Identifying Your Teen’s Greatest Strengths

Identifying Your Teen’s Greatest Strengths

Teenagers are almost halfway through summer break. For rising seniors, it's time to start preparing for college applications if that's their plan. While most applications are due in January or February, some colleges have early deadlines in October. The one thing college-bound teens should not put off is writing their application essays. College admissions officers say it takes an average of two months to write an essay from start to finish. October sounds like a long way off, but the time to...

Post-High School Planning: What Your Teen Needs to Do Now

Post-High School Planning: What Your Teen Needs to Do Now

I was recently a featured speaker at the Georgia PTA Conference. My presentation addressed ways to handle post-high school planning without becoming overwhelmed. An excellent way to tackle planning is to spread out tasks throughout each grade of high school. And one of the best times to do this work is during summer break when your teen does not have the stress of school, homework, or extracurricular activities. Share these summer post-high school planning activities with your student:...

Helping Teens Use Social Media to Their Advantage

Helping Teens Use Social Media to Their Advantage

Using social media platforms like Instagram, TikTok, and Facebook, teens can interact and share their lives instantly by posting status updates, videos, and photos. They view these platforms as essential tools for social connection and self-expression. But social media can be a slippery slope. Teens can easily make mistakes in sharing or commenting that can reflect negatively on them. How can teenagers use social media platforms to stand out in a good way, especially to college recruiters and...

Helping Your Teen Hone Their Interview Skills

Helping Your Teen Hone Their Interview Skills

Lately, I've shared a lot of networking tips for teens and the importance of crafting a high school resume. If you missed those articles, check them out here. The next step for students is to prepare for the big interview. Keep in mind that interviews are not only for jobs but for internships, college admissions, and scholarships.  Here are some tips to share with your teen on how to prepare for an interview: Research the company, college, or scholarship - identify their mission or purpose and...

Summer Career Exploration Options for Teens

Summer Career Exploration Options for Teens

Our kids are on the downward slope of this school year. Summer break will be here before we know it, and NOW is the time to start planning. Hopefully, your summer will include some fun family activities. Summer break can also be an excellent time for your teen to explore career interests. There are various ways your teen can explore different careers over the summer. Some options are:  Volunteer - for example, if they have an interest in working with animals, they can volunteer at a local...

How to Assess Colleges Effectively

How to Assess Colleges Effectively

You and your teen have taken every step to research colleges - - you made a list, took campus tours, sat in on some classes, and asked all kinds of questions. It's now time for your teen to decide where to apply.  Parents often ask, how many college applications should my teen submit. Five to eight schools is a good range, though there is no magic number. Applying to fewer colleges is okay too. Don't waste your time and money applying to schools that aren't a good fit for your kid or don't...

The Most Important Investment for Your Teen

The Most Important Investment for Your Teen

I was chatting with parents who are thinking of having me help their son, Sean. He is a senior in high school and has no firm plans on what to do after graduation. Currently, he is thinking of applying to college because his friends are. He would get a business degree because that is a good "general' degree. Sean is also considering going to trade school.  Sean's parents feel anxious about his future, with good reason. All these years leading up to the final finish line - - providing their...

Easy Tips To Help Your Teen Navigate High School

Easy Tips To Help Your Teen Navigate High School

School is beginning to start across the country. Parents and kids are attending sneak-a-peaks and orientations. The school's individual Facebook groups have many questions from anxious parents whose kids are just starting to participate in middle or high school. I giggled when some middle school parents were asking questions like, "Does my kid get snack time?" and "I don't see P.E. on their schedule. Do they get to go outside every day?"  These questions are a stark contrast to the questions...

How to Organize an Extra 200 Hours in Your Teen’s Life

How to Organize an Extra 200 Hours in Your Teen’s Life

Do you have an extra 200 hours in your life? I don't. Does your teen? Probably not. Yet, that is how much time you should allow for the college application process. These hours do not include visiting colleges, researching majors, or SAT/ACT prep. These 200 hours are just the time it takes to write essays, fill out the applications, gather financial information, complete supplemental essays, and much more. I get stressed just thinking about it! If you have a very organized teen who stays on...

How To Get Your Teen To Stand Out In the Sea of College Applications

How To Get Your Teen To Stand Out In the Sea of College Applications

One of the biggest questions I get from parents is, what should my teen have on their college application to help them stand out from the thousands of other applicants? What are the "magic" words or activities that will increase their chances of getting accepted?  Unfortunately, no magic word or particular activity will have the admissions person say, "Yes, this is the one we have been looking for to come to our school!" It will vary by college, and it can vary from year to year, depending on...