Preparing for post-secondary education can be stressful with all the different choices and checklists. If you are thinking about college, I wanted to draw your attention to these essential parts of the college application process.

Step 1: Register and take the ACT. The ACT is a college entrance exam that will reflect your learning capabilities in different subsections, ultimately averaging to a composite score. The composite score is used to show colleges and universities that you are ready for the college of your choice. If your student(s) are college-bound, we strongly encourage taking the ACT for the first time during the second semester of Sophomore year or beginning of Junior year. The next test date in Centerville is April 4, 2020 at the Indian Hills campus and the registration deadline is February 28th.

Step 2: Apply to college(s) and visit the school you are planning to attend. You want the colleges to know that you are thinking about attending their school. You will want to know their deadlines, programs, scholarships, housing, and more. The best way to start the process is to apply to the college and be in contact with an Admissions Representative. They are great resources and able to answer all your questions about that school.

Step 3: Complete the FAFSA Application. The Free Application for Federal Student Aid is an application for federal grants, work-study, and loans. In addition, the state of Iowa and many colleges use your FAFSA information to determine your eligibility for state and school aid. This is an important step towards getting financial support for college and determining what college will cost. If you have any questions about the FAFSA application or want to set up an appointment to have help completing the FAFSA, you can contact Greg Teets at 641-680-0009 or gregory.teets@centervillek12.org.

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Ryan Hodges is a counselor at Centerville High School. He can be reached at by calling 641-856-0813, ext. 1103, or by email at ryan.hodges@centervillek12.org.

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