Students: Want to work on your plan for your future? Connect with your GEAR UP Parma Advisor! You can schedule an appointment here.
Normandy: Mrs. Walsh
Parma High: Ms. Pollard
Valley Forge: Mr. Lengel
Click the links below to register for the events that interest you!

Get a feel for campus without ever leaving your house. Register below for as many virtual college tours and info sessions as you would like to start learning about various college campuses across Ohio. See which one you could see calling home for the next four years!

DID YOU KNOW that not only can you learn about yourself and plan your future using the tools GEAR UP is sharing, but you can now be REWARDED with GEAR UP swag?! It's true!

Students in grades 8 through 12 can earn incentives and shop in the Virtual GEAR UP Parma Store. What do you need to do to earn incentives? There are a wide variety of options - you can complete tasks in Naviance, do a lesson in Naviance (found on the home page), participate in a workshop or seminar, complete college or scholarship applications, earn a digital badge, meet with your advisor, and more...

Items you can earn include mugs, tumblers, highlighters, wireless earbuds, backpacks, and more! We have over 20 items to choose from. The more you do, the more you can earn!

Once you complete an activity, go to and find the link on the home page. Browse the items and pick out the one you want, then fill out the electronic form to share what you did and what you would like. The item will be safely delivered to you either at school or at home depending on how you are attending school once your activity has been verified. Please give us two weeks to process your orders.

Questions? Contact Cathy Graham at
Meet Sanibel, a senior at Valley Forge High School. She is a creator who loves photography and is in the VisCom program; an athlete who is varsity in both cross country and swimming; a volunteer as a GEAR UP Ambassador; and a student. Sanibel has been exploring her options to continue her education after high school to one day become a counselor. She is not only applying to college - but also applying for scholarships!

Sanibel started her scholarship journey last year as a junior. Her mom encouraged her to get started, telling her "You don't have to be a senior to apply" (great advice, Mom!). She has worked on several scholarship applications, and right now is applying for the QuestBridge Scholarship. Her favorite scholarship to date was the Doodle for Google and, even though she did not win last year, she is already planning this year's entry.

The best part of Sanibel's scholarship journey is learning that you do indeed win! In May, Sanibel learned that she won a $1,000 prize from the College Board Opportunity Scholarship. How? Practicing for the SAT using Khan Academy. There are still several prizes left, and Sanibel is continuing to complete several of the tasks. Not only did she win money, but participating also helped her with the SAT last March as she practiced for the test every day.

"Sometimes it was stressful to find the time to do the work, but I really benefited from having a routine," Sanibel said.

Sanibel's advice for students just starting high school is simple: "Don't stress out. If you start early looking at careers and choices, you will know what you need to do."
2021/2022 FAFSA

WHAT is the FAFSA?
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid

WHY should I complete the FAFSA?
Students interested in continuing their education past high school should complete the application so that they are eligible for federal, state, and institutional aid.

WHAT do I need to complete the FAFSA?
Students and their parents/guardians will need their Social Security Numbers, 2019 Federal income tax returns, 2019 W-2s and other records of money earned, bank statements, and records of investments, as well as any records of untaxed income. An FSA ID is also required to sign the FAFSA electronically.

WHEN do I need to complete the FAFSA?
The FAFSA opens on October 1st every year for the following academic year. Students should complete the FAFSA for the first time during their senior year of high school and each subsequent year after as they intend to be enrolled in a postsecondary program.

One-on-one FAFSA help is available by appointment:
At Normandy, October 14 from 5 pm - 8 pm
At Valley Forge, October 27 from 5 pm - 8 pm
Students from all PCSD schools are welcome at either session

  • Learn how to calculate grade point average (GPA)
  • Take the PSAT
  • Investigate volunteer opportunities
  • Start a resume to keep record of your involvement

  • Take the PSAT or Pre-ACT
  • Attend a Financial Aid Workshop to learn about the various forms of financial aid available for college funding
  • Sign up for activities to keep you motivated and on track
  • Continue to document activities by adding them to your resume

  • Attend the Junior Meeting held for students and families
  • Continue to look at college visit opportunities in Naviance to meet visiting college reps
  • Consider getting a job, volunteering, or joining a club in the community
  • Take the PSAT/NMSQT
  • Schedule an appointment with your College Now advisor to discuss test taking strategies
  • Watch three RoadTrip Nation videos on Naviance or another college/career platform

  • Begin college applications
  • Register for the SAT and/or ACT
  • Complete personal statement and/or college/scholarship essays
  • Check deadlines for admissions, scholarships, and other aid for all institutions you are interested in attending
  • Research scholarships
  • Attend a College Now College Affordability Night session
  • File your FAFSA
  • Continue setting money aside for your college expenses
Have questions about these tasks?
Contact your College Now advisor!