College can be a terrifying subject for students and parents alike without guidance. One benefit of attending an early college high school like RCEC is becoming knowledgeable on how college courses work. Early college high schools tend to start teaching you about it the moment you get accepted into the school.
For River City Early College in Vicksburg, this responsibility belongs largely to Senior Advisor Amber Davis. Her job is to keep the seniors on track while they take Hinds courses and assist them with the transition process from high school to college.
The RCEC Class of 2021 earned a grand total of $3,247,179 in scholarships and are attending many amazing colleges across the country, so it is obvious there are a lot of helpful tips to be shared.
Davis was first asked if she had any advice for high schoolers who don’t have access to programs like River City, and she had a lot to say.
“My biggest advice is to advocate for yourself. If you want to go to college then get out there and make initial contact with the college, find an admissions counselor for that school and bug the snot out of them!”
College recruiters are your biggest friend. Their entire job is to talk to you. They can point you in the right direction for every question you have from getting scholarships to which major is best for you.
Another thing that is highly recommended is making college visits. Davis said that some colleges even award scholarships for visiting their campus. If visiting on your own isn’t possible, see if a teacher could take a group of students on a visit. It’s likely that other students are also interested in that specific college.
Do not wait until your senior year to get your ACT score up. Davis advised, “Most schools stop accepting ACT scores for scholarships by December of your senior year. Start working towards the score you need now so that you can enjoy senior year a little more.”
One of the most important things to make the transition to college easier is filling out your FAFSA. They assist with loads of financial aid and it’s free. The forms can be overwhelming to get through, so take advantage of Free FAFSA Days at your school or using Get2College.
Davis also wants students to realize that it is okay to not go to college. It’s not for everyone and most people don’t have the finances or resources to get to college and go on with their lives as normal.
“I think the ultimate journey in life is to find a career that you constantly enjoy doing that will financially sustain you, while also allowing you to be a positive, productive member of your community. Have joy while you work.”