Early College Planning Night

Holyoke High students get a head start on planning for college and the future!

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Early College Planning Night

Holyoke High gives underclassman a chance to start thinking about college prep early.

Holyoke High gives underclassman a chance to start thinking about college prep early.

Holyoke High gives underclassman a chance to start thinking about college prep early.

Holyoke High gives underclassman a chance to start thinking about college prep early.

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Holyoke High hosted their Early College Planning Night on Wednesday February 15th for ninth and tenth grade families and any other interested students, parents, and school community members.

The evening consisted of a MEFA (Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority) presentation that discussed topics including college lists, current trends, campus visits, the application process, financial aid, and free resources.

MEFA representative Dawn Lapierre.

The presentation was put on by MEFA representative Dawn Lapierre. Lapierre has a strong background in financial aid and admissions and has worked in multiple colleges such as Our Lady of the Elms in Chicopee.

“It’s never too early to start investing in your future by accessing the great college planning tools that are offered,” Lapierre told The Herald. “Don’t forget that your guidance office is your greatest resource and MEFA is a wonderful one too.”

At the presentation, those in attendance learned about the first steps to take when starting the college process and about college admissions. Discussions included the differences between early action, early decision, regular decision, rolling admission and open admission. Attendees also learned about wait lists, writing college essays, formal and informal college visits, the different types of standardized tests and their importance, the different types of college applications, high school schedule rigor, and paying for college. The presentation also provided multiple websites for families to access when planning for college.

Dawn Lapierre and HHS guidance counselor Mrs. Horton told families about collegeboard.org and how they can link their college board accounts to khanacademy.org to study for tests like the SAT. Families were also informed about tools such as online net price calculators and online campus virtual tours.

“I thought the presentation was informative and helped to answer many questions about college. The websites that were discussed seem like they’ll be very helpful,” said HHS parent Dave Duggan.

A copy of the slideshow that was presented can be found online at mefa.org. Dawn Lapierre is also the host for Holyoke High’s very popular Financial Aid Night, so make sure to keep an eye out for another wonderful college presentation from Dawn!

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