Counseling Counseling Staff Enroll/Withdraw College Prep Career Options Seniors

College Admission Requirements

College Planning Timeline

Freshman Year

Choose high school courses carefully. Familiarize yourself with graduation and college admissions requirements. Become involved in extra curricular activities. Keep a written record of activities. Keep your grades up! You are beginning to compile a record that is called a transcript. A transcript is a record of all classes that you attempt in high school. The final grade is recorded on the transcript and a grade point average is calculated based on your performance in each class. This will begin your academic record that will be forwarded to colleges as you apply during your senior year.

Sophomore Year

Fall - Choose high school courses carefully. Be sure you are familiar with high school course requirements for graduation and for college admissions. Check with your counselor or go to the Mauldin High School website. (link to graduation requirements)(link to college admissions)
Take the PSAT in October. This will serve as a practice for next year’s PSAT which may qualify you for National Merit recognition and possible scholarships. Your counselor should provide sign up information.
Continue participation in extra curricular activities. Keep written records. Consider volunteer activities, and leadership positions.

Spring - Find information regarding career choices and possibilities. Check with your counselor or visit the Mauldin High School website. (link to career information)
Register for your junior year courses carefully with the help of your counselor and teachers.

Junior Year

Fall - Begin the college exploration process. Identify what you are looking for in a college. On a sheet of paper list your strengths and weaknesses, interests and needs. Consider the following when looking for a college: intended college major, city size, 2 or 4 year college, student body size, religious affiliation, special services, public or private, state, athletics, disabilities. Several resources may help you find a college. Check out the Mauldin High School website with direct links to college search engines.

Continue career exploration. Interview, observe or volunteer in career fields you like the most.

Take the PSAT. This test is given only once each year in October. This preliminary exam to the SAT also serves as the National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. National Merit Scholarship consideration is only given to juniors who take the PSAT. Your counselor will provide sign up procedures and deadlines. Juniors must pay to take the PSAT.

Attend any College Fair available in your area.

Spring - Meet with your counselor to come up with an initial list of colleges for further investigation.

Begin writing colleges for general information and/or catalogs. You may also find a wealth of information on the individual college website. Refer to the Mauldin High School website for direct links to individual college websites. Compare and contrast the similarities and differences in the colleges and chart your findings.

Make initial visits to colleges of interest. Make an appointment with the college first. Be sure to follow the Mauldin High School procedures for taking a college day. Refer to the student handbook and check in the attendance office.

In March or May take the SAT and or the ACT and request the scores be forwarded to at least three colleges. Registration bulletins are available in the guidance area. The bulletins provide the mail in registration form, test dates and registration deadlines. Students complete the registration form and mail it in directly along with the test fee. This information is also available on the Mauldin High School website. Students may register online. Remember that Mauldin’s High School code is 411363.

Plan your senior year schedule carefully. Be sure that you are taking the courses needed for graduation and college admissions. Take challenging courses above the minimum requirements if possible. Allow your parents, teachers and counselor to help.

Continue extra curricular activities, maintaining accurate records. Keep a list of honors and awards you receive.

Summer - Visit additional colleges during the summer vacation.

Make a resume, which summarizes your extra curricular activities, honors and awards. Save this on your computer so you may add information during your senior year. You may need this information for your college and scholarship applications that you complete during the fall of your senior year.

Prepare a personal essay summarizing your qualifications for college and scholarship consideration. Write about why a college should accept you or why you should be considered for a scholarship. Make this a generic essay that you may alter as needed when you begin the college and scholarship application process during your senior year.

Senior Year

Fall - Finalize your list of colleges. Do not allow cost to prevent you from applying to any school in which you are interested. You may be surprised at the financial aid package the college may work up for you.

Attend any College Fair available in your area.

Make college visits to help narrow your choices. Be sure to make an appointment with the college.

Submit admissions applications to the colleges of your choice. (On average, students apply to three different schools.) Applications are available online. Be sure to follow the procedures outlined by your counselor for submitting college applications. Many applications will require a list of activities, honors and awards. Use your resume that you prepared during your summer vacation. You may submit this list even if the college does not ask for it, unless there are specific instruction not to do so. You may also be required to submit an essay. Refine the essay that you began during the summer to adhere to the particular college requirements as noted in the college application.

Retake the SAT or ACT if appropriate. Registration materials are available online.

Apply for available scholarships. Ask your counselor for scholarship information. Visit the Mauldin High School website for direct links to scholarship search engines. Remember that the best source of financial aid and scholarships is the college you plan to attend. Do not hesitate to contact the scholarship and financial aid office at the college of your choice.

Attend financial aid workshops.

If you are applying for financial aid, complete the Free Application For Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). FAFSA forms may be completed online. FAFSA can not be submitted prior to October. By completing this one form, it will be determined if you qualify for any federal grant or loan program as well as the SC Tuition Grant for private schools or the SC Need Based Grant. Also complete any college financial aid form if required. Check all deadlines.

Spring - Wait for admissions responses. Respond to offers of admission. Notify the college you plan to attend as well as those to which you were accepted but will not attend. Send in required deposits, housing contracts, medical forms or other requested information.
Maintain a list of all financial aid and scholarship offers. This information is required for a School District of Greenville County scholarship report. Your counselor will request this information from you before you graduate.

Arrange for a final transcript to be sent to the college of your choice. Follow the procedures as outlined by your guidance counselor.

Making the Best of College Visits

Important Questions For Admission Counselors

WHO attends the college or university?

  • Ask about special characteristics (Gender, Race, Religion, and Total Population). You want to make sure that the college or university of choice is a good fit to your academic, cultural, personal, religious, and social needs.

WHAT are the admission criteria?

  • Ask about college admission requirements (GPA, test scores, high school courses, etc.)
  • Ask guidance for accurate class rank and GPA information.
  • Ask for special admission criteria for academic majors and honors college programs etc.

WHEN should I apply?

  • Ask for application deadlines and fee waivers. Several recruiters are allowed to waive application fees upon request.

WHERE do I call for specific department and/or major information?

Housing – Explore housing accommodations and criteria. 
  • Is housing provided?
  • Is there a separate application/deposit?
  • Are students in same sex or co-ed dormitories?
  • Financial Aid – Seek the assistance of the college/university financial aid counselor for additional assistance and information.
Student Activities – Stay actively involved.
  • Explore opportunities to participate in extra-curricular activities: athletics, Greek life, student government, etc. Future employers look favorably upon this for employment and internship opportunities.
Personal/Group Tours – Visit the campus before making your final decision.
  • Ask for tour information (registration procedures, tour dates, overnight accommodations, etc.)

HOW much is the cost of attendance?

  • Review the annual cost of attendance (tuition/fees, room/board, books/supplies, personal expense, travel, etc.).
  • Ask financial aid counselors for available financial assistance (scholarships, grants, loans, etc.)

WHY should I attend your institution?

  • Ask about special department/major program admission criteria. These may include programs for ethnic minorities, gender, socioeconomic status, or other special populations and circumstances.
  • What are your most popular majors?
  • What is the average graduation rate?
  • What is the average employment and placement rate?
    Is a career center available to help with employment and internship opportunities?
  • How much technology is available for student use on your campus? (Computers, lap-tops, telephones, etc.)

Test & Registration Dates

SAT Test Dates & Information

**Register for the SAT online

Services for Students with Disabilities: In limited cases, students with disabilities may receive special testing accommodations. Students with a 504 plan or an IEP may or may not meet criteria for special services. Please review the college board website and see your counselor for more information. It is the student’s/parent’s responsibility to request accommodations that meet the specific criteria set by the college board through the school’s SSD coordinator.

SAT Links

Remember that Mauldin High School’s Code is 411363.

ACT Test Dates & Information

**Register for the ACT online

In limited cases, students with disabilities may receive special testing accommodations. Students with a 504 plan or an IEP may or may not meet criteria for special services. Please review the ACT website and see your counselor for more information. It is the student’s/parent’s responsibility to request accommodations that meet the specific criteria set by the ACT through the school’s SSD coordinator.

ACT Links

Additional Resources

Scholarship Search Links

SC Financial Aid Resources

  • Scholarships and Grants for SC Residents (Palmetto Fellows, Life, Hope)

NCAA Eligibility Center