If you’re in the 8th grade or starting it soon, this checklist is for you as you enter high school:
- Seek out opportunities to challenge yourself academically, physically, and socially. Try new activities, like sports, music, computer coding, or anything else that catches your interest.
- Talk to your family, teachers, and guidance counselors about college so you can learn about the different options you have.
- Talk to your parents about how much they will be able to pay for college, how much you will need to rely on financial aid or work-study, and what expectations they may have about you contributing to your college costs. If you will be contributing to your own college costs, now is the time to start saving.
- Evaluate your high school options to see what’s right for you. Talk to your parents and guidance counselors about private schools, charter schools, schools with special programs for academically gifted students, and other options.
- Explore different career paths. Ask your family, teachers, neighbors, and other adults about their jobs, and start thinking about what careers are related to your interests.
- Consider applying to a TIP summer program in a field you’ve always wanted to explore further. You may discover an academic passion you did not know you had, giving you lots of time to focus on it in high school and college.