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College planning resources

College fairs
College financing
College planning
Online planning
College test prep
Online college test prep
Other resources

College fairs

National Association for College Admissions Counseling
Visit nacacnet.org for college fair dates, locations and participating colleges, and tips on how to get the most out of college fairs. Includes performing and visual arts college fairs in addition to traditional National College Fairs.

Seattle Fall College Fair
The 2006 Fall College Fair is scheduled from Friday, Nov. 3 - Saturday, Nov. 4, at the Washington State Convention and Trade Center.

Seattle Performing & Visual Arts College Fair

Scheduled for Thursday, Nov. 2 from 7-9 p.m. at the Seattle Center Pavilion.

The Seattle Black College Fair
Annually held in October, fair activities include information on pre-college, undergraduate and graduate programs, application procedures and educational workshops on financial aid, test-taking strategies and campus life. Request a registration form via email at hbcufair@scn.org. Information: 206-329-9107 or scn.org/collegefair/aboutfair.html.

Seattle Spring College Fair
The 2007 Spring College Fair will be Saturday, March 17, 2007 from noon-3 p.m. at Seattle University, 901 12th Ave. Seattle. Information: email Paul Sweet at sweetp@seattleu.edu.

College financing

College Funding Solutions Inc.
This Port Angeles-based company offers a "College Graduate" Program, an all-inclusive college preparation and funding service where preparing and paying for college is a joint venture between the student, family and the company. The program includes a variety of resources ranging from application preparation to campus visits. Information: 1-877-265-7737 or preparingforcollege.com/32.html.

FastWeb
The fastweb.com site provides personalized scholarship matching for college-bound students. Allows students to search and compare colleges and find schools with scholarship money. Also provides tools and tips for students to help pay for college and information on jobs and internships.

FAFSA Online
The Free Application for Federal Student Aid Web site at fafsa.ed.gov walks users through the process of filling out FAFSA applications.

Finaid

Visit finaid.org for information about paying for college -- plus a link to fastweb.com's easy-to-use scholarship search.

Guaranteed Education Tuition program

The GET program allows parents to set aside money for their children's tuition in the form of units. The cost of a unit varies depending on the time of year it is purchased; 100 units equal one year of college tuition. The State of Washington guarantees that the savings will keep pace with rising college tuition. Information: 1-877-438-8848 or get.wa.gov

Northwest Education Loan Association

A not-for-profit guaranty agency, NELA partners with schools, banks and other lending institutions to help college-bound students and their families borrow money for college. Information: 1-800-562-3001 or nela.net.

College planning

College Access Now (CAN)
Based at Seattle's Garfield High School, CAN helps promising, low-income students prepare for and earn admission to college. Program participants receive SAT/ACT test preparation, intensive assistance in preparing college applications, help in obtaining financial aid and guidance in making the transition to college. Information: call 206-252-2312, email info@CollegeAccessNow.org or visit CollegeAccessNow.org.

College Planning Network

A Seattle-based non-profit organization that provides information on college selection, admission, financial aid and scholarships. The Web site (collegeplan.org) also lists a calendar of academic workshops held locally throughout the year.

Center for Student Success
The center is staffed by college advisers and contains computers with Internet access, as well as a full library of college catalogs and guides. Funding comes from the Northwest Education Loan Association. Located at 190 Queen Anne Ave. N., Suite 300, Seattle. Free. Open Monday, Wednesday and Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.; Tuesday and Thursday, 8 a.m.-7 p.m. and Saturday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Information: centerforstudentsuccess.org.

Education Access Network
Led by a staff of volunteers, the Network offers college preparation courses at the University of Washington for highly motivated students in grades 8 and above. Classes focus on core competencies such as problem solving, critical thinking, analytical reasoning, written communication, reading comprehension, study skills and time management. The courses are low cost or free of charge and open to public and private students in Seattle/Tacoma and surrounding communities, including Everett, Edmonds, Renton, Burien and Tacoma. Information: call 206-527-8400, email linda.coleman@educationaccessnetwork.org or visit EducationAccessNetwork.org.

Online college planning resources

College Answer collegeanswer.com/index.jsp
Sponsored by SallieMae, presents information on preparing, selecting, applying and paying for college. Test Prep gives a detailed explanation of the different tests students can take (such as SAT vs. ACT) and includes test-taking myths and tips.

College Board collegeboard.com
A one-stop shop for college planning, this site helps students and parents research how toapply and pay for college. Users can also find demographic information for over 500 colleges and use the college matchmaker tool to help pinpoint their perfect school. In addition, the site provides online SAT registration and offers a free SAT practice test.

College Net collegenet.com
Students can use this site to apply online to nearly any college that offers online application. Its scholarship search also allows users to find scholarships based on their individual personal profile. In addition, the customized college search allows users to search for schools by regions of the U.S.

College Planning Guide offtocollege.com
Offers step-by-step advice for all facets of pre- and post-college planning, beginning with K-12 education planning and assessment and ending with building a career after college. It also offers variety of interactive tools including a college calculator.

College Source collegesource.org
Type in your desired college on the site's college search tool and get links to a profile of the college, the school's Web site, a catalog of offered courses and a locator map. The resources tab also has many helpful links; however, you must pay to gain access to the site's 34,443 college catalogs and other services.

Education Portal education-portal.com
Offers a directory of articles and information concerning colleges, schools and career information. The article directory allows users to search for articles (for example, top engineering schools) and browse the results.

National Association for College Admission Counseling nacacnet.org
Includes a "Steps to College" guide.

Peterson's
petersons.com
Offers detailed college profiles, filled with descriptions and statistics. Using Peterson's College Search tool, students can define what they are looking for in a college, including academics and college life. The site then provides a list of schools that match the chosen criteria.

Princeton Review 
princetonreview.com
The Counselor-O-Matic feature suggests colleges based on how users answer questions like "Would you like to go to college near home or get the heck out of Dodge?" The site also has a chat board, applications to 700 schools, scholarship sources and a free, full-length practice SAT.

Preparing for College
collegeplanning.org
Parents can access information regarding debt management and financial aid while students can print out a senior year college-bound calendar and checklist and read about high school courses recommended for college.

State Board for Community and Technical Colleges sbctc.ctc.edu/colleges
Listing and links to all community and technical colleges in Washington state.

Students.Gov students.gov/STUGOVWebApp/index.jsp
A student-centered, interagency gateway to the federal services. Special features include information regarding military educational benefits and applying to be a Peace Corps volunteer.

Townsend Outlook townsendoutlook.com
Features interesting articles on a variety of college-related topics for parents and students. For example, parents can check out articles like College Aid Calendar and Healthy Self Esteem while students look at articles like Test Taking Myths and 101: Intro to Freshman Year.

College test prep classes

Gorilla Test Prep

Offers SAT, GRE, GMAT and LSAT preparation. A 10-session SAT course is available, as is private SAT tutoring for 17 hours. Located at 6000 Southcenter Boulevard in Seattle. Information: call 888-767-7478 or visit gorillatestprep.com

Kaplan Test Prep
Offers a 12-session course complete with four practice tests. Sessions last approximately 2.5 hours depending on dates. Kaplan also offers online courses. Call 1-800-KAP-TEST or visit kaptest.com to find schedules, prices and locations.

The Princeton Review
Provides classroom courses, online courses, private and small group tutoring for PSAT, SAT and ACT preparation. Available in Seattle, Bellevue, Tacoma, Redmond and Issaquah. Also offers GMAT, GRE, LSAT, MCAT and USMLE prep. Information: call 800-2Review or visit princetonreview.com.

Sandweiss TESTPREP
Offers preparation classes for the ACT, SAT, LSAT, GRE and GMAT as well as personal tutoring and admissions consulting services. Information: call 206-417-5050, email ssandweiss@msn.com or visit sandweisstestprep.com.

SAT Prep
Sponsors a 16.5-hour SAT Prep course offered at local high schools in six evening sessions. Summer courses also available. Information: call 425-823-1370, email Office@SatPrep.org or visit satprep.org/2004.

Sherwood Test Prep
Offers an 18-hour, six-week, classroom-style course that meets three hours a week. Courses available in Seattle and Tacoma. Information: visit sherwoodtest.com.

South Seattle Community College

Offers verbal and mathematical SAT prep course open to high school juniors and seniors taught by SSCC's faculty. Students can choose to take the Math Component class, the English Component class or both. Information: call the Academic Center at 206-768-6600 or visit southseattle.edu.

Taming the SAT

Sponsors a two-day SAT workshop from 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Also offers one-day writing-specific workshops and combination workshops that cover both SAT basics and writing. Information: call 800-761-3086 or visit tamingthesat.org.

UW SAT prep
Taught by University of Washington faculty, this program offers two options: a three-session course, each lasting an hour and 45 minutes, or one three-and-a-half-hour "cram session" workshop. Located on the UW campus at the Women's Center, Cunningham Hall. Information: visit depts.washington.edu.

FREE prep courses
The Princeton Review Web site has a tool that allows you to view free SAT/ACT prep courses scheduled in your area; most meet at community colleges and libraries. Use the link: princetonreview.com/college/testprep. Type in your area code, and then hit the Free Events tab to see events scheduled in your area.


Online college test prep

E-Learning Center e-learningcenter.com
To find SAT prep course information, select the SAT prep course from the EZ course selector on the homepage. Courses include a four-hour, online tutorial on test strategies as well as two online practice tests.

Education To Go ed2go.com
This site offers two SAT/ACT prep courses (prep part 1 and part 2). Courses run for six to eight weeks and are composed of 12 lessons, representing 24 hours of instruction. Users can ask questions and give or receive advice at any time during the course.

Number 2 number2.com
This site offers free online test preparation courses. By creating an account, you can access a customized course that includes user-friendly tutorials, practice sessions and a vocabulary builder.

Study Works studyworks.com
This site features courses with live instruction including real-time audio and visual interaction. Requires interactive technology (think webcam) to access. For more information, visit the Web site and fill out online form.

Test Prep testprep.com
This site allows users six months of access to the online study guide for the SAT/ACT/PSAT. It includes one full-length online SAT and ACT diagnostic test, one full-length online PSAT diagnostic test and two essay scores analyses.

Zen College Life zencollegelife.com
Online college reviews and resources for students and parents.


Other Resources

College Bound (collegebound.net)
With its bright colors and interactive features, this online magazine is fun for students but potentially overwhelming for parents. With articles ranging from college fashion and young celebrities choosing college over Hollywood, the publication mixes genuine advice for teens into an MTV-type format. You can also order a print version of the magazine, College Bound Teen, available for $5.95 per issue.

Common Application (commonapp.org)
Download the Common Application for Undergraduate College Admission and you have a form you can fill in, photocopy and mail off to several colleges at once. Lists the nearly 300 schools accepting the Common Application, ranging from Adelphi to Yale.

My College Guide (mycollegeguide.org)
This fun and easy-to-navigate site features The Admissions Guru, who offers practical advice on issues like: How do you deal with a dad who's pushing you to attend his alma mater? Surf the Web site, or ask for a free issue of My College Guide magazine to be sent to your home.


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