While you don’t want to start applying for Financial Aid at this point, there are many things you need to start crossing off your checklist. Below are some crucial steps that you don’t want to miss during your sophomore year.

  • Meet with your guidance counselor. You should make a habit of meeting with your guidance counselor at least once a year. They are a wealth of information! Share with them your thoughts about college, and ask them to help you along every step of the way. They may be able to provide you with resources about different colleges, and they will make sure you don’t miss any crucial classes.

  • Speaking of classes-plan your classes wisely! There are certain classes that must be completed in high school in order to graduate. Make sure you are on the right track. Also, talk to your guidance counselor about getting into more challenging classes, such as AP or honors classes. These classes will look great on a transcript. Continue to push yourself. Do the best you can all year long!

  • Continue to explore career options.  Make a list of the careers that you think you would love to pursue. If at all possible, try to shadow a person in this field to see if it is right for you. Remember, you won’t be cheating on your favorite profession by exploring others. Keep your mind open and get as educated about your options as possible.

  • Start exploring schools. Once again, there are countless possibilities. Get familiar with admission requirements and what the school would have to offer you. Start to keep a list of your top schools. Go see you guidance counselor and talk to them about your options. They may be able to provide you with additional resources for the exploration process.

  • Get involved in extracurricular activities. Think sports, clubs, volunteer work. Take this time to develop your leadership skills. These decisions could possibly help you get accepted to the school of your choice (once you eventually make that decision, that is). It can also help you qualify for more scholarships.

  • Study, study, study!!! Colleges will look at your grades. You need to make sure you do your absolute best in all your classes.