Universal Steps to College

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  1. DO WELL IN YOUR CLASSES
    • College and work should be an exercise of your passions; the work you do in high school provides the skills and habits to allow you to live those passions. If you are having a hard time with a class, contact your teacher, your adviser, or Stallings. Upperclassmen can be a great resource, as well! Make some time with them for some one-on-one tutoring before school on Thursdays.
    • If you're on free/reduced lunch, check out OKPromise for free college tuition. You must sign up before you finish 10th grade, though; no way around that. The program requires that you maintain a 2.5 GPA in your core classes in order to qualify for the money.
  2. DO COOL THINGS
    • Join a club or create your own. There are plenty of opportunities around the school to spend time with others learning and doing amazing things.
    • Now is also good time to begin your resume. Build it in Google Drive so you'll always have it.
  3. TAKE THE TESTS
    • TSAS students have always done well on the required tests. If you are doing well in class (see #1!), you should not need to do anything except sign up and get a good night's sleep the evening before.
    • If you're curious, this page has a broad overview of our testing schedule.
  4. FIND A SCHOOL
    • All students should watch the college information calendar for alum visits, college trips, and college visits. These are your chance to talk with students and representatives from universities across the nation—just a few steps from math class.
    • Every summer universities host camps and internships. If you have your eye on a university, find what they offer and dive in!
    • If you aren't sure where to start, BigFuture by the College Board is a great resource to broaden your options.
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    • If your list is too large, or you prefer harder data, look to the College Scorecard.
    • Juniors can schedule visits with any university they are interested in, just contact Stallings for details.
    • Finally, there are a few college fairs each year that allow you to get your information to colleges while gathering obscene amounts of pencils and squishy toys.
  5. FILL OUT THE APPLICATIONS
    • If your university accepts it, start with the Common App. This one application will allow you to apply once to nearly 700 universities across the nation. Locally, Oklahoma City University, University of Oklahoma, and University of Tulsa accept the Common App.
    • Many require letters of recommendation, so ask your teachers for those early! Print and fill out this form to ensure you have all the necessary information.
  6. PAY (AS LITTLE AS POSSIBLE) FOR IT
    • Parents must fill out the FAFSA as soon as possible after October 1st. We will hold a parent night in the fall to walk you through the process—keep an eye on the calendar for the date.
    • Create a new email address with your real name then create an account with BigFuture, Fastweb, and Scholarship America.
    • Oklahoma City Community Foundation has a large number of scholarship opportunities for Oklahoma students.
    • Ask your English teacher (or Stallings) for help with essays.