10th grade is a crucial one in the world of college prep:
- Meet again with your counselor early in the year to make sure you’re still on track with your high school course plan.
- Take advantage of any internship, externship, or shadowing opportunities your school or community offers.
- Take a practice Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying test.
- Research ways to take on leadership roles in your extracurricular activities.
- Put together a preliminary list of colleges you think you might want to go to. When putting together this list, consider size, diversity, location, the campus experience according to current students or alumni you know, the activities it offers and how these activities impact student life, and academic resources vs. your preferred fields of study. See Choosing the Right College.
- Find a part-time job, volunteer opportunity, course, or camp to do over the summer. Just remember: academics should always come first. Gifted students often make great employees and some employers may take advantage of this by trying to overbook you. Always leave time for studying and relaxing, and learn now how to set boundaries and schedule your time.
- Consider taking an advanced course in a TIP summer program, and choose a field you are very interested in to see if you might want to pursue it in college or as a career. Often, you will be able to explore a topic not taught at your high school, giving you a rare opportunity to try out an advanced subject for yourself.