Lancer Spotlight 9/1/22: Senior workshop helps prepare students for college applications

by Izabella Manning, Photo Editor

On August 29, Linganore High School’s Student Services Department hosted a senior workshop to help improve students’ college readiness.

The seminar, led by counselor Jessica McDonald, took place at 7 p.m. in the Linganore auditorium and covered various topics designed to prepare seniors for the college application process.

In addition to graduation requirements, the workshop focused on three main topics: what to do right now, useful websites for applications, and upcoming dates and deadlines.

McDonald discussed how seniors should be creating senior brag lists, reaching out to teachers for letters of recommendation, and narrowing down college lists. Although not urgent, McDonald also recommended seniors start writing college essays now.

The workshop thoroughly covered Naviance and how it can be used to narrow down college choices and create a senior brag sheet. For assistance with the actual college application, McDonald reviewed websites such as Common App and StandOut. These joint college application websites allow students to complete one application to apply to colleges which accept the Common App, rather than  fill out the same basic application over and over.

Lastly, McDonald talked about upcoming dates for different kinds of applications such as early action and early decision.

Overall, students found the workshop helpful with one critique: students reported not learning enough about writing college essays.

“I think with the college essays it would have been nice if Ms. McDonald elaborated more. I know she said to keep it simple and not overthink it too much, but learning a little more about the expectations would have been nice,” said class of 2023 member Grace Nam.

Senior Helen Rankin had similar thoughts. “I think that a sample question of the student personal essay could be added, and that would be helpful just to give an expectation of what we might have to actually provide.”

Despite that, both seniors claimed that they found the workshop useful and would recommend it to any future seniors.

Rankin said, “I would recommend it. It was really helpful in mitigating stress and anxiety about starting college applications, and it made me feel a lot more confident.”

Any seniors who missed the workshop but are still looking for assistance in their own college application journey can sign up for the College Bootcamp taking place during PREP Wednesday, September 7.