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A Christian, Classical, College Preparatory School  

Academic Advising

The focal point of Covenant’s college advising program is individualized college advising. Our college admissions experts collaborate with students and parents to facilitate the thoughtful selection, application, and admission to the top-choice colleges which will fulfill their educational and career needs.  
College advising at Covenant involves more than simply supplying the students with a list of universities. We work hand in hand with the students to develop short and long life goals, to understand themselves, to explore the world of work, to understand their decision-making process, and to engage in college planning. We take a holistic view of the student to ensure that any potential college will meet their education, religious, physical, social, and career needs.

Our advisors have been to over 75 universities throughout Canada and the United States. Therefore, we have extensive, first-hand knowledge of colleges and graduate schools, big and small, around the country. This personal insight provides students with a much deeper understanding than any catalog or website can convey. Because our advisors are familiar with a multitude of institutions, we can present students with a much wider selection of possibilities and provide vital help in weighing factors such as cost, location, and curriculum.

Image of past colleges attended

College Planning Checklist
  • Meet with Covenant college advisor in the Spring to discuss college in general.

  • Start your high school career well by getting organized, developing good study habits, managing your time, and seeing teachers when problems arise. One of the most important skills in Upper School is maintaining a balance between academics, athletics, activities, and personal life.

  • Work diligently at academics because your GPA earned during your freshman year matters for college. College applications mainly use a student’s GPA from the 9th-11th grade since students submit applications in the Summer/Fall of their 12th grade year (low GPAs can be difficult to raise).

  • Participate in different clubs, activities, and sports that interest you. This begins to develop your college “resume.”

  • Begin creating a college resume by documenting your co-curricular activities, awards, and community service; this will occur during CAP time.

  • Perform at least 20-25 service hours this year (service hours cannot be paid). Covenant requires a total of 80 service hours from 9th-12th grade. Do not wait until your Junior and Senior years as these are very busy years.

  • Become familiar with Naviance, which can be used to research colleges, scholarships, career options, and student activities. This will occur during CAP time and students will receive activities to complete to help them navigate Naviance.

  • Take a practice PSAT in October. The “real” PSAT will be taken in the student’s 11th grade year and is important in determining National Merit scholars.

  • Start to explore different colleges and think about various career options.

  • Ask college representatives questions when they visit our school during CAP time.

  • Attend Houston College Fair with Covenant and talk to at least 5-8 college admission representatives.

  • Participate in enriching summer activities, such as volunteer activities, camps, or part-time jobs. College admission offices like to see that you have been productive during your summers.

  • Pray for wisdom and discernment in the college process.

  • Meet with Covenant college advisor in the Spring to discuss college.

  • Continue to work diligently at academics because your GPA earned during the sophomore year matters for college. College applications mainly use a student’s GPA from the 9th-11th grade since students submit applications in the Fall of their 12th grade year.

  • Participate in different clubs, activities, and sports that interest you. Choose quality co-curricular activities that allow you to demonstrate leadership.

  • Begin creating a college resume or update your existing resume by documenting your co-curricular activities, awards, and community service; this will occur during CAP time.

  • Perform at least 20-25 service hours this year (service hours cannot be paid). Covenant requires a total of 80 service hours from 9th-12th grade. Do not wait until your Junior and Senior years as these are very busy years.

  • Become familiar with Naviance, which can be used to research colleges, scholarships, career options, and student activities. This will occur during CAP time and students will receive activities to complete to help them navigate Naviance.

  • Take a practice PSAT in October. The “real” PSAT will be taken in the student’s 11th grade year and is important in determining National Merit Scholars. If you would like to receive different college’s brochures, then check the appropriate box on the PSAT.

  • Continue to gather information about different colleges and think about various career options. Start to build a preliminary list of colleges and request brochures from those colleges.

  • Ask college representatives questions when they visit our school during CAP time.

  • Attend Houston College Fair with Covenant and talk to at least 5-8 college admission representatives.

  • Participate in enriching summer activities, such as volunteer activities, camps, or part-time jobs. College admission offices like to see that you have been productive during your summers.

  • Become familiar with College Board (www.collegeboard.com) during CAP time. College Board is a vital resource that provides information on the PSAT, SAT,  SAT Subject tests, study questions, and much more.

  • Pray for wisdom and discernment in the college process.


AUGUST–SEPTEMBER

  • Meet with the Covenant college advisor and discuss college admissions process.

  • Check credits to make sure you are fulfilling Covenant’s graduation requirements. Take rigorous classes that challenge you.

  • Continue to work diligently on academics because your GPA earned during your Junior year matters for college. College applications mainly use a student’s GPA from the 9th-11th grade since students submit applications in the Summer/Fall of their 12th grade year.

  • Continue participation in different clubs, activities, and sports that interest you. Choose quality co-curricular activities that allow you to demonstrate leadership. Colleges are not only looking for challenging coursework and strong GPAs but also co-curricular activities, leadership, and community service.

  • Begin creating a college resume or update your existing resume by documenting your co-curricular activities, awards, and community service.

  • Perform at least 20 service hours this year. Covenant requires a total of 80 service hours from 9th-12th grade.

  • Study for the PSAT in CAP. The PSAT will be taken in October and is important in determining National Merit scholars.

  • Ask college representatives questions when they visit our school during CAP time and note their answers in a journal. Determine 2-3 questions in advance and ask each college these questions. This allows you to see how colleges differ from one another.

  • Pray for wisdom and discernment. Do not become overwhelmed with the process. It will be fine!

OCTOBER–DECEMBER

  • Take the PSAT in October. If you would like to receive different college’s brochures, then check the appropriate box on the PSAT.

  • Create a preliminary list of 5-8 colleges. At a minimum, include 1-2 “safety” colleges, 2-3 “interested” colleges, and 1-2 “reach” colleges in your college list. Plan to apply to at least 3-5 colleges.

  • Start thinking about which teachers you would like to write your letters of recommendation.

  • Begin to create a list of possible college essay ideas. For instance, as you experience things, if something is particularly meaningful, interesting, or important, then note it.

JANUARY–FEBRUARY

  • Receive PSAT scores in CAP time and discuss with college advisor if you have any questions.

  • Register to take the ACT exam (www.act.org).

  • Consider also taking the SAT to see which exam is better suited for you. Register for the SAT through College Board (www.collegeboard.org).

  • Determine course selections for your Senior year and discuss with college advisor.

  • If you are interested in playing college athletics, make sure to register with the NCAA Clearinghouse (www.ncaa.org) and the NAIA (www.PlayNAIA.org).

MARCH–MAY

  • Attend Houston College Fair with Covenant and talk to at least 5-8 college admission representatives.

  • Use the Junior College Visit Days to travel to colleges in which you are interested. Covenant allows students to have 2 days during their Junior year, and they do not count against the student. Make sure to complete the Pre-Arranged Absence Form to turn into teachers. Additional days may also be approved based on the request. Try to visit different type colleges (small vs. large, private vs. public, Christian vs. non-Christian).

  • Consult with family, friends, teachers, and advisors about their college and career experiences.

  • Consider asking teachers for your letters of recommendation, especially if you are doing Early Admissions. Try to give teachers several weeks to write strong, personal letters. Please note that the letters are confidential and cannot be seen by either the student or his/her parents. Once teachers complete the letters of recommendations, they will give them to Mrs. Baucom.

SUMMER

  • Participate in enriching summer activities, such as volunteer activities, camps, or part-time jobs, over the summer. College admission offices like to see that you have been productive during your summers.

  • Visit colleges so that you can obtain a flavor of the different colleges that you are considering. Use Covenant’s College Visit Tip Sheet and make notes of the advantages and disadvantages of different universities (or everything will begin to blur together).


JULY–SEPTEMBER

Most colleges open admissions in July. Begin organizing your applications over the summer so everything is not rushed in the Fall.

  • Meet with the Covenant college advisor to check credits and make sure you are fulfilling Covenant’s graduation requirements. Audit your transcript for any errors or mistakes. Finalize college list, review list, and discuss Early Action and Early Decision applications.

  • Remain focused on academics and finish strong. Many colleges will review senior fall semester grades when assessing applications and scholarships.

  • Finalize college resume by documenting your co-curricular activities, awards, and community service.

  • Perform at least 20 service hours this year. Covenant requires a total of 80 service hours from 9th-12th grade.

  • Use the Senior College Visit Days to travel to colleges in which you are interested. Covenant allows students to have 3 days during their Senior year, and they do not count against the student. Make sure to complete the Pre-Arranged Absence Form to turn into teachers. Additional days may also be approved based on the request.

  • Request teacher letters of recommendation if you have not already. Try to give teachers several weeks to write strong, personal letters. Please note that the letters are confidential and cannot be seen by either the student or his/her parents.

  • Finish writing college essays during CAP. Make any final adjustments after receiving feedback from College Advisor/teacher.

  • Register for the ACT exam (www.act.org) or SAT (www.collegeboard.org) if you need to improve your scores. Also take SAT Subject Tests if required by your college. Register for September or October testing dates to ensure you meet college admission deadlines in a timely manner. Please note you cannot take the SAT and SAT Subject Tests on the same day.

  • If you are interested in playing college athletics, make sure to register with the NCAA Clearinghouse (www.ncaa.org) and the NAIA (www.PlayNAIA.org).

  • Pray for wisdom in the college application process.

OCTOBER–DECEMBER

  • Apply for financial aid by filling out FAFSA (Free Application for Federal Student Aid) (https://fafsa.ed.gov). FAFSA opens October 1.

  • Use Naviance to research scholarship opportunities, including merit scholarships offered at the colleges to which you are applying. Apply for all scholarships for which you qualify.

  • Complete and submit college applications. For mailed college applications, make a copy prior to mailing so that if your application is lost, you do not have to create a new one. Request appropriate transcripts.

    • Naviance allows you to track which elements of your college application are still outstanding (i.e., test scores, transcript, letters of recommendation, etc), so periodically review Naviance to make sure your colleges have your information.

    • Early Decision deadlines are usually November 1, while Regular Admission deadlines are January 1 (do not miss your college’s deadline). Notification of Early Decisions is usually December 15th.

  • Complete college housing application which is normally separate from admissions application. Check with the admissions office for your college for more information, such as housing deadline, required paperwork, deposit, etc.

  • If you receive acceptance to an Early Decision school, make sure to carefully follow their directions. Submit required forms and notify other schools to which you applied of your decision.

JANUARY-FEBRUARY

  • If you submitted FAFSA, you should receive the Student Aid Report. Review for accuracy as errors can result in the loss of financial aid dollars.

  • Continue to apply for scholarships.

  • Maintain your grades. On some occasions, colleges can revoke offers of admissions if grades decline significantly.

MARCH-MAY

  • Look for acceptance notices. Most colleges notify students in late March to early April.

  • Decide on which college you would like to attend and write a letter of acceptance (most colleges need to receive this by May 1st). Write other colleges to decline acceptance.

  • Provide Mrs. Baucom with copies of all acceptance letters.

  • Finalize financial aid, scholarship, and housing plans. Make any required deposits by their deadlines (many schools have a deposit deadline of May 1st). Carefully read all information from your college over the summer as they will send important information concerning registration, housing, etc.

  • Register and take appropriate AP exams. Have scores reported to your college.

  • Ask Mrs. Baucom to send your final transcript to your college.

CONGRATULATIONS AS YOU START AN EXCITING NEW JOURNEY!!


STAY ON TRACK

Covenant recommends that students and parents set up accounts with Naviance, an online college counseling and career readiness resource. Naviance enables students to collaborate with parents, teachers and counselors to find college and career paths that match their unique goals, skills and interests. It also helps students:

*  Research college options
*  Apply for scholarships
*  Manage application timelines and deadlines
*  Build resumes
*  Track applications and admission status
*  Communicate with deans

COLLEGE SCHOLARSHIPS

Many colleges seek to offer scholarships to students who have achieved academic excellence in high school and performed well on SAT and ACT tests.  Covenant offers one college scholarship opportunities for graduating seniors entering a college or university the fall after graduation.  This scholarship is available to students who have successfully completed Covenant's Spanish classes.

Recipients of scholarships are announced at the senior banquet held each May. Students wishing to apply for the Spanish scholarship may do so by emailing Mrs. Holmes.  

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