.

As you see below, you're already received instructions on how to proceed with your essays.

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College planning seniors who attended a recent essay workshop: your introductory ("hook") paragraph will be due via Google docs by Friday, June 12th to your essay counselor. Please be sure to grant her editing (not just viewing) capabilities via Google docs. She will comment on, and provide edits to your first paragraph. After it is approved, you will move forward with writing a rough draft of your essay that will be edited and finalized during Boot Camp (the week of August 3rd).

Essay counselor assignments....

If your college planning counselor is Ms. Barb, Ms. Grace is your essay counselor. Her email is gracebrown@thecollegemap.com.

If your college planning counselor is Ms. Jen or Ms. Andrea, Ms. Jen is your essay counselor. Her email is jenniferetscorn@thecollegemap.com.

If your college planning counselor is Ms. Julie or Ms. Jacqueline, Ms. Julie is your essay counselor. Her email is juliemitchell@thecollegemap.com.

If your college planner is Ms. Kelly or Ms. Maria, your essay counselor is Ms. Kelly. Her email is kellybrandes@thecollegemap.com.

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Seniors in our College Planning program:

Your junior year grades should officially be finalized and processed on your transcript by mid June.

Please order an unofficial copy from your school. We need to verify the transcript for accuracy over the summer to give a head-start on any possible corrections that need to be made.

Remember: you'll be sending official transcripts to each college you apply to; it's imperative that they be accurate and updated prior to that time.

Note: We will check it one final time before you send the official copies to colleges (that particular version must have your senior year schedule on it, which usually happens in September of your senior year).

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Juniors (Class of 2021)...., if you recently took the ACT/SAT diagnostic assessment, please plan to attend one of the following post-diagnostic meetings and test prep planning meetings. You will receive your diagnostic results and you will learn about the next steps in your test prep journey with us. Students and parents are encouraged to attend. Please email Julie Mitchell at juliemitchell@thecollegemap.com to r.s.v.p. Please choose one of the following dates:

June 16th @ 5:00 p.m.
June 17th @ 5:00 p.m.
June 18th @ 5:00 p.m.
June 30th @ 5:00 p.m.
July 1st @ 5:00 p.m.
July 2nd @ 5:00 p.m.
July 14th @ 5:00 p.m.
July 15th @ 5:00 p.m.
July 16th @ 5:00 p.m.

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Every year, more than 160,000 high school students apply to receive accommodations on the SAT; more than 85% of those requests are granted. Even with the high odds of approval, navigating the application process can still be rather intimidating. To assist parents of students with IEPs and 504 Service Agreements, we have put together a comprehensive Q&A that should give you a firm grasp of the entire standardized testing accommodation landscape.

In this article, by College Transitions, the team will cover:

Which disability categories qualify a students for SAT/ACT accommodations
What types of accommodations are allowable on the SAT/ACT
When you should start the process of applying for accommodations
What documentation you need in order to procure accommodations on the SAT
What documentation you need in order to procure accommodations on the ACT
How much extended time you can receive on the SAT and ACT
How to decide whether or not to seek accommodations on the SAT/ACT
Let’s begin by examining what types of disabilities can qualify a student for standardized testing accommodations.

What types of disability categories can qualify for accommodations?

Students may qualify for standardized testing accommodations if they have been diagnosed with any of the following:

Specific Learning Disability
ADHD
A Psychiatric Disorder such as a Mood or Anxiety Disorder
Visual Impairment
Hearing Impairment
Executive Functioning Disorder
Autism
Traumatic Brain Injury
Speech and Language Disorder
Medical Condition
Tic Disorders/Tourette’s
Physical Disabilities
What types of accommodations are offered on standardized tests?

Typically, students will already have school-based supports via IEPs or 504 Service Agreements in place prior to applying for accommodations on a standardized test. Extended time is far and away the most commonly granted accommodation on the SAT and ACT (as it often is in IEPs and 504s). This can come in a few different forms as we’ll see in a later section. Examples of other accommodations include:

Enlarged answer sheet for those with visual or fine motor skills challenges
Small group setting for students with ADHD to help to reduce distractions
Extra breaks for students with conditions such as diabetes
Use of computer for students with dysgraphia or a physical disability
Audio test for students with severe learning disabilities
Large print test for students with visual impairments
Use of four-function calculator for students with a learning disability in mathematics
Note that modifications such as reducing the number of test questions, answer choices, or level of rigor of the test are not allowable in any circumstances. This can sometimes come as a surprise to some parents and students who have specially designed instruction in their IEPs to this effect.

When should I apply for accommodations on the SAT or ACT?

The College Board recommends submitting your application at least seven weeks prior to the examination date. If you are planning on sitting for the upcoming October test, ask your guidance counselor to submit all necessary forms before students and staff leave in June. The ACT sets a more optimistic turnaround time of just two weeks but it is still wise to take care of everything a month out, just in case you hit any snags.

SAT – How to get approved for accommodations

Typically an online submission will be made by a student’s guidance counselor to the College Board’s Services for Students with Disabilities (SSD), although the option also exists to submit the application yourself, without the assistance of school personnel. Documentation in the form and a reevaluation and IEP/504 should lead to “automatic approval,” a policy the company adopted in 2017 that automatically grants accommodations that are already part of a student’s school-based educational plan.

However, the level of documentation required by the College Board varies by disability category. For example, an ADHD diagnosis must be made by a medical or psychological professional based on the DSM-V and the report should be no more than five years old. If the basis for seeking accommodations is a psychiatric condition, a current psychiatric update no more than one year old is required. Once you’ve been approved by the College Board for accommodations on the PSAT or SAT, you will receive a seven-digit code that will be reusable on future test dates as well as for AP tests which are administered by the same company.

ACT – How to get approved for accommodations

Like the College Board, the ACT recently revamped their application procedure to simplify the process and ensure that more students receive the accommodations that their school team has already put in place. As such, they will want to see the accommodation pages from the student’s most recent IEP or 504 Service Agreement. Submissions are made through the organization’s Test Accessibility and Accommodations website.

For students citing an ADHD diagnosis, the ACT wants to see documentation of the condition prior to age 12. This is because it is widely known that some parents try to get their children this diagnosis in late-middle or high school solely to get extended time on college entrance exams. As with the SAT, documentation required on the ACT differs depending on the disability category. Students with learning disabilities will need to submit cognitive testing while those with a visual impairment would need to submit documentation from an ophthalmologist or other medical professional.

How much extended time do I get on the SAT?

On the SAT, the menu of extended time options is as follows:

50% additional time for the SAT is 4 hours and 30 minutes without the essay, and 5 hours and 45 minutes for the SAT essay
100% percent additional time is 6 hours on the new SAT without the essay, and 7 hours and 40 minutes for the SAT with essay
150 percent additional time (this is only granted in rare cases) is 7 hours and 30 minutes on the SAT; 9 hours and 35 minutes on the SAT with essay
Keep in mind that the typical amount of allotted time for the exam is 3 hours of actual testing time without the essay and 3 hours and 50 minutes with the essay.

How much extended time do I get on the ACT?

All exam-takers granted this accommodation will be provided 50% extended time for each section of the ACT. As of 2018, test-takers will no longer have to self-pace through the four multiple choice sections over the allotted 5 hours. The breakdown by section is as follows:

70 minutes to complete English
90 minutes to complete Mathematics
55 minutes to complete Reading
55 minutes to complete Science
60 minutes to respond to complete Writing (optional)
This total amount of exam time for those with the 50% extension is five hours without the essay and six hours with the essay. Without extended time the test takes 2 hours and 55 minutes without the essay and 3 hours and 335 minutes with the essay.

Deciding whether to pursue accommodations on the SAT or ACT

There are a few pervasive myths about this process that need to be dispelled so you can make your decision with all facts in clear view. Here are some helpful truths: 1) Colleges cannot see whether or not you took a given test with accommodations—all they will see is the final score. 2) You do need to stay for the entirety of the extended time you are granted. It’s a long enough day without extended time—with it, the day is going to be a true marathon. Those that truly need the time will benefit greatly but those who do not may find the whole process draining which can lead to suboptimal results. 3) It is not more difficult to get approved for accommodations on the ACT than on the SAT. While this was once the case, both companies today have equally friendly processes. Therefore, you should pick the test you feel better suits your skills and not let the perceived ease of receiving accommodations be a factor in your decision-making.

Hopefully you now you possess all of the requisite knowledge to make an informed choice about whether or not to pursue extended time or other standardized testing accommodations. Bottom line: If you are a student with a disability who is aiming for admission into competitive colleges down the road, accommodations are absolutely worth pursuing on the SAT and ACT.

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Save the Date! Our annual Financial Aid and Scholarship Meeting will be held on Saturday, August 29th at 10:00am. We strongly recommend attending this meeting and we have specifically scheduled it prior to FAFSA opening. This is your chance to learn more about applying for the various forms of financial aid!

This event is only for families enrolled in our College Planning services.

Want to get a head-start on your scholarship search? Visit "Your Path" and click on the Financial Aid tab for some helpful links.

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Greetings from the University of North Florida!

I hope you are having a wonderful semester! I wanted to reach out before the school year ends to inform you of some exciting information about UNF:
Our application opens for the Class of 2020 on June 1, 2020.
On and after June 1st, students can apply online here:

Apply in July - Lake Mary
Thursday, July 9, 2020
11:00 AM - 1:00 PM

We are bringing UNF and the admissions team to you! Apply in July is an excellent opportunity to learn more about your academic area of interest, hear from current students and meet staff from the Office of Admissions at the University of North Florida. To receive an admissions decision on the spot, please submit the appropriate documentation prior to the Apply in July in your Central Florida.

If you have any questions, or would like more information, please reach out to the Office of Admissions at admissions@unf.edu or (904) 620-2420.

Event location:
Orlando Marriott Lake Mary
1501 International Parkway
Lake Mary, FL, 32746

Please register here for this event!

If your students are planning to participate in the Apply in July events, make sure they submit the application on our website, and not the Common Application as this will not open until August.

In addition, we will be unable to accept the SSAR for the Apply in July events and instead will need their high school transcripts sent electronically or through the mail.

Students are able to schedule a virtual tour of campus, please visit at: https://tour.unf.edu/

If you have any questions about Apply In July to UNF, please reach out to your College Map Counselor!

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COVID-19 Question on 2020-2021 Common App

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The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the lives and postsecondary plans for many students. We want to reduce anxiety for applicants affected by these events and provide them with a way to share their experience with colleges and universities.

Next year, on the 2020-2021 application, Common App will provide students who need it with a dedicated space to elaborate on the impact of the pandemic, both personally and academically. We want to provide colleges with the information they need, with the goal of having students answer COVID-19 questions only once while using the rest of the application as they would have before to share their interests and perspectives beyond COVID-19.

Below is the question applicants will see:

Community disruptions such as COVID-19 and natural disasters can have deep and long-lasting impacts. If you need it, this space is yours to describe those impacts. Colleges care about the effects on your health and well-being, safety, family circumstances, future plans, and education, including access to reliable technology and quiet study spaces.

Do you wish to share anything on this topic? Y/N
Please use this space to describe how these events have impacted you.
The question will be optional and will appear in the Additional Information section of the application.The response length will be limited to 250 words.

The question will be accompanied by a more detailed FAQ to help students consider the kinds of impacts they may wish to report, including illness and loss, housing and employment disruptions, and shifting family obligations.

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Below is a great link to over 900 colleges/universities with links to virtual tours and unique features of each school all in one place. This is a great one-stop shop for our students, specifically our juniors who may not be able to visit colleges in person in the coming months and to seniors still trying to make a decision.

Please click HERE

Road Trip to College runs through the month of June 2020
https://www.roadtriptocollege.org/

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Here is a great resource for students struggling with foreign languages online.

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Bright Futures

Seniors, please make sure you submit a completed Florida Financial Aid Application (FFAA) in order to be considered for State Scholarship & Grant Programs. Seniors, please Create a Student Account. After logging into your account, you may proceed to complete the FFAA. Even IF you are not attending an in-state Florida school, we highly recommend every senior complete their Bright Futures application. Florida graduates have two years to enact their scholarship money.

The Bright Futures link can answer all of your questions:

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Scholarships

There are thousands of scholarships out there. Below you will find many scholarships, most with general eligibility requirements.

Click here for DoSomething.org Monthly Scholarships!

Click here for Monthly Scholarships!

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Website Password

Our private "Your Path" page contains details for upcoming deadlines, events, and important announcements. We encourage you to check it regularly! The password is case-sensitive:
prepare@TCM2020

Suggestions?

Is there something you'd like to see in our newsletter? An event you'd like us to host? A friend you'd like to refer? Let us know by simply replying to this message.

Kind regards,

Your Team at The College Map

 
By |2020-06-15T21:13:33-04:00June 15th, 2020|Your Path|0 Comments