College Planning

Many students are very confused about how to begin planning for college. The steps outlined below are intended to give you an outline of the steps that are necessary to consider during this process. It is important to research what each specific college and university requires and to pay attention to all deadlines. Click here for helpful timelines for freshmen through seniors.  Please visit the College & Career Center for help with any of these recommended steps!
• Begin searching for colleges. This is the first step of the college admission process. This can begin as early as freshman year or as late as fall of senior year. Click here  for a list of upcoming college admissions representative visits to SHS. Oregon Career Information System is an excellent tool for researching colleges, state and nation-wide. Username: sandyhigh Password: pio2000
• Compile your college resume. Keep track of everything you do! Write down the dates and details of every extra-curricular activity, community service, etc. This can be something that students start compiling as early as their freshmen year. It will be continually updated throughout junior and senior year. It is helpful to have when filling out scholarships, applications and requesting letters of rec.
• Take the SAT and/or ACT Test. This is a recommended step for all seniors, regardless of what school you are planning to attend — some scholarships consider a student to be a better applicant if they have a standardized test score. You should take the SAT/ ACT at the end of your junior year and/or the beginning of your senior year. Click here for more information on these tests.
• Apply to colleges. Most colleges are only using online applications. You will also need your transcripts and SAT/ACT scores released to the schools you are applying to. Check early and often for up-to-date deadlines of the colleges you are considering. For monthly checklists that will help students (and parents) keep track of deadlines, documents and decisions, check out the Oregon Gear Up website:
Regular Application
Deadlines may be as early as January 1st or as late as February 15th. Applications may be submitted prior to the deadline, so be research your top school’s deadlines early!
With rolling admissions, there is not a deadline, so applications can be submitted at any time. Applications are no longer accepted when the number of maximum students is met. Most community colleges are rolling admission.
Early Action/ Early Decision
Early decision (ED) and early action (EA) applications are due in the fall (Usually November) of the senior year and notification is sent earlier (December or January). Early action plans are nonbinding — students receive an early response to their application but do not have to commit to the college until the normal reply date. Oregon State and The University of Oregon are examples of colleges that offer an early action admission option.  Early decision plans are binding — a student who is accepted as an ED applicant must attend the college.
Apply for scholarships.
There is a scholarship out there for everyone.Click here for more information about scholarships.
Apply for Financial Aid.
We can help ease the confusion of financial aid! Click here for information about the financial aid process.
Additional Resources:
The Oregon Career Information System provides a comprehensive system of occupational and educational information to help Oregonians learn about the world of work and education.  This includes career exploration tools, scholarship search tool, resume builder, etc: Username: sandyhigh Password: pio2000.
You may be eligible for an application fee deferral the colleges you are planning on applying to.  Information on an application fee waiver or deferral is handled differently by each college.  Information can sometimes be found on the college’s admissions website , or see your counselor or Molly Simoni in the College & Career Center for help.