While planning for college, knowing what to do is a great place to start, but just as important is knowing when to take action. Supported by the three pillars of college planning, our College Timeline provides a month-to-month breakdown of your family’s financial, academic and career readiness needs.
Worried about how to fund your child’s college? You’re not alone. We have months dedicated to helping you discover new ways to save during each year of high school. Need to boost your child’s academic credentials for admission and scholarships? We’ll fill you in how to polish your child’s admission applications and stand out. What about life after college? Prepare your child for career success with professional planning insight.
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By planning in your child’s first year of high school you can build long-term plans that become simpler as you’re able to anticipate future academic trends by observing them in real-time. Although Online College Planning provides a variety of services and resources for each student here we have focused on what you need as your child embarks on their journey through high school.
As a freshman, long-standing interests can be either reinforced or diversified as your child transitions into a new phase of their life. At the beginning of this 4-year phase, all of the possibilities present can appear very overwhelming. However, with the proper planning, you can begin to develop a sensible and flexible roadmap.
Freshman Timeline Topics [simple_tooltip content=’
- August – Scholarships
- September – High School Curriculum
- October – College Funding
- November – First College Visit
- December – Advanced Placement (AP) vs. High Grade Point Average (GPA)
- January – Calendar/Resume
- February – Volunteering
- March – Summer Jobs
- April – Career Exploration
- May – Scholarship
- June – Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Planning
- July – National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA)/National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA)
By planning during Sophomore year, parents can continue to help their students prepare themselves for attending the college of their first-choice college. Also, it’s never too late to map out finances and build a solid blueprint for college admittance.
It’s year two, and your child is slowly growing into their future adult self. Each academic accomplishment and commitment fulfilled act as landmarks leading to their later success. However, more planning is absolutely necessary to ensure that they remain on track. Online College Planning can meet you at this intermediary point and guide your student to take even more positive steps to the career path of their dreams. We have the tools and resources to keep the momentum going.
Sophomore Timeline Topics
- August – Preliminary Scholastic Aptitude Test (PSAT)
- September – College Fairs
- October – Scholarships, Private Scholarships, and Athletic Scholarships
- November – Base Year Prep and Graduation Assurance
- December – Expected Family Contribution (EFC) Optimization and Resource Identification
- January – College Comparison Made Easy
- February – College Visits (Score sheets & Questions)
- March – Advanced Placement (AP) Exams
- April – Career Shadowing
- May – American College Testing (ACT)/Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) Prep and Master
- June – Free Resources
- July – Military Academy & Reserve Officers’ Training Corps. (ROTC) Options
By planning during Junior year, parents can develop an understanding of what potential colleges and scholarships to apply to, incorporating these elements and test preparation for their child’s academic career.
It’s Junior Year, and your child is steadily moving toward that last step in their high school career. All the decisions that your child has made up until now are all taking shape, culminating in the foundation for their college experience. Typically, during this time, your child’s aptitude will be tested in a variety of formats. As a result, this period can challenge parents as they plan to meet the demands of helping their children keep up with curriculum while preparing for testing.
Junior Timeline Topics[simple_tooltip content=’
- August – C3 Sports
- September – The 4-Year Forecast
- October – Demonstrated Interest
- November – Merit Max
- December – The College Planning Report
- January – Career Inventory and Education
- February – College Discovery (Reverse Engineered)
- March – Essay Writing
- April – Alternative Summer Jobs and Interning
- May – Common Application and College Search Camp
- June – Job and Career Fairs – Early Action & Decision
- July – The School Lineup: 2 Safe, 3 Strong, 2 Stretch
By planning during Senior year, parents can get a head start on preparing for the financial demands of their child’s college career. Further, our planning professionals can help you explore all of your child’s financial aid opportunities, including FASFA repeals.
The time you have been waiting for is swiftly approaching, but there is still more planning to be done. Senior year marks the last chapter in your child’s high school career, opening more doors and opportunities for future success. It’s never too late to start planning, and we provide you with the insight to improve the chances that you choose the right school that meets your students financial and academic needs. Also, Online College Planning offers several resources for test taking and admissions essays.
Senior Timeline Topics
- August – Common Application and Letters of Recommendation
- September – The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) Assist
- October – Gap Year, Overlap Years, etc.
- November – Understanding True Costs
- December – Award Letter Evaluation
- January – Visit
- February – Appeals: When, How, Why, to Whom?
- March – Budgets, Deposits, Financial
- April – Student Bank Accounts, Loans, and Credit Cards
- May – College-Level Examination Program (CLEP)
- June – The Final Countdown!
- July – Congratulations