How Can You Become “College Ready?”

Higher education is an important part of taking control of your destiny. You might hear people talk about becoming “college ready.” What does that mean?

Becoming ready for college is about more than getting good grades in English and Math (but that's important too!). You're working on becoming college ready whenever you challenge yourself in your classes and set aside time to study. Managing the money you earn from a job helps you become college ready. So does building your technical skills.

What are you already doing to become college ready? The good news is that this isn't something you do all at once. It's a process, and there are things you can do every day to get there. Here are just a few steps you can take now to prepare for college and create the future of your dreams.

  • Become familiar with academic standards for college. What is expected from college-bound, career-oriented students?
  • Set up an appointment with your school counselor. Together, develop a plan to meet your college and career goals.
  • Participate in extracurricular activities. You might play a sport, join a school club, volunteer, or get a job. These activities can help develop skills such as teamwork that will help you in college and a career. Remember, showing commitment to the activities you choose is more important than trying to build a big list.
  • Also, be sure to check out some of the great resources listed below.

Resources

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  • A Future That is Ours

    Deborah Cullinan, Chief Executive Officer: The more that we are inspired, the more we can see a future that is ours. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster.
    (2.12 MB, pdf)
  • A True Leader

    Rebekah Salwasser, Sports Executive: A true leader is able to walk in other people's shoes. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster. Keywords: leadership
    (1.99 MB, pdf)
  • Career Action Plan

    Use this page to explore what it takes to prepare for a career. (Print multiple copies to explore more than one career.)

    Keywords: printable, printables
    (22.18 KB, pdf)
  • Career Cluster Tracker

    Use this page to maintain a record of the career clusters explored. (Print multiple copies to explore more than one career.)

    Keywords: printable, printables
    (19.48 KB, pdf)
  • Career Comics 1

    Use your imagination to create comics that explore questions about careers: How do I do this? Your comics can be funny, silly, clever, serious, or any combination. (Print multiple copies to create comics for more than one career.)

    Keywords: printable, printables, comic strip
    (24.09 KB, pdf)
  • Career Comics 2

    Use your imagination to create comics that explore questions about careers: What is this job like? Your comics can be funny, silly, clever, serious, or any combination. (Print multiple copies to create comics for more than one career.)

    Keywords: printable, printables, comic strip
    (23.68 KB, pdf)
  • Career Comics 3

    Use your imagination to create comics that star yourself in future careers. Your comics can be funny, silly, clever, serious, or any combination. (Print multiple copies to create comics for more than one career.)

    Keywords: printable, printables, comic strip
    (17.82 KB, pdf)
  • Career Connections Certificate

    Explore 10 different careers to complete this certificate. Decorate a star for each career area you explore.

    Keywords: printable, printables, certificates
    (37.63 KB, pdf)
  • Career Girls Journal – Careers

    Use this activity page and the questions that follow to examine careers more closely and build connections. What are the important things to know about this career? What questions do I have about this career? What steps can I take to prepare for a career in ____________? Is this the…
    (24.74 KB, pdf)
  • Career Girls Journal – College Majors

    Use this activity page and the questions that follow to examine college majors more closely and build connections. What are the important things to know about this college major? What questions do I have about this college major? What steps can I take to prepare for this college major? Is…
    (25.13 KB, pdf)
  • Career Girls Journal – Colleges

    Use this activity page and the questions that follow to examine colleges more closely and build connections. What are the important things to know about this college? What questions do I have about this college? What steps can I take to prepare for this college? Is this the college for…
    (25.13 KB, pdf)
  • Career Tracker

    This chart helps keep track of careers explored. (Print multiple copies of this page.)

    Keywords: printable, printables
    (19.28 KB, pdf)
  • Choose Your Road

    Yvonne Spicer, Museum Educator VP: Choose your road and walk it with pride. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster. Keywords: inspiration
    (2.23 MB, pdf)
  • College Terms to Know

    Download this for a printer-friendly version of college terms for your students to become familiar with. Keywords: college prep
    (135.61 KB, pdf)
  • Cool Career Facts

    Career Girls videos are full of surprising and fun facts about widely diverse careers. Imagine this: Jaime Catchen, Mars Rover Systems Engineer at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), helps plan the Rover’s driving—which rocks are safe to drive over and how to best position the Rover to carry out its…
    (16.33 KB, pdf)
  • Dare to Dream

    Agang Ditlhogo, Social Entrepreneur: Dare to dream and dare to be bigger than anything you can imagine. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster. Keywords: inspiration, inspirational
    (2.09 MB, pdf)
  • Don’t Let Fear Stop You

    Danya Bacchus, Anchor Reporter: Don't let fear stop you. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster. Keywords: inspiration, inspirational
    (2.16 MB, pdf)
  • Don’t Work to Impress

    Danielle Akini, Tech CEO: Don't work to impress people. Work to solve a problem. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster. Keywords: inspirational, inspiration
    (2.04 MB, pdf)
  • Embrace Math

    Charmin Roundtree-Baaqee, Civil Engineer: Embrace math. One class does not define how well you do in a subject. Download and print this free motivational 8" x 8" 300 dpi mini-poster. Keywords: Mathematics, resilience, resiliency, resilient
    (1.84 MB, pdf)
  • Filmmaking Careers: Classroom Lesson Plan

    This guide facilitates whole-class and small-group learning with the Filmmaking Careers video in the Find Your Path section of the website. Keywords: classroom lesson plans, videos, CLP, soft skills, skill-based, skill based, film, making, story
    (243.96 KB, pdf)
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