Playing the ACT/SAT “Game”

There is a lot of fuss about college admissions testing and a lot of money (it’s a multi-billion dollar industry) spent on test prep services. In fact, Press coverage last week regarding standardized college entrance exams was all a buzz with the announcement of changes being made to the SAT. Why is there so much focus on these tests? Because if you want to get in to the school of your choice and if you want to get scholarship money, your ACT/SAT score is the number one determinate. We’ve even been focusing on the ACT prep here at Horizon Point


As a high school student who has taken the ACT nine times, I understand how hopeless you can feel after taking your first ACT. My first one I received a 17 and was devastated. It made me sick to hear about students who took the test the first time and made a 32. I had to realize that my mind was not made like that; the ACT was not something I could breeze through. I had to buckle down and put hours into practicing and tutoring.   Studying for the ACT can be overwhelming, but learning how the test works

College Prep for Seniors

Your freshmen, sophomore, and junior year helped you be prepared for college, but your senior year is when you have to make it a reality. As a high school senior, I went through the admissions process this past fall. Applying to colleges and scholarships takes a lot of effort and initiative. The first few months of my senior year were a bit hectic. I had lots of homework, ACT tutoring, and college applications that had to be done in 2 months. I should have gone into my senior year with my future in mind. Here are a few tips to

College Prep for Juniors

The past two weeks I have made a list for freshmen and sophomores on how to be prepared for college. While those years are important, Junior year has the most responsibilities for college bound students. Like most students I knew I was going to college, but that assumption made me ignore important steps when preparing. The beginning of this past year, when I started applying to schools, I made it so hard on myself because I was lazy and had little drive my junior year. I should have set my priorities with college in mind. To help you have college

College Prep For Sophomores

Your sophomore year of high school is a pivotal year to make sure you are challenging yourself and expanding upon what you learned your freshman year. As a high school senior about to transition to college, I’ll be continuing this week with my focus on what to do each year to make sure your beyond ready for college. When Sophomore year came around, I felt like I had high school figured out. Little did I know there was so much more that I could have done to help me be prepared for college. Here is my to do list for

College Prep for Freshmen

The way students prepare for college changes from generation to generation. Teachers and parents provide wonderful, and much needed, encouragement and support, but it can help to have the perspective of someone who is going through the process of applying and choosing a college. I am a senior at Decatur High School and just finished choosing the college I will attend. When I was a freshman it was hard for me to plan past the weekend much less make a four year plan. There are a lot of things I am glad I did but a few things I would

What Do You Envy?

Are you envious of the guy who has started his own restaurant? What about the attorney who has argued a case before the Supreme Court (this is one of the examples in Quiet)? How about the friend who is a stay-at-home mom by day, painter by night with happy kids and her art in galleries all over the country? Maybe you’re jealous of the teacher who inspires you when she talks with passion about what the students in her class are learning. You wish you had that kind of passion. In reading, Quiet- The Power of Introverts in a World

Help Your Child Discover

I’m going to completely contradict myself today, so hang on. In a previous post I stressed the importance of 10,000 hours of practice in order to achieve mastery in a given field, implying that if you are a student that wants to succeed in a particular arena, or if you are a parent wanting to help your child become successful, devote most of your time to a single effort.  Is a singular focus in the teen years the right thing? Does this set a child up for career success? I’m beginning to think not.  A singular focus in one thing may

College Prep Checklist

Have no clue what to do when to prepare for college admissions? You’re not alone. Recently, two parents and their high school senior were in our office seeking our assistance in vetting different college programs. They were shocked to hear that most admission deadlines in order to be considered for scholarships were less than two weeks away. In addition, they had already missed a few early acceptance application process deadlines to schools that were at the top of their list. Preparation for college can be a daunting process, with many students and their parents caught at the last minute with

Your Talents- What are you good at?

The first step in finding your light is to know yourself.  The three pieces of knowing yourself involve discovering your talents, passions and values. We’ll start first with identifying your talents.    There are many ways to define and identify talents, but for the purpose of career exploration and development, I think they best way to identify your talents is to define them in the way that employers do.   After all, the whole point of knowing yourself is so that you can be able to find a career that you enjoy doing so that your light can shine. KSAOs- Knowledge, Skills, Abilities