“Good college preparation includes taking challenging courses n high school and making good grades in those courses,” Fisher said. “I strongly suggest that high school students who are considering college take the Ohio Core curriculum subjects.”
It adds up that math is a big factor in the equation. “Studies have shown that the No. 1 predictor of academic success in college is how students perform in high school math, particularly in advanced courses such as algebra,” Fisher said.
More than classroom stars, college admissions officials are looking for students who are engaged in other activities. “While grades are more important than outside activities, colleges are looking for well-rounded students. Being involved in activities outside of class can enhance your application and is something the student can mention in application letters. Extra-curricular activities such as school clubs, government, athletics, musical activities and community service can help to build a student’s portfolio. Or, if a student has a part-time job, that shows an ability to handle responsibility and manage the demands of a busy schedule.”
Further, showing up and following through with assignments and responsibilities cannot be underestimated. “Good attendance is important. Plus, you want to finish strongly. Showing a good upward trend of grades as you advance through school is important. Admissions counselors will take that into account if you struggle early but have better grades during your junior and senior years of high school. On the other hand, if you coast and take your senior year off, that can hurt your application."
If students are uncertain about their future plans but college is a possibility, Fisher suggests they take the ACT or SAT college board tests. To quality for financial aid, he advises that they fill out FAFSA forms after the parents’ tax returns are prepared during the student’s senior year in high school.
“If you have any interest at all in college, take the necessary steps to keep that option open. There is no reason to close the door on a college education. If finances are a challenge, there are several scholarship and other financial aid programs available to help with costs. Many can be found by doing a computer search,” Fisher said. “Getting a college degree can open a lot of doors for future success.” Students of all ages and parents who are seeking advice about the college admission process can contact Fisher at (740) 774-7750 or firstname.lastname@example.org or OU-C Manager of Student Recruitment TJ Eveland, (740) 774-7721 or email@example.com
“Whether students attend OU-C or another campus, we are here to help connect area residents with higher education,” Fisher said.