With the college application season ramping up, counselors across Westerville’s three high schools are launching workshops, planning sessions and providing resources to help high school seniors and their families throughout the process.
Each high school has taken similar approaches: Lunch sessions for students who need help with college and career planning. Workshops for families on topics such as financial aid, FAFSA and college applications. Classroom visits to connect with students and share key dates and upcoming events.
In addition, schools are hosting visits from college admission representatives and principals are sharing weekly communication to parents and guardians about a variety of resources, from links to virtual college tours to advice on where to find scholarships.
“We want families to understand that we’re here to help,” said Jennifer Stovall, a counselor at Westerville South High School.
Support is also available for students who want to enter the workforce after high school, Westerville North High School counselor Erica Beebe said.
“We are seeing a strong amount of students consider entering the workforce or military after high school,” she said. “Counselors and SchooLinks are available to help students through that process as well, not just those who are college bound.”
To help support students with their post-high school plans, the district switched to a new college and career planning platform called SchooLinks this year. The tool helps students explore careers, search colleges, request teacher recommendations, complete college applications and more.
“SchooLinks is an excellent resource for students, and we are excited to help students navigate through the process,” said Erica Guice, counselor at Westerville Central High School.
This week, counselors at each of the high schools hosted SchooLinks sessions for students, helping them navigate through the platform and answering questions.
WSHS senior Tristan Calhoun spent her study hall exploring SchooLinks at this week’s Workshop Wednesday — the counseling department’s weekly session to help students working through the online platform and the college application process.
Calhoun answered a questionnaire that matched her with career options and associated college majors. She was excited to see one of her passions among the suggested fields of study: art. She then looked at a variety of college profiles based on an art major, filtering her selection by various indicators such as whether they accept weighted or unweighted GPAs, require an SAT or ACT, have links to virtual tours or if they offer a bachelors or associate degree.
“I’m glad I came because I need more information about college,” she said. “It’s a lot to deal with.”
More information about college and career planning, by high school, can be found at the following sites: