Volume 10 | November 2019
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

Internship, Job and Volunteer Opportunities


In Other News

Helpful Resources
Dear Miramonte Families -

I am happy to announce that our seniors have successfully made it through the first major round of college admission deadlines. With less than a month before the UC and CSU applications are due, the CCC remains a busy place. Academy sessions are full, individual meetings are booked and essay drafts are being written and edited at a rapid speed. I've also had the privilege of working with our seniors on exploring other post-secondary options. I continue to be amazed by all of them as they work toward life after Miramonte.

As the end of the calendar year approaches our focus will shift to the juniors. Now is the time to start thinking more seriously about standardized tests and timelines, The Featured Article this month will help provide some insight and offer recommendations. Come January my calendar will be fully open for individual junior meetings. Until then please feel free to email me or stop by with any questions.

Looking forward to December, all freshman will be formally introduced to the CCC. They will come in during their PE class to learn about all the magic that happens in here. I look forward to meeting all of them and checking in to see how high school is going.

In the spirit of giving thanks and being grateful for life, I want to say thank you to the students who allow me to walk this journey of high school with them, the parents who support me, and the community who recognizes the value of what happens in this office. A special thank you to Jennifer Mosher. Her support and dedication each week is invaluable to the success of the College and Career Center.
Happy Thanksgiving,

Stephanie Brady
College and Career Center Advisor

Keep in touch & stay up to date:
Featured Article

 Breaking it Down to Find the Best Choice For You
One of the biggest questions students have around the college process is deciding which standardized test to take and when the best time to take it might be. Although some colleges are becoming test optional most still require either the SAT or the ACT. There is truly no advantage to taking one over the other which oftentimes leaves students and parents confused and overwhelmed when trying to decide. 

So, where do you begin? The first step is to take a practice test for both. Oftentimes the choice becomes clear because the score from one is higher than the score from the other or there may be a preference in format. If the decision is still unclear there are additional aspects to consider. The good news is, there is no bad choice.

It is the process used by some colleges in which the highest section scores across all test dates are considered to give the applicant the highest possible composite score. Colleges will superscore the SAT more than the ACT . When trying to determine which test might be the best fit knowing which colleges superscore can be an important factor.

SAT/ACT test dates
Looking at the school calendar and comparing it to the SAT/ACT test dates is another component to consider, especially given the change to the Miramonte calendar this school year. Questions to ask yourself:
  • Do the test dates fall near a school break?
  • How do the test dates line up with AP testing?
  • As an athlete, do I want to take a test during my season?

What about the essay or writing section?
A common question is whether or not to take the essay or writing portion of the test. The recommendation is to always take it. For the colleges that superscore, it will never negatively affect your chances for admission. If applying to the UC’s, they Do NOT superscore and DO require the essay or writing portion. As a result they will only consider test scores taken with the essay or writing component included.

Creating your personal timeline
  • Plan to take the test no more than three times but ideally twice.
  • What Math are you taking?
  • If you have completed Algebra 2/Trig/Pre-Calculus by the end of your sophomore year, sitting for the SAT or ACT in the fall of junior year is a great option
  • If you are enrolled in Algebra 2 or Pre-Calculus in your junior year the ideal time to sit for the first test is in the early spring.

For more information on the differences between the ACT and SAT please visit my post from last year.

Upcoming Events and Deadlines
November 8 : Registration deadline for December 7 SAT and December 14 ACT
November 15: HOBY Applications due
November 16: Mock ACT - Miramonte Library
November 20 & 22 : HOBY Interviews - Academy - CCC
November 23 - December 1: Thanksgiving Break
November 30: UC and CSU application deadline
Class Specific Monthly Focus
UC Essay Workshop
On Friday, November 8 , several students from the Regents’ and Chancellor’s Scholarship Association at UC Berkeley will be coming to Miramonte during Academy to work specifically with students on their UC essays. If you are interested in attending please be sure to register via Teachmore.

Academy Sessions - November
6: CSU Application
8: UC Essay
13: UC/CSU Application
15: UC/CSU Application

Students must be signed up to attend. Sign ups are done via Teachmore.
Junior year is the year to take standardized tests if you plan on applying to four-year colleges. Even though not all four-year colleges require tests, we highly recommend taking either the SAT or ACT to increase your college options. When taking them be sure to take it with the writing portion.

Determine which Test
In November, you should be planning to or have taken practice tests for the SAT and ACT. Taking practice tests helps you determine which test you would like to focus on officially taking. It does not matter to the colleges which test you take so chose the one you feel fits you best.

Create a Test Plan
Determine how you study best. Are you self-disciplined enough to set time aside each week to study? Would group tutoring be helpful, or would you work best with a private tutor?

Choose Test Dates
Your test preparation plan should coordinate with the test dates you plan to register for. Look at the test date options for the  SAT   or   ACT and register for those dates before the registration deadline.

College & Financial Planning for Juniors
November 20, 5:00 p.m.- 6:00 p.m.
Junior year marks a key turning point for high school students (and their parents) as they formally embark on the college search process. Join Stephen Friedfeld, COO at AcceptU and former admissions officer at Cornell University, and Sabrina Manville, COO at Edmit and former university AVP, as they discuss tips on college admissions strategies and financial decisions about college. Register here
HOBY - Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership
HOBY is a three-day leadership seminar for high school sophomores featuring motivational speakers, highly interactive panels, and group discussions to empower students to make a positive impact in their local community. This year’s seminar will be held at Sacramento State University from June 7th to the 9th . Two students will be selected from Miramonte to attend. If interested please complete the application and submit it by Friday, November 15, to the College and Career Center.For more information about HOBY, please check out the website or watch the highlight video from the 2018 seminar.
During the first two weeks of December all freshman will be brought into the College and Career Center during their PE classes. The focus will be on introducing the Center and all its facets including: community service, job postings, and internships.
Test Prep Opportunities
On Saturday, November 16, Tried & True test prep will be offering a Mock ACT to Miramonte students in the Library. Since most juniors and sophomores have recently taken the PSAT this is a great opportunity to compare scores and use the information to help decide which standardized test best fits you. For more information and to register please click here.
College Spotlight
Barnard College is a private women's liberal arts college located in Manhattan, New York, with approximately 2,600 undergraduate students. Located in an urban environment, students can enjoy the benefits of New York City, while living on a quiet, historic campus.

Although Barnard is an independent institution, it is considered one of Columbia University’s four undergraduate colleges. Barnard students have access to libraries, facilities and activities on both campuses and compete in  NCAA Division 1 athletics  through the Columbia-Barnard Athletic Consortium. Undergraduate students can cross-register in courses at both institutions and students receive a diploma from both Barnard College and Columbia University.
Popular majors include Psychology, Economics, Political Science, Biological Science and Computer Science .

At Barnard, students will experience small class sizes, rigorous academics, a flexible curriculum and a liberal arts education. One student described it as, "A high intensity school in a high intensity city."
Internship, Job and Volunteer Opportunities
Getting involved in extracurricular activities is a great way for students to explore areas of interest. We have a large list of internship opportunities on the College 101 website
Seasonal Jobs at Macy's - Broadway Plaza
Macy's Broadway Plaza is looking for high school students to work over the holiday season. If interested please contact Tracey Godwin for more information and to schedule an interview.

Handyman Work
Job needs
General gardening, pruning, grass cutting, handy work
  • 10 - 12 hours a week
  • Pay: $17/hour
Contact: Virginia Fitzpatrick at 925-254-1998
As December approaches we are getting ready to roll out our new Community Service program at Miramonte. The biggest change is to the tracking system. Students will be able to log hours and get supervisor approval through our new electronic system, Helper Helper. An official launch will take place in early December. More details will follow over the next few weeks.
Scholarship opportunities will continue to roll in throughout the school year. We will advertise scholarships and their application details as they open.
In Other News
How College Admission Offices Rank Prospects Before They Apply

Before many schools even look at an application, they comb through prospective students’ personal data, such as web-browsing habits and financial history

Who's Advice Are You Taking? The Fight Over College Counseling
In the first application season since the cheating scandal, schools weigh how to exert control

DVC Ranks 4th Among State Colleges and Number 1 in
 Transfer Rates
Diablo Valley College is now the fourth top-ranked community college in California and ranks number one statewide in transfers to four-year schools.

Helpful Resources
Miramonte College and Career Center