Resilience | April 2021
A Note from Stephanie
In this Newsletter
A Note From Stephanie

Featured Article

Upcoming Events and Deadlines

Class Specific Monthly Focus

College Spotlight

Test Prep Opportunities

Research, Job and Volunteer Opportunities


In Other News

Helpful Resources
Dear Miramonte Community -

April is a time when Spring has sprung and longer days of sunlight are upon us. In the College and Career Center that translates into the last of the college admission decisions being received by our seniors. For the Class of 2021, it has been a longer and harder road than we have ever seen, but they did it! Now the fun really begins. They get to choose who is lucky enough to have them.

As seniors sort through their acceptances, they will experience a plethora of emotions. It is likely the first major decision your child has faced, up to this point, and there are many aspects to consider. For some, they remain in a state of limbo as they wait to hear about their waitlist status. Although it can be hard and may seem unfair, our Featured Article this month will help guide them through what they can control and next steps.

For our juniors, the college process is continuing to ramp up. I've had the pleasure of meeting with almost two-thirds of the class and am enjoying getting to know them. Many are prepping for standardized tests, including AP exams. Some had the opportunity to visit college campuses during Spring Break. All of these steps are integral parts of post-secondary planning, and they are owning it!

This month also marks the end of our Volunteer Service program. All service hours completed by March 31 need to be entered into Helper Helper and validated by April 15. Please see the Volunteer section for more details. We have seen a significant increase in the number of community service hours this year and are proud of those who found a way to give back during this difficult time.

As we start to bring this school year to a close, I hope students are feeling more connected to each other and invigored by being back on campus. I know I love seeing them in the hallways and in our office.


Stephanie Brady
College and Career Center Director

Keep in touch & stay up to date:
Featured Article
How to Write a Letter of Continued Interest
If you were waitlisted—you are not alone! For many reasons, colleges placed a record number of students on waitlists this application season. While you may be grateful that a particular college door is still open to you, being waitlisted can feel like the “limbo” of college admissions. In short, you’re not in, but you’re not out. You are qualified, but the school doesn't currently have room in the class for you. But they might?... Eventually? 
While there are no magic tricks to turn a “might” into an “eventually,” there are steps you can take to help your chances!
As students deposit on May 1, colleges begin filling seats, but they may or may not fill their entire freshman class depending on who accepts their offer. They will also be looking to round out their class in specific ways (e.g., create a gender balance, enroll more in a particular major, increase geographic diversity, bring in students who don't need financial aid, etc.).That’s when the waitlist comes into play. Certain students are chosen off the waitlist for specific reasons. 
If waitlisted from your top school, read your waitlist letter carefully and do your research. Your letter may indicate the historical waitlist data for that college—this will help you understand how likely (or unlikely) that a school may take you off the waitlist. See here for a list of colleges and their waitlist statistics.
If you are still interested in your waitlist school, send a thoughtful email— called a Letter of Continued Interest (LOCI) —to admissions to further express why their school is your top choice and the best fit for you. Be sure to inform them of any updates to your application profile, such as improved grades, new awards, and other signs of significant academic or extracurricular progress. If you are not seeking financial aid, you can let them know that too. Colleges want to admit students from the waitlist they believe will attend—let them know that’s you.

What is a Letter of Continued Interest (LOCI)?
In short, it is another chance to make your case! It not only lets the college know you are still interested but why!
What to include in your LOCI: Schools want NEW information. When put on a waitlist, a school has determined that you are a maybe. A LOCI is your opportunity to change their mind. Be clear, specific, and straightforward:
  • First, address the reader and thank them for reevaluating your application. Restate that you are confident the school is the right school for you. If it is your first choice institution, say so. Add that you will happily attend if admitted off the waitlist. 
  • Then, offer the reader NEW information (awards, new leadership roles, extracurricular activities, projects, updated GPA, or recent test scores). DO NOT restate what was already in your application.
  • Next, write a mini 2-3 sentence “Why Us” section. Share why particular aspects of that school remain the perfect fit for you (major, professors, programs, extracurriculars, etc.). If you have visited the campus, share what you loved. 
  • Last, sign off. Thank the reader for their time and offer to share any additional information needed to make their decision.
Send the letter to the email address shared in your waitlist notice. If there is a form to fill out, use that. If not clear, send the letter to the admissions representative for Miramonte (you can find this on a school’s website).
Be sure to follow directions set forth by the college. If a college asks you explicitly not to send a LOCI, don’t. If you send a LOCI, resist the urge to bombard them with further phone calls, letters, or unwanted supplemental materials. 
Get excited about your other choices and ENROLL. Historically, the likelihood of being admitted from the waitlist is small, but this estimate changes year to year. Regardless, get pumped about your choices, and be sure to enroll in another school by May 1 to secure a seat. If you get notified that you are off the waitlist at some point after that, then you will have a choice to make.
Upcoming Events and Deadlines
April 7: Building a College List Workshop | 7:00 p.m. | Zoom Link
April 10 -11: Part 1 ACT Bootcamp | 10:00 - 12:00 | Register
April 12 & 19: Rotary Club Scholarship Interviews
April 13 & 15: Part 2 ACT Bootcamp | 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
April 14: MHS Alumni Panel for Seniors | 6:30 - 7:30 p.m. | Zoom Link
April 17: ACT
April 21: Rising Senior Presentation | 7:00 p.m. | Link to follow
April 28: How to Brainstorm Your College Essay Workshop | 7:00 p.m. | Zoom Link
Class Specific Monthly Focus
Alumni Student Panel
On, Wednesday, April 14 at 6:30 p.m., we will be hosting a panel of 2020 MHS alumni. This event is intended for students only and is a great way to get real answers to your questions and learn about what it is like to be a student on a college campus. We will have 6 former MHS panelists representing, public and private, and in-state/out-of-state colleges. Zoom link

Analyzing Financial Aid Letters
College acceptance letters are typically accompanied by a financial aid package. They tend to be more confusing than necessary. Schools will put them in different formats and words can be vague. Here are some tips to help:
  • Use this custom College Cost Comparison spreadsheet built specifically for Miramonte families
  • Make an appointment with the College & Career Center to review your award packages
  • Know that you can contact the college's financial aid office and appeal the award you were offered
  • Use websites such as, or

Colleges Missing Out Wall
Our wall is up and letters are continuing to be added. It can be very difficult to receive a rejection but taking a chance is what we are celebrating. If you reach high enough in life, you will inevitably receive some “no’s” as well as "yes's." As a community, it is important to celebrate each other's successes and help each other as we say goodbye to what “wasn’t meant to be” and move forward towards bigger and better things. Stop by the Colleges Missing Out Wall outside the C&CC and share your news with your Miramonte peers and us.
Building Your College List - Webinar
On Wednesday, April 7 at 7:00 p.m., please join us for part 2 of our 3 part series on the college journey. This webinar will introduce juniors to the ins and outs of building a college list through determining fit and match. Zoom Link

Rising Senior Presentation
This presentation is for juniors and their families and will highlight the next steps of the college planning process. It will be held on Wednesday, April 21 at 7:00 p.m. Registration will follow in early April.

Brainstorming Your College Essay - Workshop
Part 3 of our series on the college journey will be on Wednesday, April 28 at 7:00 p.m. It will be a workshop format giving you the opportunity to truly begin your brainstorming ideas for your college essays. Zoom Link

Letters of Recommendation
After Spring Break juniors can begin asking teachers for letters of recommendation. Since teachers do this out of the kindness of their hearts we have some guidelines for students to follow:
  • Only ask 2 academic teachers
  • Make every effort to ask in-person or over Zoom
  • Be sure to also ask counselors
Extracurricular Activities
It's never too late to get involved. The spring is a good time to evaluate your extracurricular activities to determine any additions or changes you may want to make. It is also a great time to start keeping a log of extracurricular activities including: work experience, community service, hobbies and special interests. As you continue to get involved, be sure to add it to your activities resume.
First Years
With the first year of high school almost complete, keep working hard and continue to form your summer plans.
Test Prep Opportunities
ACT Bootcamp | April 10, 11, 13 and 15
This course is designed as an intensive prep course for those looking to take the ACT on April 17. We have partnered with Tried & True to offer the course at a reduced rate. The cost is $199 and includes 8 hours of Bootcamp over 4 days. 
College Spotlight
Whittier College

Whittier College is a private, residential four-year liberal arts college, located on a suburban, 75-acre campus in Whittier, CA. Though founded in 1887 by Quakers, the college has been secular since the 1940s. 

Whittier offers a breadth of classes with 32 majors and a variety of minors. With a focus on interdisciplinary learning, popular majors include Business, Kinesiology, Psychology, English, and Performing Arts.  Professional internships and service projects are required or recommended as part of many academic programs. The optional January interim session, a four-week intensive "mini-semester," typically involves fieldwork and faculty-led international travel.

One-on-one interaction with instructors is common and students describe instructors as “passionate about the subject that they teach.” The faculty brings real-world and work experience to their various courses: “they’re not just lifelong academics, most of them have had successful professional careers outside of teaching” and they “really make [Whittier] worthwhile.” 

Nearly half of the student body is Latinx and students of color constitute about 69% of the college's campus population, making Whittier one of the most diverse liberal arts colleges in the country. This diverse community includes a sizable number of students from out of state, and are described as “very friendly, respectful of others’ different identities, and comfortable with people of different backgrounds.” There is “a good meshing” of all the students regardless of what their involvements are, and a strong community-based feeling on campus.

The campus is small, but there are typically a variety of events happening at any given time. Clubs run the gamut from Anime Club to Fun Night Club to a larping (live-action role-playing) group. Whittier’s version of Greek life comes in the form of the school’s eleven “societies,” and a majority of students have some form of involvement in a society or a sport.  

Whittier’s student-instructor engagement and strong sense of community make the school an ideal choice for students looking for a small, liberal arts college in California. 
Fun fact: Whittier College is one of a very few colleges or universities to have graduated a U.S. President — Richard M. Nixon '34. 
Research, Job and Volunteer Opportunities
It's Time to Enter Your Community Service Hours
Our current community service year ended on March 31. The deadline to have all hours submitted and validated is April 15. If you have any questions please email Ms. Mosher. For detailed information on opportunities, what qualifies, and awards please visit the College & Career Center website

2019-2020 Community Sevice Award Certificates
If you earned the Miramonte Community Service award or the PVSA last year, please stop by the C&CC when you are on campus to pick up your certificate.
It is scholarship season and many of the local scholarships available to our students have deadlines in the upcoming months. Naviance has a comprehensive list but we wanted to take a moment to highlight some of our favorites:

JOSEPH DAUGHERTY MEMORIAL SCHOLARSHIP - Deadline April 15, $1000, Minimum GPA 3.5, Merit-based
New MCCARTHY SCHOLARSHIP FOR LEADERSHIP - Deadline April 15, $1,000 , Minimum GPA 2.5, Merit-based

New HARRIET RESILIENCE SCHOLARSHIP - Deadline April 9, $1,000 each to (2) recipients, Minimum GPA 2.5
In Other News
Expect College Waitlists to Be Obnoxiously Long This Year

With students applying to more colleges this year, admissions offices struggle to predict
who will actually accept their offers.

Can't Make Your College Tour? Campuses Will Come To You!
Families with high-school students are finding novel ways to get a sense of campus; virtual-reality visits 

6 Reasons to Stay Hopeful for College This Fall.

This year has been a whirlwind of change for colleges around the country but that is beginning to change for the fall of 2021

Helpful Resources
Miramonte College and Career Website