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Counselors Hold College Planning Workshops for 11th Graders

Over the next few months, many of Eastchester High School’s 11th graders will find themselves at the beginning of an exciting journey, as they start to dive headfirst into the college selection process. As part of that process, EHS counselors have been hard at work, helping students plot a course for their post-graduation plans.


On Tuesday morning, EHS Counselor Emily Cozzi met with about 10 students—and their parents—in the EHS Digital Lab as part of a continuation of several activities, workshops, lessons, and meetings that have been designed to help students make informed decisions about their academic futures. The workshop was one of 21 such events that the EHS Counseling Department scheduled between Dec. 15 and Feb. 8 as part of an ongoing process to prepare EHS students for life beyond high school.


The college planning workshop touched on upcoming events that 11th graders should be cognizant of, including application deadlines, college fairs and testing dates. Students were also reminded about the tools and opportunities available to them, including Naviance Student, a website designed to assist students throughout the college/career planning process. Cozzi also encouraged the 11th graders to seek out and attend upcoming visits from college representatives from the institutions in which they may interested.


Cozzi said that the idea behind these workshops is to give students an overview of what their next few months will look like, before they begin to chart out more individualized plans during the spring. 


“Some students come in knowing exactly what they’re looking for in a college and some don’t really know where to start, so we meet them where they are and go from there,” she said. “We’re giving them a lot of information right now, and they’ll need to digest it and then we can better answer questions when we meet with each student individually.”


One of the questions Cozzi said has been at the forefront of the admissions process for these students is the debate on whether or not it is beneficial to participate in standardized exams such as the SAT and ACT. Many colleges are not currently requiring students to submit their scores as part of their application, though Cozzi noted that things may be different in coming years for younger students. 


EHS counselors are still encouraging current 11th grade students to opt in, however. 


“The testing situation is really ever-changing with colleges, so when we meet with students, the message we send is that they should prepare for and take these exams as though they are going to need them,” she said. “You want an 11th grader who knows the tests are going to be optional to still take them, so they have the option to decide if it is in their best interest to submit those scores."


While these particular workshops have been specifically tailored to the 11th grade experience, they are part of a continuum of opportunities offered by the counseling department in an effort to guide students across all grade levels on their paths through Eastchester High School and beyond.


On Feb. 14, there will be an information session for 10th graders and their families about the career and technical education opportunities available at Southern Westchester BOCES, which will be followed by a campus tour on March 3. The department has also scheduled the optional Pre ACT for Saturday, March 18 and will be visiting English classes next month to discuss the practice exam and engage 10th graders with an activity on Naviance.  


Counselors will also be scheduling college planning workshops for 10th graders this spring. These workshops are structured similarly to the ones held for 11th graders, but contain information specific to that grade-level.