Time to get serious

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It’s February 13th. Some of you may have already taken the ACT or SAT. Others are taking it for the first time in March or April. Are you ready? Do you think you’ll only take it once and get a good enough score for your dream school?

How have you been preparing for these tests? Are you serious about it, or are you just winging it? In my experience, students who don’t study tend to get low scores on their first try. But, with a solid 2-3 months of studying, they tend to raise their scores by 3-6 points (for ACT) easily. These tests may seem hard at first, but once you know some basic knowledge and what the test-makers are looking for they become more manageable. With the proper tools in your toolkit, you can easily achieve the score you’re going for.

While there are many options for studying for the ACT and/or SAT, usually there’s a certain study option that works for you. Some students do well with self studying (i.e. reading a book and taking some practice tests). Others benefit more from classes that are offered either through their school or a tutoring center. And other students excel with one-on-one tutoring.

I offer one-on-one tutoring and have helped several students over the past few years. I’m proud to say I’ve seen all my students improve their scores on the ACT and/or SAT. Not only were they able to raise their scores, they also walked away with knowledge and tools in their toolkits that will also help them on their journey to and through college.

What’s your next move?

Exposure: how to get your name out

Today’s Daily Prompt is Exposure.

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As a tutor, I go through phases of too many students and referrals to the point that I don’t have to market myself much at all. Then, over time, my students and referrals dwindle down and I have to amp up the marketing in order to get more students. Right now, I am trying to lay low until a few things in my personal life settle down over the next few months. While I only have one student right now, it is the perfect amount for me since I don’t have the time to be able to help more students.

After March of this year, everything should be settled down and I will likely be hoping to get more students in April/May if possible. I plan on starting my marketing in March. What do you do to market yourself for your services?

I have a few ideas that include social media ads, email blasts, and maybe offering a referral bonus to my current/past families that I’ve tutored for. What have you done that has worked in the past/present?

School’s out – Summer’s here

Now that school’s out and the next ACT test isn’t until September, you may be left wondering what there is to do this summer. Especially if you’re happy with your ACT score and don’t plan to take it again. While it may seem like spending the summer sleeping in and doing a whole bunch of nothing in addition to just having fun, the summer is a great opportunity to start adding to your experiences outside of school if you haven’t already.

If you’re a High School Senior (starting this Fall) and have yet to work any sort of job or internship, I implore you to pick up a part time or even full time job this summer. If possible, find something related to what you’re interested in doing as an adult. If you’re unsure what you want to do, feel free to find any decent paying job for the summer that you feel you’ll enjoy.

When I was in high school, I worked part time as a Kennel Assistant at a local animal hospital since I had plans to study Animal Science/ Veterinary Medicine in college. Having this experience helped me land other jobs throughout my college and after-college experience. It even helped me build a great, comprehensive resume.

What are your plans for the summer? Are you going to study, work, or just have fun? If you’re looking for a job, I recommend using indeed.com as it’s a great search engine for jobs near you.

 

“Free” community college

In an effort to help struggling students help pay to further themselves in their educational journey, President Obama is toying with the idea of offering free community college. This plan is called America’s College Promise, and even if it gets approved, it will be years before it is actually applicable and available to students. The interesting part about this plan is that it would help both traditional and non-traditional students. So even if you work full time and go to community college part-time, you can get your tuition down to $0.

Of course, there’s been a mixed reaction to this idea. Some people think the young generation already has it great and shouldn’t receive any more handouts. Our parents and their parents all had to work hard to go to and pay for school. If “kids” are handed everything up to and through community college (a.k.a. Associate’s Degree) then they will learn to expect things, and become spoiled to some degree. It will also not help them learn the cost of living, the cost of education, etc. Also, while the plan covers community college, what about the non-traditional students who don’t do well in traditional schooling? What about trade schools? Or internships, where some people say that you learn the most on-the-job rather than in a lecture hall.

While the idea seems like a decent one, especially for those people who want to better themselves and yet don’t have the means to, I still think the future of higher education is going to look completely different. Student-centered learning is the direction that higher education is moving towards. While the regular traditional colleges and universities are throughout the US and many other countries, these types of schools don’t cover every and all topics, and their teaching styles don’t always apply to each and every field of study. I believe a mixture of classes and work/internships are required to fully learn and understand of field of work. I also don’t think it’s necessary to spend high dollars on tuition nor have to be where your teacher/professor is in order to learn from them. Online learning is the way of the future, especially for the underprivileged countries which don’t have as many universities, or a lack of funds for students to go to school.

What do you think about Obama’s free community college plan? Do you think it is for the best or not? Why or why not?