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College Counseling
8th - 12th Grades

The college admissions process presents many challenges and can seem, at times, to be complex and confusing. Still, it can also be interesting, rewarding, and exhilarating—all at the same time. The goal of college counseling is to help each student find the match that best suits his or her needs. We seek to encourage students to approach the admission process as young adults and strive to help all PCA students, from the eighth grade on, to discover their passions, interests, and talents, and to build upon their strengths and develop new ones, all so that they can enter college with not only the confidence of having an excellent PCA education as a foundation but also with the knowledge that they have found the best college fit.

College Counseling Activities: Grade 8 - 9

  • Register and schedule to take the PACT (click here for practice) and ACT on specified dates

  • Review ACT results with student and family

  • Student should begin to develop an extracurricular resume (becoming involved in PCA community, clubs, teams, and other organizations)

  • Meetings with counselor (both student and parents) as necessary and desired

  • Student should consider summer projects/volunteer opportunities, etc.

  • Review entrance requirements/expectations for many colleges



College Counseling Activities: Grade 10

  • Register and schedule to take the PACT (click here for practice) and ACT on specified dates

  • Review ACT results with student and family; suggest test prep strategy, if necessary

  • Discuss course selection—especially important as student moves into 11th grade

  • Group parent meeting on the college admissions process

  • Meetings with counselor (both student and parents) as necessary and desired

  • ACT Exam (with Writing) for practice, if recommended

College Counseling Activities: Grade 11

  • Parent College Information Forum

  • First Junior ACT with Writing (if desired and/or recommended): October or December; second, if recommended: April or June

  • November/December: Group meetings with juniors to familiarize students with the college office and to help students begin college research

  • Junior Parent College Night

  • First official counselor/student (and family) individual meetings on college planning, beginning January of junior year

  • Preliminary college list developed

  • Contact all colleges on preliminary list

  • Advanced development of activities resume

  • First college trips and interviews

  • Assistance in selection of teacher recommendations

  • Consultation regarding financial aid

  • Assistance in selection of summer activities/jobs/programs

College Counseling Activities: Grade 12

  • Seniors encouraged to attend optional college essay workshop during the first week of August

  • Parent College Information Forum

  • Continued individual student and/or family meetings with the counselor

  • October/November: final ACT (with Writing)

  • Assistance in refining the final college list

  • Students write college essay(s); review essay(s) with counselor

  • Counselor writes school recommendation for each senior

  • Review of College Applications prior to submission

  • Consultation regarding financial aid

  • Consultation with counselor about acceptances

  • Meet the May 1st, National Decision Day, deadline

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