Your junior year is a very important year. This is the year you prepare yourself for the college selection and application processes and the search for financial aid that will be central to your senior year. If you put off too much this preparation process until your senior year, your senior year may well become a year of great, and often overwhelming, stress If you haven't yet developed the traits of organization and focus, this is a great time to start.
This is also the year wherein you will be involved with a great deal of standardized testing. You will take the PSAT in the fall, and most of you will take the SAT and/or ACT tests in the Spring
You will be addressing a variety of different topics this year; narrowing own your career choices, choosing a college, applying to a college, finding scholarships and taking tests. All of these topics are related to your going to college.
An order exists to this "to do" list; For instance, you will not be real sure what to study unless you have established at least tentative career goals. With established career goals you can pick a major and look for colleges that offer that major. Which scholarships you apply for will often depend on your major, or even your school.
The tasks you must undertake as a junior, in rough sequence are:
- Get to know yourself. What is it you want to pursue as a career? What do you want to study? Think about your goals and values.
- What kind of a college or school do you want to attend for post secondary study?
- Research Colleges
- Visit Colleges
- Research Scholarships
- Take standardized college entrance exams
- Narrow your list of potential colleges.
You may not be able to make final decisions about many of these things until your senior year. But, if you have done some diligent preparation your junior year, your senior year will be much easier.
So, first-things-first, work early on on choosing a career, if you have not already done so. It gives you a starting point. You can always change your mind, and you probably will - several times. But one must start somewhere.