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Updates from University Counseling- Including Expectations for Premieres, the Gala, and Scheduling Appointments


University Counseling Newsletter - May 10th, 2017

In This Newsletter:

-   Greetings

-   Morning Meeting for Parents 5.17.17

-   College Night 5.22.17

-   Upcoming Local University Events

-   Scheduling Meetings

-   Expectations and Information by Class

 

Greetings Students and Families-

 

Please take a moment to read a very important edition of our newsletter, as there are many events coming in the next few weeks that are going to be critical for some of you. It’s hard to believe that I am beginning my fourth month here at Rochambeau. In such a short time, so much has happened. We have tested, scheduled meetings, you have laughed, cried or perhaps BOTH, in my office…  I danced at our Gala, did yoga with Girls Rising, and I am signed up for French lessons this spring!

 

I am so happy to be here, and I am so inspired by the dedication you put forward every day; as students and as young adults. I spend many of my evenings thinking about new activities we can offer you, how I can support you better, and how to make this process FUN, EXCITING and ENJOYABLE for you.  I came into Rochambeau and hit the ground running… now that I am settling in, my sleeves are rolled up and your energy is inspiring me at every turn. THANK YOU.

 

I promise you: I will work as HARD AS YOU DO to help you achieve your dreams. I can’t do this process for you, but I can certainly guide, support and assist. The more we work together, the smoother this process will go for you, and the more confident you will be with college planning. Please read on for all of the events coming in the months of May and June… I sincerely hope that you will attend every possible one. I am here to help prepare you.

 

No matter what year you are in now, my door is always open to you. Feel free to come in with questions, to say hi, or if you just need an ear. If you want to be sure we have dedicated time, please continue to use the dedicated counseling scheduler to be sure I’m free when you want to sit down: http://universitycounseling.simplybook.me/v2/

 

I want to see you all successful and reaching goals you set for yourself.

 

Sincerely,

 

Ashley Cole

University Counselor

 

Morning Meeting for Parents-

Our morning meeting for parents will be on Wed. May 17th at 8:30 AM. This month’s topic is How to Promote Yourself to Universities. We will be discussing the college application resume/ activity sheet. We will also discuss the importance/ reason for interviews, campus visits, and communicating with the universities in person, by email, and by phone. If your student is planning to apply to highly selective institutions, this is going to be a critical piece of the application process. Large conference room, Administration Building.

 

College Night at Rochambeau-

 

May 23rd, 6PM (lycee auditorium will open at 5:45). Parents recently received an invitation by email about college night. Please join me as I give a general overview of the admissions process, discuss important timelines and dates, what your expectations should be of the University Counselor and Registrar, and what will be expected of you. We will discuss myths and debunk them, we will explore some college data, and I will discuss what you need to do this year, next year or beyond to get into the school of your choice. It is a VERY important event for Premieres and parents who are planning to apply to schools in the US, Canada and UK, and I wanted to extend the invitation to all students as many have come in to discuss early planning, which is fantastic.

 

We need to have a little fun too… so we will be starting a new tradition at college night this year (I can’t give you all the surprises but please, bring your school spirit!). I look forward to personally shaking hands with each of you, and we have to practice those handshakes for when you meet admissions reps. I’ll see you at the door!

 

 

“Take a College Road Trip” With Your University Counselor-

 

I will be leaving for NYC very early tomorrow for a day-long event at NYU, and will also be visiting the New School, Columbia University and Barnard College. I’m armed with an iPad and will be sharing details of the trip with you. When you see this email, please take some time to read it, especially if you are interested in any of these schools, never heard of these schools, or have an interest in studying in NYC. I am fortunate to be able to travel out to gather updates, stay on top of trends in admissions, and explore these campuses. I am excited to represent Rochambeau and network with admissions staff. Please take advantage of this benefit as well, because I will be turning this information over to you so we are all learning and navigating together. While I am gone, I will be on campuses all day Thursday, Friday and Saturday. I will check emails throughout the day and will respond as soon as I am able. I will be back in my office on Monday morning, May 15th.

 

 

Universities Coming to the Local Area for Information Sessions

 

 

An Evening with University of Cambridge – MAY 18- at the British International School

The University of Cambridge is one of the world's greatest universities, providing a challenging, flexible and individual learning experience. Consistently rated at the top of national and international league tables, many of our degree courses encompass several subjects, starting off broadly before becoming increasingly focused in later years.

As a 'collegiate' university, Cambridge is made up of various faculties and departments in different academic subjects, and a number of Colleges. Students, as well as being a member of the University and a faculty/department, also belong to a smaller College community. This system offers a huge amount of pastoral and academic support for each student, providing a place for them to live, study and socialise. One of the advantages of studying at Cambridge is our emphasis on small-group tuition, known as 'supervisions', in addition to lectures, practicals and seminars. Supervisions allow students to explore course material and new approaches in greater depth, while getting regular, individual feedback.

 

There are limited spaces available to attend and you must register in advance All 70 seats for the British School are filled, and those for us are filling quickly. Our students and families have been invited to attend by the British International School. I will be attending. If you mentioned Cambridge and it is on your list, I expect to see you there! It is in DC, about a 25-30 minute drive, but you should be able to get there for the 6PM start (even if you are a few minutes late). You can register here. At the time of this newsletter only 89 tickets remain for non BISW students and families:

https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/evening-with-university-of-cambridge-tickets-34071863862

 

An Evening with Dartmouth College, Northwestern University, Princeton University, University of California, Berkeley, Vanderbilt University- JUNE 4- JW Marriott Washington DC

Admissions representatives from the schools above will be hosting an admissions information session on June 4th in Washington DC.  These are five highly selective universities and it would benefit you in the admissions process to attend this event. They will also be in Baltimore the following evening. Many of you have named these as schools of interest. I will also be attending this event. If you are planning to apply to these schools, I’d strongly recommend you attend their event. I’ll see you there. Register here:

www.coasttocoasttour.org

 

 

Updates by Class:

 

 UPDATES FOR TERMINALE STUDENTS:

-   If you haven’t already, please send me your university decision worksheet letting us know your college admission decisions and where you will be attending (for US/ UK/ Canada)

 

-   Please respond to my email from yesterday if you are interested in participating

 

-   GOOD LUCK on exams!

 

UPDATES FOR PREMIERE STUDENTS

 

Essay Writing Workshop for Premieres

-   I am very happy to see such extreme interest in the Essay Writing Workshop that Mme Finney and I will be leading in June. We have only one remaining slot. If you signed up and are not able/ not planning to be present at ALL FIVE sessions that week, please let me know so we can make your slot available to another student. It is important to attend all of them to get the true benefit of the workshop and each day will fold into the next day’s topic. Sign Up Here: http://www.signupgenius.com/go/5080e4eafa62da7f94-college

 

-   If you haven’t already, make an appointment with me to discuss your college plans before you leave for summer

 

 

-   It’s been great having you and your families in my office to discuss your preliminary college plans. Many of you exude passion about the college process and that is fantastic. Some of you are still navigating and figuring out a potential path (which is also VERY GOOD). We are going to have a wonderful year together as we move through the process. Keep coming to see me, keep me updated on your plans and accomplishments and start thinking about how you are going to prepare yourself for the large amount of time, energy and focus that will be required to achieve admission to your first choice school. Please plan to attend college night on May 23rd, it will be geared toward your group as you will be the next to apply. I will be sharing a lot of information about timelines, expectations, and what you need to be doing. 

 

-   There will be an SAT date on August 26th this year (previously it was September). The following exam is in October. If you have a busy summer register for the exam now so it is on your calendar.  Registration deadline is July 28th. I strongly suggest the August date, especially if you have not tested yet and know you will need it, or if you are planning to apply Early Decision or Early Action to any schools so that scores are in on time.

 

-   Visit some universities this summer if you can… the best way to know if you like a campus is to experience it for yourself. Do not rely on rankings to guide your choices. YOU need to be excited about the universities.

 

 

UPDATES FOR SECONDE AND TROISIEME:

 

-   Please come to College Night on May 23rd if you are interested in learning about what to expect in the coming years. I’d be thrilled to see you there.

 

-   If you have any free time this summer, consider visiting a university or two so you can see what to expect for when you really start your search.

 





College Counseling Updates

  • Upcoming University Visits
  • Scheduling Appointments
  • Expectations for Première Students
  • AP Exam Registration is CLOSED – stay tuned
  • Morning Meeting for Parents – April 12 at 8:30AM
  • Gala Auction Item from University Counseling
  • Out of the Office in April

 

 

Dear Students and Families,


I hope you all had a wonderful weekend now that daylight is lasting longer and the snow has melted! As spring has arrived, our weather ahead looks promising. This is always a busy time for those going through the college process. Some of you are awaiting decisions to colleges, universities, summer programs, scholarship programs and more. Many of you will be visiting universities, or starting to have the conversations about college lists and places to visit. Regardless of where you are in the process, I’m excited to work with you.

 

Upcoming University Visits:

March 31st- University of Ottawa

April 3rd- University of Glasgow

Both will be at 12:30 and will take place in the large conference room on the 2nd floor of the administration building. Please attend if you are interested in either university. Bring your lunch and any questions for the representatives!

Scheduling Appointments

As many of you are beginning to request appointments, I decided that the most efficient way for us to meet and arrange meeting times is through a dedicated online scheduler. This scheduler will be linked here, on our counseling website and on the blog. As it is very important for me to meet with Premiere students and their families first, I would like only Premiere Students and Parents to schedule appointments up until the Spring Break on April 17th. After this, all students and families can begin to schedule. If you are not a Premiere but have pressing issues, please let me know. I know many are applying to summer programs and other activities. I’m always here to help, but it is very important to prioritize private appointments with Premiere students at this time.

The appointment scheduler is open one month in advance to make appointments. Each month I will add in the available slots for meeting times. As this is a new practice for our office, please let me know if you have any feedback and we can make improvements as we go. I think this method will be very helpful for our parents who have work schedules and want to book quickly and see all available options. I’m considering doing some extended or evening hours during the spring so that I can accommodate all families who want to meet, but these will be limited and we can discuss this as necessary. The scheduler is here, and just click on “Book Now” to see the time slots that are available. I hope you enjoy using it: http://universitycounseling.simplybook.me/v2/

 

Expectations for Première Students

Premières and parents: It is very important that you come in to meet with me before the end of the school year. As I stated about appointments, I’m giving you priority up until break to schedule with me so we can discuss your plans. As I will be writing many of your recommendation letters over the summer, the better I get to know you and what you want in your college experience, the better recommendation I can provide. So by the end of the year, and preferably in April, we should meet if we haven’t already.

 

What you need to do now:

1. Book an appointment through the scheduler (you can always walk in with questions but we need to set aside a dedicated time to discuss your plans)

2.  I am working on a short questionnaire that will help me get useful information about you. Once I send this out, please fill it out and return it to me, it will save time during our meetings to actually discuss your questions and concerns

3. Start (if you haven’t already), making a list of schools you are interested in. This does not need to be final, but we need a starting point. If you have no idea, think about majors, locations, types of universities you may be interested in and we can work from there.

4. Attend College Night in May- this date will be released in the next newsletter

5. Let me know if you have any questions or trouble booking a time.


AP Exam Registration is CLOSED – stay tuned!

If you registered for the AP exams you will get a confirmation this week. Registration is now closed. If you did not get an AP Bulletin booklet yet, and would like one please stop by my office to pick one up. It tells you what to expect on test day. After the confirmations, as we approach test dates in May, I will confirm rooms and schedule information for you as well.

Morning Meeting for Parents – April 12 at 8:30AM

Figuring Out the True Cost of College: Parents, please join me on April 12th to discuss financing the college degree. We will discuss the costs associated with US, UK and Canadian schools as well as the differences between financial aid and scholarships. I will be working on a powerpoint presentation to share this morning as well. I hope you can join me!

 

Gala and Counseling Auction Item

The annual Gala is quickly approaching and I wanted to let you know that this year the University Counseling Office will be participating!

 

The University Counseling Office is proud to offer a one-on-one day with your university counselor. In the DC area you will select two universities to visit together and have lunch on one of the campuses. 

You will choose two of the following universities for this Day: 
American University 
Catholic University 
George Mason University 
George Washington University 
Georgetown University 
Howard University 
Johns Hopkins University 
University of Maryland 

You are welcome to bring your parents/ family if you choose; it’s your day! 

The University Counselor will accompany you on the official visits and tours and will point out things to look for, how to get the most from campus visits, what types of questions to ask, and more. 

Transportation will depend on the location of the schools you choose (Metro, Uber, etc). 

The day is valid for one year following the Gala - until April 30, 2018. The visit day must be schedule during a scheduled day off from school (Spring Break, Summer Break, Fall Break, Winter Holidays, other days off). 

Two of these packages are available and this package will be offered to the TWO highest bidders. Each winner will have his/her own day and will not be sharing with the other winner. Please click here for details: https://portal11.bidpal.net/Portal/bpe301114/catalog/item.html?id=58&categoryId=10

 

I will be attending the Gala and hope to see many of you there! This is a “bid now” item, so you can still bid on it if you are unable to attend. Please let me know if you have any questions about the visit package.

 

The Gala website is here: www.Rochambeau.org/Gala

 

Out of the Office in April

I will be out of the office visiting universities for counselor programs on April 3rd and 4th in Philadelphia. If you foresee needing me on either day, please be sure to come in the week before. I will return on April 5th.

 

 

Posted by Ms. Ashley Cole on Wednesday May 10
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Ms. Parliman's Departure & New Counselor, PSAT 10, AP....

In this post:

  • Ms. Parliman's Departure and New Counselor
  • PSAT 10 Registration Now Open - Deadline: March 2
  • AP Exam Registration Now Open - Deadline: March 16
  • Reminder: Test Prep Course - Deadline: This Friday
  • Opportunity to Try Revolution Prep for Free
  • Expectations for Premières


Ms. Parliman's Departure and New Counselor
It is with mixed feelings that I have resigned from my position as University Counselor. My husband and I have decided to relocate to California, where I have accepted a new counseling role. My last day will be this Friday, February 17. I have enjoyed my time at Rochambeau and the relationships I've built with many of you.

I am leaving you in the very capable hands of the new counselor, Ashley Cole. Her first day is this Wednesday, February 15. During my last few days here, I will be working with Ashley and getting her “up to speed” on everything she needs to know. I had the pleasure of working with Ashley in the admissions office at American University, where she spent ten years.

At AU, Ashley managed one of the largest recruitment territories (New York City boroughs and suburbs) and also recruited in Canada. She managed and supported initiatives including: managing and training application readers; revamping multicultural, diversity, and first-generation recruitment strategies; and building relationships with hundreds of universities, high schools, and community based organizations. Prior to working AU, she worked for the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education as Admissions Counselor.

Ashley is currently writing her dissertation to earn her Doctor of Education in Organizational Leadership from Northeastern University in Boston. She has a BS in Criminal Justice and MS in Law and Public Policy. She has presented at conferences in both the US and Europe. She is currently the chair of the Youth Leadership Member Interest Group within the International Leadership Association and serves on the planning committee for its annual conference in Brussels this fall.

Here is a personal “hello” from Ashley: “I'm thrilled to be joining the Rochambeau community and am looking forward to meeting all of the wonderful families and students who will be visiting me as I transition into the University Counselor position. I understand the issues facing higher education, and the ins and outs of the college admissions process. I promise to serve as a strong advocate on your behalf to support, inspire, and guide your intellectual, social, and emotional growth as you find the best college or university for you. Please stop by to introduce yourselves; my door will always be open to you. I am so honored to be joining Rochambeau!”

Ashley’s email is colea@rochambeau.org. After the February break please feel free to get in touch with her. I know you’ll love working with Ashley, as I did.


PSAT 10 Registration Now Open - Deadline: March 2
The PSAT 10 will be offered at the school on Thursday, March 9th, 2017, starting at 8:30am sharp and ending about 12:00-12:30pm.

What is the PSAT 10?
The PSAT 10 is a practice exam for the College Board’s SAT, specifically offered to secondes (or 10th grade, in the US system). The PSAT measures verbal, mathematical, and writing abilities important to success in university. You will receive a score report and information on how you can improve your scores. The PSAT helps predict performance on the SAT, but it is not used in US university admission. PSAT scores will be sent only to the student and to Rochambeau.

Why should I take it?
Nearly all US universities, and some international universities, require the SAT or ACT for admission. This test is practice for taking the PSAT/NMSQT in October 2017. It also helps prepare you to eventually take the SAT later in première. The more familiar you are with the test format, and the more practice you have, the better prepared you’ll be for the SAT.

What does the test look like?
The actual testing time is 2 hours and 45 minutes, plus 10 minutes for breaks and up to an hour to distribute materials and fill out personal information in test booklets. There are sections on the test for math, reading, writing, and language.

How can I prepare?

How do I register?
Submit the registration form and a check by March 2.


AP Exam Registration Now Open - Deadline: March 16
Advanced Placement exams are given at the school in the first two weeks of May.

Why should I take it?
Obtaining high scores on AP tests can sometimes allow students to receive university credit (in US universities), and can sometimes give students a boost in the admissions process in the US and UK. Advanced Placement exams are constructed to demonstrate a student’s abilities and knowledge in a subject. They are difficult, comprehensive tests, somewhat similar to Baccalauréat final exams. A good score can showcase your knowledge in an area.
 
Who should take it?
Students usually take these tests in seconde or première. We recommend that anyone planning to apply to US universities consider taking the AP French Language and Culture exam. For those who speak, read, and write another language fluently, also consider taking the AP test in that language. There are AP language exams in German, Italian, Spanish, etc. Be aware that the AP English exams involve significant amounts of reading and composition and are at a higher level than the other language exams.
 
What does the test look like? How should I prepare?

Use these resources to learn about the AP exams before submitting a registration form. For non-language subjects, be sure you are confident about the exam content before registering for a test.

Change from last year: In the past, students taking foreign language exams had to bring their own tape recorder to record answers on the speaking section of the test. This year, students will record their answers on school-issued computers.
 
How do I register?
Submit the registration form and a check by March 16.


Reminder: Test Prep Course - Deadline: This Friday
Introduction to Standardized Test Mathematics, Vocabulary, and Grammar
Who: Students in troisième and seconde
What: Four-week course introducing students to American-style standardized tests, taught by an instructor from PrepMatters
Where: In the lycée on the Forest Road campus
Dates: Mondays, March 6 to March 27
Time: 5:45pm to 7:15pm
Cost: $150
Registration deadline: February 17, 2017
Content:
  • Teaches test-taking skills appropriate to the PSAT, SAT, and ACT
  • Emphasizes English and math vocabulary, formulae and problem types, P/SAT vocabulary, and standardized test grammar
  • Test-taking strategies include math methods, strategies for multiple choice and short passages, and time management

Submit the registration form if interested. We must have 15 registered students in order for PrepMatters to hold the course.


Opportunity to Try Revolution Prep for Free
As shown above, this school year we have continued to partner with PrepMatters to hold optional test prep courses at Rochambeau. Every year, we receive many parent inquiries on the subject of private tutoring and SAT/ACT preparation. We also receive several requests from tutoring and test preparation companies that are eager to promote their services. While we tend to shy away from recommendations, another tutoring company is offering a great resource to our families that we wanted to advertise.
 
Revolution Prep is offering every Rochambeau student four hours of tutoring in any subject or test prep, no purchase necessary. Tutoring hours may be used anytime. Please see the attached flyer for more information, and let us know about your experience. To redeem: by February 28, 2017, families must contact our Revolution Prep Academic Advisor liaison: Giulia Rinaldis Hollister, 717-689-4918.
 

Expectations for Premières
By the end of the school year, you should:
  • Research and begin to narrow down a list of universities you will apply to. Visit as many campuses as possible and ask lots of questions. See the Resources section of the College Counseling page for ideas on how to find universities that match your interests
  • Plan and register for SAT/ACT, SAT Subject Tests, TOEFL/IELTS, and any other tests you may need for admission
  • Ask two teachers to write recommendation letters for you (for US or UK applications)
  • Contact Ms. Cole for an initial meeting to discuss your college plans and goals, or a follow-up meeting if you have further questions after meeting with Ms. Parliman this winter

Students are expected to have an intentional, thought-through list of colleges and universities to turn in by the end of September of terminale. It takes time for us to compile all your documents, so we expect families to adhere to the Rochambeau University Counseling deadlines.



Best wishes for the rest of the school year and beyond! It’s been a pleasure to work with you.

-Ms. Parliman

Posted by on Monday February 13
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University Visits, Community Service, Première Planning, etc.

In this post:

  • University Visit: Florida Institute of Technology - February 6
  • University of Edinburgh - Information Session - March 5
  • Follow-up from Morning Meeting on Community Service
  • Premières: Planning for College
  • Reminder: Test Prep Course - Registration Open
  • Terminales: Second Trimester Grades
  • Summer Volunteer Program Opportunity


University Visit: Florida Institute of Technology - February 6
A representative from FIT will visit Rochambeau. Students are invited to come meet with her to learn about the institution.

Date: Monday, February 6
Time: 12:30pm
Location: Administration Building, La Grande Salle de Reunion (room 212, upstairs)

University of Edinburgh - Information Session - March 5
Enjoy an introduction to the University and city of Edinburgh, and information on academic structure, accommodation, student funding, visas, and the student experience. You’ll also hear from alumni and have the opportunity to ask questions. All prospective students are welcome, although these sessions are specifically designed for current applicants and offer-holders.

Date: Sunday, March 5
Time: 2:00 to 4:00pm
Location: National Cathedral School, Hearst Auditorium, 3612 Woodley Road NW,
Washington, DC 20016
Register

Follow-up from Morning Meeting on Community Service
Thank you to the parents who joined the January 25 meeting on community service and extracurricular activities. Summary from the meeting.

Premières: Planning for College
Are you considering applying to US colleges in the fall? Most US universities require students to submit scores from either SAT or ACT, and sometimes SAT Subject Tests. The Standardized Test Information document includes a calendar of suggested testing dates.

Première students and families who have not yet met with me are encouraged to schedule an appointment to discuss a personalized college plan. Also see the timeline for current premières of items they should be thinking about starting in the spring.

Reminder: Test Prep Course - Registration Open
Introduction to Standardized Test Mathematics, Vocabulary, and Grammar
Who: Students in troisième and seconde
What: Four-week course introducing students to American-style standardized tests, taught by an instructor from PrepMatters
Where: In the lycée on the Forest Road campus
Dates: Mondays, March 6 to March 27
Time: 5:45pm to 7:15pm
Cost: $150
Registration deadline: February 17, 2017
Content:

  • Teaches test-taking skills appropriate to the PSAT, SAT, and ACT
  • Emphasizes English and math vocabulary, formulae and problem types, P/SAT vocabulary, and standardized test grammar
  • Test-taking strategies include math methods, strategies for multiple choice and short passages, and time management

Submit the registration form. We must have 15 registered students in order for PrepMatters to hold the course.

Terminales: Second Trimester Grades

As noted in the last newsletters, mid-year reports and transcripts have already been sent to US universities. That transcript includes your first-trimester grades and is usually sufficient. However, some universities may ask for second-trimester grades, too--particularly if you have been deferred from the early applicant pool, or if your grades are not as high as the university would like to see. If any of your institutions specifically contact you to request second trimester grades, you must let Mme. Bessaha and/or Ms. Parliman know.  

Summer Volunteer Program Opportunity
The WAMU 88.5 Summer of Service volunteer program gives rising or graduating terminales the unique opportunity to work behind the scenes with WAMU staff in the fast-paced and exciting world of public radio. Participants will gain job skills and increase their knowledge of public broadcasting. Two openings are available for Digital Media Producer, producing multimedia stories. This is a great opportunity for students interested in broadcasting or journalism.

Program runs June 23 to August 5, with four days of service per week, 20 hours per week total.
Application deadline: March 31
Apply: http://wamu.org/volunteer/summer-of-service/

Posted by on Monday January 30
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Mid-Year Grades, University Activities, and More

In this post:

  • Terminales: Mid-Year Grades
  • Terminales: UC Application Verification
  • Test Prep Course - Registration Open
  • University of Warwick - Visit to Rochambeau and Meetings with Representative
  • Canadian University Mini Fair - January 24
  • Morning Meeting for Parents - January 25
  • Premières: Meetings with Ms. Parliman
  • USA Gap Year Fair - February 8
  • Princeton Prize in Race Relations - Application due January 31
  • New Process for Requesting Accommodations for College Board Tests (SAT, AP, etc.)
  • Summer Programs


Terminales: Mid-Year Grades
Most US universities require a “mid-year report” as part of the application. Counseling sends this report along with an updated transcript that includes your first-trimester grades. The report is very basic and simply asks whether there have been any notable changes since the initial transcript (change in course load, for example). Universities want to make sure you are still doing well in your courses, and that you are maintaining the same level of academic achievement that you showed in your application. Remember, it’s important to keep your grades up through the end of the school year! Also be sure to check your application status with each university to ensure they have received all your required documents. Some institutions will send emails to students about incomplete files and needed items, but not all institutions do this. Check each university’s “applicant portal,” or call the admissions office.

Terminales: UC Application Verification
Some students who applied to University of California campuses were randomly selected to verify information in their application. Those selected were notified by UC by the end of December. The deadline to respond is January 31st. Failure to respond to the request by the deadline will result in cancellation of the application, so be sure to respond to any requests from universities.

Test Prep Course - Registration Open
Introduction to Standardized Test Mathematics, Vocabulary, and Grammar
Who: Students in troisième and seconde
What: Four-week course introducing students to American-style standardized tests, taught by an instructor from PrepMatters
Where: In the lycée on the Forest Road campus
Dates: Mondays, March 6 to March 27
Time: 5:45pm to 7:15pm
Cost: $150
Registration deadline: February 17, 2017
Content:

  • Teaches test-taking skills appropriate to the PSAT, SAT, and ACT
  • Emphasizes English and math vocabulary, formulae and problem types, P/SAT vocabulary, and standardized test grammar
  • Test-taking strategies include math methods, strategies for multiple choice and short passages, and time management

Submit the registration form. We must have 15 registered students in order for PrepMatters to hold the course.
 
University of Warwick - Visit to Rochambeau and Meetings with Representative
Ms. Gemma Barber, School Liaison Officer at the University of Warwick, will visit Rochambeau. Students are invited to come meet with her to learn about the institution.
Date: Thursday, January 26th
Time: 12:45pm
Location: Administration Building, La Grande Salle de Reunion (room 212, upstairs)

Ms. Barber is also offering individual counseling appointments with students off-campus.
Date: Friday, January 27th
Time: Evening appointments available between 5pm and 8pm
Location: Lobby of the Dupont Circle Hotel, 1500 New Hampshire Ave NW, Washington, DC
Contact Ms. Barber to arrange an appointment.

Canadian University Mini Fair - January 24
Concordia, Bishop’s, Queen’s, and Guelph
Tuesday, January 24th
6:00 to 7:30pm
Library/CDI
Several excellent Canadian universities will visit Rochambeau. Students and parents are invited to learn more about these institutions. Meet the admissions representatives, collect informational materials, and ask questions.
Register

Morning Meeting for Parents - January 25
The next meeting for parents wishing to learn more about non-French university admissions is Wednesday, January 25 at 8:30am in the large conference room, administration building (room 212). Topic: community service and extracurricular activities. Richard Tripp, Dean of Students, will join me in leading this discussion.

Mark your calendar for future meetings:
March 10 (FRIDAY): Tailoring your college search to you
April 12: What is the actual cost of college?
May 17: Teacher recommendation letters (topic previously discussed in March 2016)

Premières: Meetings with Ms. Parliman
This spring, I would like to have an individual, personalized meeting with families of all students currently in première. Because every student has different needs and varying levels of knowledge about the college process, it is important for us to meet in person (if we haven’t already) to answer any questions or concerns and for me to get to know students better. I’m happy to meet with students and parents either together or separately. Please email me to arrange a time to meet in my office.

USA Gap Year Fair - February 8
Learn about skills-based gap year, semester, and summer programs.
Date: Wednesday, February 8th
Time: 6:00 to 8:30pm
Location: Richard Montgomery High School, 250 Richard Montgomery Drive, Rockville, MD
Register

Princeton Prize in Race Relations - Application due January 31
Students in grades troisième through terminale may apply for the Princeton Prize in Race Relations. The program recognizes and rewards students who have had a significant positive effect on race relations in their schools or communities through their volunteer efforts. Recipients have stood up to intolerance, worked towards greater inclusivity, and encouraged understanding and harmony in their communities.

The application process is two-part: one part to be completed by the student, and one by a sponsor (a teacher, advisor, community or religious leader, or other responsible adult, who is not related to you, and who oversaw your project or who has directly witnessed your project's outcome). Both parts are due by January 31. More information.

New Process for Requesting Accommodations for College Board Tests (SAT, AP, etc.)
Does your student have a learning difference, receive extra time during school tests, or have another special circumstance? I serve as the school's "SSD" (Services for Students with Disabilities) coordinator and work with families whose students need accommodations for College Board exams (PSAT, SAT, SAT Subject Tests, AP). Accommodations could include extra time, testing in a separate room from other students, extra breaks, etc.

The College Board has recently streamlined the request process. In most cases, if your student already has a “personalized education/support plan” in place at Rochambeau, you will not have to provide extra documentation when requesting accommodations. Families notify me of the need to make a request, I work with them to gather any necessary documentation, and I submit a request to the College Board.

If your student may need to take any College Board tests, please contact me to start the request process as soon as possible.

Summer Programs
As you start to think about college, you might consider completing a summer college program. Some programs give the opportunity to earn college credit (which can be transferred and applied to your university of choice). Living on a college campus for a few weeks is a great way to get a feel for what college will be like.

See this list of some program options, although it is by no means exhaustive. Also see this list by FastWeb, a resource for researching colleges and scholarships.

If you don’t have the time or means to complete a summer college program, don’t worry-- such programs are just an option. Many students travel, babysit, do community service, or work at a part-time job instead. All of these activities are viewed as valuable and meaningful by university admissions officers. The most important thing is to stay busy and productive over your summers.

Posted by Emily Parliman on Tuesday January 17
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Welcome Back

In this post:
  • Tomorrow: Review Session for Mock PSAT/SAT
  • Canadian University Mini Fair
  • USA Gap Year Fair

Review Session for Mock PSAT/SAT, and Score Reports Available
Tomorrow, January 4, Aaron Golumbfskie from PrepMatters will come to Rochambeau to hold a review session for the mock tests. He will talk to students about how to understand the score reports, overall trends in scores, and the structure of the tests. Students who have already picked up their scores should bring their score report with them, as Aaron will refer to particular questions to help you understand how the test works and how you can prepare to do your best on the real test. Each session will last about 45 minutes. Teachers will accompany students to the auditorium.

Troisème: 11:30am
Première: 12:30pm
Seconde: 1:30pm

All score reports and test booklets can be picked up at the vie scolaire front desk (in the College for troisièmes, and the Lycée for secondes’ and premières’). These results are from the mock PSATs and SATs (which everyone took on November 10-11) and the PSAT (which some secondes and premières took on October 19). All score reports should be picked up by the end of the day on Thursday, January 19. After that date, scores will still be available upon request; but paper reports/booklets will not.

Canadian University Mini Fair
Concordia, Bishop’s, Queen’s, and Guelph
Tuesday, January 24th
6:00 to 7:30pm
Library/CDI

Several excellent Canadian universities will visit Rochambeau. Students and parents are invited to learn more about these institutions. Meet the admissions representatives, collect informational materials, and ask questions.


USA Gap Year Fair
Learn about skills-based gap year, semester, and summer programs.
Wednesday, February 8th
6:00 to 8:30pm
Location: Richard Montgomery High School, 250 Richard Montgomery Drive, Rockville, MD
Register online

Posted by on Tuesday January 3
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Winter Break is Around the Corner!

In this post:

  • Winter Break
  • PSAT (October) and Mock PSAT/SAT (November) Score Reports Available
  • Parents’ Morning Meeting This Wednesday
  • Canadian University Mini Fair
  • SAT & ACT Registration
  • Terminales: Last-Minute Application Tips and Reminders

Winter Break
Following the students’ schedule, I will be on winter break from December 17th through January 2nd. Mme. Bessaha will be away starting December 23rd. We will return to the office on Tuesday, January 3rd. If you have any lingering questions, please take this opportunity to contact me before the break.

PSAT (October) and Mock PSAT/SAT (November) Score Reports Available
All score reports and test booklets can now be picked up at the vie scolaire front desk. Troisièmes can pick up their mock PSAT reports in the College. Secondes’ and premières’ PSAT/mock SAT reports are in the Lycée. These results are from the mock PSATs and SATs (which all students in troisième, seconde, and première took on November 10 and 11) and the PSAT (which some seconde and première students took on October 19).

All score reports and test booklets should be picked up by the end of the day on Thursday, January 19. After that date, scores will still be available upon request; but paper reports/booklets will not. For mock tests, I have a record of the scores. For PSAT/NMSQT, students can set up a free College Board account at any time to access their score report.

Parents’ Morning Meeting This Wednesday
Please join me this Wednesday, December 14th, to discuss standardized testing. Meeting time is 8:30am in the large conference room, administration building (room 212). We will talk about the various tests required for university admission, particularly in the US: SAT, ACT, subject tests, etc.

Please also mark your calendar for the next meeting: Wednesday, January 25 at 8:30am in the large conference room, administration building (room 212). Topic: community service and extracurricular activities. Richard Tripp, Dean of Students, will join me in leading this discussion.

Canadian University Mini Fair
Tuesday, January 24th
6:00 to 7:30pm
Library/CDI

Concordia and several other Canadian universities (to be determined) will visit Rochambeau. Students and parents are invited to learn more about these institutions. Meet the admissions representatives, collect informational materials, and ask questions.

SAT & ACT Registration
Both SAT & ACT are offered multiple times throughout the school year. The next opportunity to take the SAT is January 21st, registration deadline December 21st. The next ACT is February 11th, registration deadline January 13th. Many students take their first SAT/ACT in the winter of première. Remember, students can take free weekend practice tests at PrepMatters in Bethesda.

Terminales: Last-Minute Application Tips and Reminders

  • Paying the application fee is not the same thing as submitting the application. Be sure to click “submit” for each school, and to submit any required writing supplements. In Common Application, before you submit each application you’ll have an opportunity to save a PDF of your application.
  • Prevent panic due to technical problems. Don’t wait until the evening of the deadline to submit your application!
  • Any remaining teachers’ recommendations completed after today will be sent to universities after we return to school. It is students’ responsibility to follow up with any teachers whose letters are still needed.
  • Check your application status with each university to ensure they have received all your required documents. Most universities have an online portal where you can see your status. Some universities email notifications to students if their files are incomplete, but some don’t. So, make sure to check frequently.
  • You must request to have official scores (SAT/ACT, TOEFL/IELTS, etc.) sent from the testing agency to each university, if applicable. Self-reporting your scores on an application is not sufficient.
  • Lastly, if you’ve heard positive news from any of your universities, please let me know.
Posted by on Tuesday December 13, 2016
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Test Scores, Morning Meetings, & Terminale News

In this post:
  • Parents’ Morning Meeting
  • Mock Test Scores Available
  • PSAT Scores Available December 12
  • Terminales: Importance of Terminale Grades
  • Terminales: Canadian University Applications
  • Terminales: Recommendation Letters
  • Terminales: Upcoming Deadline for UK Applications
Parents’ Morning Meeting
The next college counseling informational meeting will be Wednesday, December 14 at 8:30am in the large conference room, administration building (room 212). Topic: Standardized testing information (this topic was last covered in January 2016). We will discuss the various tests required for university admission, particularly in the US: SAT, ACT, subject tests, etc.
Mock Test Scores Available
Students can stop by my office to pick up their test booklet and score report from the mock PSATs and SATs that students in troisième, seconde, and première took in school on November 10 and 11. The score report shows which questions students answered correctly or incorrectly, and they can refer to the test booklet to review each question.
PSAT Scores Available December 12
For students who took the PSAT/NMSQT in school in October:
On December 12, students who provided their email address on their PSAT/NMSQT answer sheet will receive an email reminder from the College Board explaining where and how to view their scores. Students can set up a free College Board account at any time.
Importance of Terminale Grades
Some students have already received offers-- congratulations to those who have! Please let me know whenever you receive admission decisions. I know it can be tempting to stop working hard in school once you’ve received admission offers. However, keep in mind that your terminale grades are important.
The full-year terminale grades will be sent to the US university at which you enroll, after school ends in June. It is a requirement of admission that the university receives your final grades. They'll check to see that your grades are around the same level as the grades on which you were admitted. Universities outline this in their offer letters-- they'll state in the conditions that they expect you to maintain the same level of academic achievement that you showed in your application. Universities reserve the right to rescind admission offers if students' grades drop significantly.
For UK and Canadian university, typically the conditions are that you achieve certain scores on the Bac. Each university will specify its conditions in its offer; for example, "At least 14 overall on the Bac, with at least 15 in maths and science." The conditions are different for every student and depend on the degree program. For a student applying to a science program, for instance, the university would likely require a high score in science on the Bac.
So, regardless of which country you eventually choose for university, it's important to keep working hard throughout terminale.
Canadian University Applications
We mail official copies of your bulletins to each Canadian university before its deadline. However, you should still follow the instructions each school lists in its admission requirements. Many Canadian universities, like McGill, ask students to upload copies of or self-report their own grades into the university's application system in order for the application to be considered complete. You should use the bulletins, in this case-- not the Americanized transcript. Universities will specify how they want to receive the grades and which years/grades should be included.
Recommendation Letters
By now, we should have received two teachers’ letters of recommendation if you are applying to US or UK universities. If your teachers have not yet submitted their letter, please follow up and ask them to do so as soon as possible.
Upcoming Deadline for UK Applications
December 15: Deadline to submit your part of the UCAS application
Posted by on Monday December 5, 2016
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Terminales: UC Berkeley Information

For terminale students who have applied to University of California Berkeley: Please note that the institution may email you to invite you to provide recommendation letters.

The UC institutions base their decisions primarily on the information students self-report in their application. The UC policy is that students and schools must not send any documents unless and until UC requests them. Berkeley just started soliciting recommendation letters last year. Berkeley does not work with Naviance, and Berkeley will not accept documents from us in the same way that we usually send items to your other institutions. If you're requested to submit recommendation letters, you'll need to ask your teachers to go through the UC website using the instructions Berkeley provides to you.

The takeaway is that recommendation letters are not required, but if you are invited to submit letters then it would be in your best interest to do so. Please see the below communications for more information, and let me know if you have any questions.

Sample email you MAY receive from Berkeley
Thank you for applying to UC Berkeley.  After initial review of your application we would like to invite you to submit letters of recommendation to add to your admission application.

Here are a few points to consider:

  • This is optional and not required.  If you decide not to submit letters of recommendation as part of your application, we will continue to evaluate your file with the information you provided in your UC Application.
  • You have the option of submitting up to two letters of recommendation.  One letter must be from an academic teacher.
  • The deadline for your recommenders to electronically submit their letters of recommendation to UC Berkeley is January 15, 2017.
  • Important tip: To be certain that your recommenders have enough time to respond, initiate the request in the next five days. Visit our website for tips on how to ask teachers and counselors to support you with a letter of recommendation.

Please note that UC Berkeley is not part of the Naviance system; please ensure that your recommenders submit your UC Berkeley letters through Berkeley's online recommendation system. To enter your recommenders information and request letters, please visit the Recommendation Request page.

Information from Berkeley about recommendation letters
As you may know, UC Berkeley is again requesting letters of recommendation from some, but not all, freshmen applicants. Like last year, we are making a letter request when our application readers would like to see additional information. Three important distinctions remain: 1) the letter is optional, 2) students may only submit two letters each, and 3) while the student can choose the letter writer, Berkeley faculty policy prefers that one letter come from a teacher or academic contact.  

Results from last year’s letter process are below. Every year’s applicants are unique so these numbers may be used as a point of reference, but shouldn't be used to predict outcomes for the 2016-17 pool.  
In the 2015-16 application cycle, UC Berkeley:

- requested letters from 31,842 applicants, 38% of the total freshman applicant pool,
- observed 27,092 applicants (of the 31,842) requesting letters from recommenders; 85% of those offered the opportunity,
- received and reviewed 48,953 letters from 26,603 students, representing a response rate of 93% (of the 27,092).

Outcomes:

- admitted over 4,800 students without the need for a letter or additional information in the form of a letter of recommendation,
- admitted almost 8,800 students who were offered the opportunity to submit a letter and, as a result, submitted one or two letters,
- admitted 800 students who were offered the opportunity to submit a letter, but chose not to send the optional letter.

The deadline for letter submission is January 15th. Letter requests will be issued daily as we continue to read applications, but our final requests will be delivered to students on December 16th.

Posted by on Thursday December 1, 2016 at 12:13PM
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Mock Test Scores Available

We've received the graded score reports from the mock PSATs and SATs that students in troisième, seconde, and première took in school on November 10 and 11. We are working to coordinate and schedule a review session to help students understand their score reports, talk about general trends in students' performance, etc. However, in the interest of time, students are welcome to see me if they'd like a copy of their score report now. This may be helpful for students who are preparing to take the December SAT. Please let me know if you have any questions.

Posted by on Thursday December 1, 2016
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UMD Visit, Test Prep, Timeline for College Planning, and more

In this post:

  • University of Maryland College Park - Clark School of Engineering
  • Interest in Test Prep Courses - your response needed
  • Timeline for College Planning Throughout High School
  • Parents’ Morning Meeting - Recap
  • Leadership Program Opportunity Still Available for Secondes
  • Terminales: Upcoming Deadlines
  • Terminales: Student Responsibilities for Applications

University of Maryland College Park - Clark School of Engineering
Students are invited to come talk to some current UMD students (including a Rochambeau graduate!) and learn about the advantages of the Clark School:

  • Wednesday, November 30 at 12:30pm, classroom 106 in lycée
Interest in Test Prep Courses - response requested

As you may know, in recent years Rochambeau has worked with PrepMatters to offer test preparation courses at the school for the SAT/ACT and other American-style standardized tests. This academic year we were able to offer an SAT prep course (currently being taught this fall, taken by secondes and premières) and an “introduction to standardized testing” course (will be held in March and offered to troisièmes and secondes).

The benefit to our community is that students can take the course right here at the school at a discounted rate. The challenge is that we must have a large enough group of students for PrepMatters to hold the course. We sometimes have a few students planning for a particular SAT Subject Test, for example, but not enough to have an organized prep course through PrepMatters.

As we look toward planning for the next school year, I ask for your input in this planning process. Please email Ms. Parliman during the winter or spring (deadline: May 1) if you are interested in your student taking any type of prep course next school year (general SAT prep, broad overview of standardized testing, math or science prep), with information on which tests your student will prepare for/require preparation. This will determine whether we have enough interest to offer certain classes.

Timeline for College Planning Throughout High School
Premières and their families should be thinking about which standardized tests may be needed for admission (particularly for US universities: SAT/ACT, SAT Subject Tests, etc.), and making a plan for taking these tests. Many students take their first SAT/ACT in January of première, and the winter and early spring are ideal times to research colleges and start compiling a first-draft list of schools. This timeline offers steps your family can take each year to prepare for college.

Parents’ Morning Meeting - Recap
Thank you for the parents who joined me on November 16 to learn about the Common Application (US application system) and UCAS (UK application system). Notes are available for those who could not attend. The next meeting, offering an overview of standardized tests (SAT, ACT, etc.) will be Wednesday, December 14 at 8:30am in the large conference room, administration building (room 212). Please let me know of any topics you would like to see covered at future meetings.

Leadership Program Opportunity Still Available for Secondes 

There is still time for me to nominate one Rochambeau student to attend the HOBY Hugh O’Brian Youth Leadership Seminar. The selected student will be invited to attend a seminar May 25 to 28 at Mount St. Mary’s University in Maryland, along with 230 other sophomores (secondes) from across the state of Maryland. The goal of the program is to develop and refine leadership skills among the youth of our state and our communities. Students will learn about personal leadership, group leadership, and leadership for society. Please see the HOBY website for more information.

To be considered to be our school’s representative, by the end of the day on Monday, November 28, students should email me and respond to the following:
“In 100 words or fewer, please describe the most rewarding and challenging aspect of being a leader at Rochambeau and in your community.”

The selected student will have demonstrated or potential leadership, outstanding communication skills, strong decision-making skills, sensitivity to the needs of others, courage to speak out, and participation and/or interest in community service.

Most expenses for the seminar are paid by local organizations. If selected, your family will be responsible for paying the $195 registration fee by check to HOBY International; this payment will be due to Ms. Parliman by Wednesday, November 30 to ensure the student’s registration is confirmed by the program deadline.

Terminales: Upcoming Deadlines for University of California and UK Applications
November 30: Deadline to submit your UC (University of California) application
December 15: Deadline to submit your part of the UCAS application. Teacher recommendation letters should be submitted to Naviance by December 1.

Terminales: Student Responsibilities for Applications
By now we should have received your University List for any and all choices (US, UK, and Canada), so we can send required documents to each institution.
Remember that it is the student’s responsibility to:

  • Submit application and application fee to each university, along with any required essays, list of activities, etc. Refer to the attached Application Systems Instructions.
  • Request to have official scores (SAT/ACT, TOEFL/IELTS, etc.) sent from the testing agency to each university, if required. Self-reporting your scores on an application is not sufficient; you’ll need to have the official scores sent.
  • Complete Naviance/Common App “matching” process and select your application method in Naviance (when applicable).
  • Check your application status with each university to ensure they have received all your required documents.
  • Follow up with your teachers, if necessary, regarding recommendation letters.

Have a great Thanksgiving break!

Posted by on Tuesday November 22, 2016
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Choose groups to clone to:

Bradley Campus
Maternelle • Preschool
7108 Bradley Blvd Bethesda, MD 20817
301.767.1683
Rollingwood Campus
Elementary
3200 Woodbine St Chevy Chase, MD 20815
301.907.3265
Forest Rd Campus
Elementary • Secondary • Administrative Offices
9600 Forest Rd Bethesda, MD 20814
301.530.8260
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