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CHS Counseling Office

College readiness

Preparing for College

*College means any school or program after high school.

Getting to college can be stressful. You may think you need to have everything figured out before you pick a school and you may also be worried about the cost. Here are some steps to guide you along the journey. 


  1. 9-12th Grade- Focus on your classes and your grades. All your grades accumulate for your cumulative GPA and credit totals. Your GPA can be an important factor on future opportunities, depending on what you want to do.

  2. Use your YouScience Profile Results to explore your aptitudes, interests, and career matches or use the O*NET Online Website- when searching careers. 

  3. Job Shadow- If or when you have an idea of a career you'd like to know more about. Contact someone in that field or at the business/organization to ask about getting a job shadow scheduled. This is where you go and meet with an individual in that career and spend time observing what they do or have a conversation about their education background, what they do on a daily basis, etc. 

  4. Choosing a college- Spend time looking online for schools that ‘fit’ what you are looking for. Use this college checklist and comparison sheet (to the right and in google classroom). Once you have chosen a few schools you are interested in, make a list of the schools and when their application deadlines are. 

  5. Visit the College-  Once you’ve chosen some options for college, make arrangements to visit those schools. Do this by calling the admissions office and setting up a date and time. CHS also has a lot of college representatives come to the high school. If you are unable to visit the campus, take advantage of them coming to you.

  6. Paying for College- Talk with your student and or family about how you are going to pay for school. Will the student need to pay for school, will the family be able to contribute? 

    1. Work and Save Money​

    2. Search for Scholarships (See link to the right)

    3. Education Investment Accounts

More Resources

College Application Process

Use this guide to help you in your application process.

  1. Seniors- We recommend you apply by Christmas of your Senior year unless your school has an earlier deadline for applications.

  2. October is 'College Knowledge Month' in MN. Many colleges/universities in MN will waive their application fee during the month or period of time in October. Check the MN College Fee Waiver list in google classroom and to the right.

  3. Ready to Apply? Go to the website of the school you'd like to apply to. Click on Apply to begin the application. You may have to pay an application fee. If you have any questions about the fees, please talk to your School Counselor

  4. After you submit your application: (your application is not complete until the school has all the required materials listed on your application requirements for that school, call the admissions office if you have questions)

    1. Send your HS Transcript-Order your transcript through Parchment (see link to the right or on the homepage of the CHS website)

    2. Make sure you pay your application fee

    3. Send tests scores if needed. Not all colleges require the ACT, SAT, or Accuplacer exam. Check the application requirements. 

    4. Sending Your ACT Score- Go to, login to your account and request to send score. (If you have not created an account before you will need to create an account with your ACT ID that was on your ACT score report you received in the mail)

  5. Application Completed-  Make a folder in your email for each school and organize the emails. 

  6. Complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA)- 

7. Search for Scholarships- See the Paying for College page on the right menu above

8. Accepting a school-  Once you get a letter of acceptance, you will need to pay attention to the deadline for acceptance. A lot of schools let you wait until May 1 to accept. I would recommend the sooner the better, but make sure you think through your choice, and the financial situation.

  1. Send Transcript (again)- Send your transcript to your school of choice the end of Semester 2 so they receive your Final and Official Transcript.
    *If you took college classes, you will need to request your college transcript from the college your credits are from. Call the Admissions office on how to do this.

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