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New Salem - September 10, 2008

Counselor’s Corner

© 2008 Dr. Gaylynn Becker
National Certified Career Counselor
National Certified School Counselor
New Salem High School

Important Dates For Juniors
It has been great to watch the juniors grow and mature from 7th grade students to juniors. I hope that you all continue to work hard in whatever you do during both your junior and senior years in high school. In addition, I hope that you continue this throughout your life.

In order to assist you in your planning for your junior year, I have compiled both a list of important dates as well as a timeline to assist you and your parents in your career planning. Please add additional items to your list. This article is a version of what I will distribute to each junior on Friday. Parents of freshmen, sophomores, juniors and others may be interested in this information for career planning too.

Important Dates Events
October 15, 2008 .....PSAT/NMSQT – National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test
October 25, 2008 .....ACT Test Date
October 20 – 22 .......North Dakota State Assessment Required of all juniors under “No Child Left Behind”
December 13, 2008 ..ACT Test Date
January 6, 2009 .......ASVAB Test
February 7, 2008 ......ACT Test Date
April 4, 2008 ............ACT Test Date
June 13, 2008 ..........ACT Test Date

Take the ACT
I highly recommend that each junior take the ACT during the junior year for multiple reasons. One reason is that the top 45-50 scoring North Dakota juniors who take the ACT during December, February, April and June will receive the North Dakota Scholars Scholarship. This scholarship is for free tuition at any public college/university in North Dakota. This scholarship is worth about $ 20,000.00 over 4 years.

Another advantage of taking the ACT late in the junior year is so students will have an ACT score for use in both applying to college next fall as well as for use in applying for scholarships. Some colleges require minimum ACT scores for admission into their programs. In addition, be sure to continue to do well in all of your high school courses, activities and life in general.

Recommendations For Juniors
Here are some recommendations I have compiled to assist juniors and their parents in planning. Please add additional items to the list.
1. Take the ACT during your junior year
2. Consider taking CLEP Tests for college credit for what you’ve applied yourself and learned in high school
3. Find out what you want to do after high school. Choices Planner & various other programs and activities can assist you in this process by:
a. Relating what you are interested in to occupations
b. Relating what you are good at to occupations
4. College campus visit
5. Job shadow
6. Apply for scholarships from Dr. Becker’s Scholarship Lists and from scholarship search sites such as
7. Take courses in high school that will help prepare you for post-secondary education
8. Do your best in high school to maintain as high a GPA as possible and receive as high an ACT score as possible. These are important for receiving scholarships and getting into the college and the program of your choice.

If you are uncertain as to what you want to do after high school and you need more assistance in your career planning than what I can provide for you when I visit your classroom, please stop in my office so I can further assist you.

I hope that you continue to plan your futures wisely. By utilizing your available resources such as parents, teachers, counselors, and of course friends, your goals can be achieved. Have a great year!

For more information on career information and links, please see my Career Planning website at If you have any questions on career, counseling, or assessment topics, please contact me at either New Salem High School at 843-7610, or at my residence at 222-3222.

Have an excellent academic day!