College Planning Timeline

Freshman Year

  • Take a solid course load with challenging courses. Work hard to insure a strong 9th grade academic performance. Freshman grades count in college admissions.
  • Get involved in activities at Thayer Academy or in your residential community.

Sophomore Year

  • Take a solid course load with challenging courses. Work hard to insure a strong 10th grade academic performance. Don’t succumb to “sophomore slump” – a common GPA killer that students come to regret by their senior year.
  • Maintain involvement in extra-curricular activities. Develop your talent and potential for leadership in a few areas while continuing to try new things.
  • Take the PSAT in October.
  • Take appropriate SAT subject tests in May or June (maybe Math IC)
  • Explore possible career interests, if any.
  • In the summer before junior year, visit some colleges (begin with those in the Boston area).

Junior Year

  • Take a solid course load with challenging courses. Work hard to insure a strong 11th grade academic performance. Many colleges look at the junior year as an excellent predictor of a student’s potential for college.
  • Maintain involvement in extra-curricular activities. By now, you should be developing some clear interests (even passions), ones that you might even consider pursuing in college.
  • Take the PSAT in October. This is excellent practice for your first SAT. Take the Practice ACT offered on campus in November so you can decide which test is the best fit for you. 
  • Begin working formally with the College Counseling Office in January. Attend the four college counseling seminars during second semester of junior year.  Meet with college counselors individually. Parents are encouraged to meet with counselors as well.
  • Begin to think about college characteristics that interest you. Attend the college fair at Milton Academy in April to connect with colleges that may fit your preliminary interests. Visit colleges when the opportunity arises (spring break, school holidays, summer months).
  • If interested in playing intercollegiate sports, begin to contact college coaches through email and phone.
  • Register and take standardized tests. SAT offered in March, May, June, and July. ACT offered in Feb, April, and June.
  • Register for and take the SAT Subject Tests as advised in June.
  • Take the AP tests as appropriate in May.

College Planning Sessions

College Planning Presentation for All Parents

Offered every November, this is an opportunity to learn about everything related to college planning, including the college search, course selection, applications, standardized testing, etc.

Junior Workshops

Juniors attend workshops starting in January and continuing through the semester. Workshops cover the college search, standardized testing, timeline, specifics of an application, and resources. Students also gain access to the College Counseling Handbook and begin using Naviance to support their college process efforts.

Individual Meetings

In January of their junior year, students are assigned a college counselor with whom they meet individually to develop a customized college counseling plan.

January Presentation for Parents of Juniors

Parents are included in the college counseling process from the beginning. We discuss the objectives and mechanics of the college search in this first meeting.

Sophomore Workshops

Second semester sophomore year, college counselors conduct seminars with groups of sophomores to introduce them to Naviance, help them explore academic and career options, and highlight what colleges seek in an applicant. We emphasize the importance of taking advantage of academic and extracurricular opportunities at Thayer as a foundation for college preparation.

9th and 10th Grade Outreach

While the formal college counseling process begins in a student’s junior year, we speak with the ninth and tenth grade classes to address the importance of their early work at Thayer. We are also available to meet individually with parents and students to discuss how a student’s choices (academic, extracurricular, etc.) in the Upper School may impact their college goals.

College Admissions Calendar

Senior Year

click here to download

July 2019

Checklist:

  • Visit college campuses if possible.
  • Draft your main college essay (Attend college essay workshops at Thayer if possible).
  • Register for Aug, Sept, Oct, or Nov standardized tests.

July 13: ACT Test Day
July 26: Registration deadline for August SAT

August 2019

Checklist:

  • Visit college campuses if possible.
  • Draft your main college essay (attend college essay workshop at Thayer if possible).
  • Begin work on the Common Application and supplemental essay writing.
  • Register for Sept, Oct, or Nov standardized tests (SAT, ACT, or SAT Subject Tests).

August 1: Common Application is available starting on this day (commonapp.org)
August 15: College essay draft due to your college counselor via email
August 16: Registration deadline for September ACT
August 24: SAT /SAT Subject Test Day

September 2019

Checklist:

  • Meet with college counselor.
  • Decide on Early Decision or Early Action applications.
  • Try to finalize college list and organize application deadlines.
  • Work on college applications.
  • Register for Oct. or Nov. standardized tests (SAT, ACT, or SAT Subject Tests).
  • Attend college representative visits at Thayer. Register in advance in Naviance.
  • Complete the Senior Questionnaire in Naviance for your college counselor.
  • Arrange for Parent Response Forms to be completed & returned to college counselor.
  • Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation at least one month prior to application deadline. Add them to your Naviance account or provide them with the necessary paperwork.

September 6: Registration deadline for October SAT/ SAT Subject Tests
September 10: College Counseling meeting for Grade 12 parents (6 p.m. – Thompson Hall)
September 14: ACT Test Day
September 20: Registration deadline for October ACT

October 2019

Checklist:

  • Work on college applications.
  • In Naviance, move colleges you plan to apply early to over to the active application list (due 2 weeks before app. deadline). Complete FERPA waiver on Common App.
  • Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation one month prior to application deadline. Add them to your Naviance account or give them the necessary paperwork.
  • Take SAT, ACT, or SAT Subject Tests.
  • Register for Nov. and/or Dec. standardized tests (SAT, ACT, or SAT Subject Tests).
  • Send SAT/ACT score reports via testing company to colleges.
  • Attend college representative visits at Thayer. Register in advance on Naviance.
  • Prepare financial aid documents for any early applications if needed (fafsa.ed.gov and www.profileonline.collegeboard.com)
  • Complete Senior Questionnaire in Naviance for your college counselor.
  • Arrange for Parent Response forms to be completed & returned to college counselor.

October 1: Financial Aid applicants can fill out FAFSA and CSS/Profile starting today. (fafsa.ed.gov and css.collegeboard.org)
October 3: Registration deadline for November SAT/ SAT Subject Tests
October 5: SAT / SAT Subject Test Day
October 14: Columbus Day Holiday. Consider visiting a college campus today.
October 16: No school for seniors. Visit a college campus or work on applications at home or at the application workshop in the Brickyard.
October 26: ACT Exam Day

November 2019

Checklist:

  • Submit Early Decision / Early Action applications.
  • Send SAT/ACT score reports via testing company to colleges on college list.
  • Take SAT or SAT Subject Tests.
  • Attend college representative visits at Thayer. Register in advance on Naviance.
  • Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation one month prior to application deadline. Add them to your Naviance account or get them the necessary paperwork.
  • In Naviance, move colleges you plan to apply early to over to the active application list (due 2 weeks before app. deadline). Complete FERPA waiver on Common App. For deadlines over winter break, forms must be logged in by December 13.
  • Complete Student Questionnaire in Naviance for your college counselor.
  • Arrange for Parent Response forms to be completed & returned to college counselor.
  • Prepare financial aid documents if needed (fafsa.ed.gov and profileonline.collegeboard.com)

November 2: SAT / SAT Subject Test Day
November 8: Registration deadline for Dec. SAT/ SAT Subject Tests
November 8: Registration deadline for December ACT
November 11: Veteran’s Day Holiday. Consider visiting a college on this day.

December 2019

Checklist:

  • Decisions arrive for Early Decision and some early action applicants.
  • Take SAT, ACT, or SAT Subject Tests.
  • Complete all applications.
  • Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation one month prior to application deadline. Add them to your Naviance account or give them the necessary paperwork. For deadlines over winter break, forms must be logged in by Dec 13.
  • In Naviance, move colleges you plan to apply to over to the active application list (due 2 weeks before app. deadline). Complete FERPA waiver on Common App.
  • Send SAT/ACT score reports via testing company to colleges on college list.
  • Prepare financial aid documents if needed (fafsa.ed.gov and profileonline.collegeboard.com)

December 7: SAT Reasoning/SAT Subject Test Day
December 13: College applications due over break must be logged in by this date
December 14: ACT Testing Date

January 2020

Checklist:

  • Submit remaining applications.
  • In Naviance, move colleges you plan to apply to over to the active application list (due 2 weeks before app. deadline). Complete FERPA waiver on Common App.
  • Send SAT/ACT score reports to any remaining colleges.
  • Submit financial aid forms. Complete the FAFSA online at fafsa.ed.gov; complete the CSS/PROFILE, if required by colleges on your list, at profileonline.collegeboard.com.
  • Respond to an Early Decision acceptance if applicable.
  • Contact colleges (via internet or phone) to make sure your applications are complete and that online applications have been received.
February and March 2020

Checklist:

  • Provide additional information to colleges as requested.
  • Receive admission decisions and communicate them to your college counselor.
  • Wait patiently and think about options.
  • Visit colleges as necessary.
  • Contact financial aid offices to make sure all necessary forms are received.

March 14-29: Spring Break. Visit colleges if necessary.

April 2020

Checklist:

  • Receive admission decisions and communicate with your college counselor.
  • Think through options.
  • Visit colleges if necessary.
  • Make final decision.

April 20: Patriots Day Holiday. Consider visiting a college campus today.

May 2020

May 1: Acceptance / deposit due at the college of your choice.

June 2020

June 6: Thayer Commencement. Congratulations!

Notes:

  1. Many of the dates above represent the deadline (last possible date). Plan ahead and act early!
  2. It is the responsibility of the student to understand the test requirements of the colleges to which they are applying.
  3. Thayer is not a testing site for the SAT, SAT Subject Test, or ACT.

Junior Year

Coming soon!