College! You can go... Here’s how

Dr Harris at OSU 2010

College... From Dreams to Reality

"You may not have been as fortunate as I was to have found your life's dream at an early age. Maybe you have yet to find it. But you never will if you do not take the steps of self-discovery, and those steps begin with your dreams. Dreams are the reality of the future. Without dreams, there is not future." Dr. Bernard A. Harris, Jr.

There is an old saying of unknown origin which says, "If you fail to plan, you plan to fail." There are many on-line programs that help persons of all ages attend college at two or four year institutions. Our web site will help you access important resources so you can make your dream of attending college a reality. It will take time to work through these resources. It is time well invested in your potential to make a difference in the world.

College Planning Timeline and Resources

There is a great planning timeline resource for high school students at College.com's College admission road map http://www.colleges.com/admissions/roadmap. The timeline has monthly benchmarks for Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors to navigate the tests, grant and scholarship deadlines and application processes to help you go to college.

For example, if you are entering your Junior year, in September you should

  1. Meet with your high-school counselor to plan your classes and to plan for your senior year. Ask about test dates for the PSAT and PLAN in October.
  2. Begin investigating financial aid

The links in each entry will take you to more important information. In this case a page explaining the PSAT and financial aid.

High School Classes to Take

While you are in High School you need to take classes that will assist you to be admitted to college. The Oregon Student Assistance Commission's web site has a page to help you stay on track in High school- see http://www.getcollegefunds.org/pc_hs_academic.html.

College Admission Tests to Take

Are you confused by the "alphabet soup" of test names such as PSAT/NMSQT, SAT, AP, ACT and TOELF? This link will help you understand the tests you must take to apply to colleges and others you may choose to take - http://www.colleges.com/admissions/testprep/index.html

Scholarships, Grants and Financial Aid

There are many resources available to help you find scholarships, grants and financial aid to finance your college education.  Most students start with the federal financial aid form called FAFSA. Click here for additional resources

Choosing College Majors and Careers

Another excellent resource at http://www.oregonopportunities.gov/choosing.html provides links to:

  • Choosing a College
  • Finding Career Paths that Match Your Skills
  • Oregon Job Outlook by Occupation
  • National Job Outlook by Occupation

Community Colleges

Oregon has many excellent community colleges located across the state. This can be an excellent way to begin your degree work at a lower cost or explore options if you are not sure of your career path. This link will help you explore community colleges and universities across Oregon - http://www.oregonopportunities.gov/applying.html

Oregon Universities

The Oregon University System's seven universities and centers offer a diversity of experiences and environments to students interested in degree programs or higher education courses. Wherever you live in Oregon, there is a campus, center or distance learning opportunity available to meet your specific needs.

Mentoring

Click the link to ASPIRE to see if you are in a community with an ASPIRE School. Even if you are not, you can click the link for Students and Families and explore their resources. Click the Especially for Parents and Families link for a college planning timeline.

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