College Financial Aid Award Letter Comparison Tool
Just in time for College Acceptance Month, HESC has launched a College Financial Aid Award Letter Comparison Tool to help college-bound students and families interpret their award letters and get the bottom line cost of each college before making their final decision. Print this poster to help you spread the word about this important tool!
Think the Worst, Get the Worst
Near the end of the year, I needed to fill out a yellow "senior datasheet" to be considered for scholarships given out by the school. Because I believed I would never be chosen, I didn't bother to turn mine in.
The day that the school announced the winners of the school, I went into Ms. P's classroom for fifth period to do my job as a teacher's assistant.
"Why didn't you turn in your senior datasheet?" Ms. P. demanded. "I nominated you for a scholarship and you were chosen, but since you didn't turn in your datasheet, they won't give you the scholarship!"
I was so disappointed in myself. I had no idea that Ms. P thought I was so great. Because I thought the worst, I got the worst. I wondered if maybe I should start believing in myself as other people had believed in me. Perhaps that's what it would take to make my dream of college become a reality.
Taking My First Step
My social worker suggested that I attend Independent Living Skills classes to get more information about college before I went that fall. I was very shy and I didn't want to sit in a group of people I didn't know. I convinced myself that I knew everything I needed to know. If I didn't know something, I decided I would ask my sister since she was enrolled at the two-year college I was planning to attend.
Every time I set foot on the campus of that college, I felt nervous. College felt so big and I felt lost in a world of people who seemed bigger, better, and smarter than I was. When there was an orientation for new students I didn't go because I was so afraid of going on campus.
I also had trouble registering because I couldn't understand how people would leave a one-hour class at 9 a.m. and make it to the next class starting at 10 a.m., so I registered for only one class. Later I took a big step and asked someone how the class timing worked. I found out that teachers let students out from classes 10 minutes before each hour so students could be on time to their next class.