High school is right around the corner! As a middle schooler, college might seem a long way off, but there are things you can do right now to prepare for this important time in your life.
You can enroll as a 21st Century Scholar from the time you enter 7th grade to June 30th of your 8th grade year, and if you keep your grades up and meet a few eligibility requirements, you’ll get money to pay for college! After you enroll, be sure to create a student ScholarTrack account. Your ScholarTrack account is how you’ll complete your required Scholar Success Program activities each year in high school and in college.
HOW THE 21ST CENTURY SCHOLARS PROGRAM
PREPARES MIDDLE SCHOOL STUDENTS FOR COLLEGE
The 21st Century Scholars Program helps prepare students for college, career and beyond. This program empowers them to achieve their dreams while also equipping them with the resources needed to be successful. In high school, Scholars will be asked to complete different activities in order to earn their scholarship. Through these activities, Scholars will also be completing the necessary steps students must execute in order to graduate and enroll in college.
MIDDLE SCHOOL CHECKLIST FOR 21ST CENTURY SCHOLARS
It’s never too early to start planning for the future! Start now to get your career and college plans ready. This checklist will help you be prepared for what’s ahead.
Sign up for the 21st Century Scholars Program
The 21st Century Scholars program offers a scholarship that pays for your college education. This scholarship covers up to four years of tuition and mandatory fees at a state college. If your family qualifies, you need to sign up during your 7th or 8th grade year.
Learn about eligibility requirements and talk with your family to see if you qualify.
Start Your High School Graduation Plan
Talk with your middle school counselor about starting a high school graduation plan. They’ll help you plan which courses you’ll take during your time in high school.
Explore Your Dream Career & Interests
Many middle schoolers don’t know what they want to do when they grow up. And that’s okay! With so many options out there and so much time to decide, it can be tough to think about choosing a career path. However, it’s important to begin exploring future careers and interests well before heading off to college. This way, you’ll better understand what you want to study and what kind of career path a college degree may give you.
There are several ways to explore future careers and interests. Talking to friends, family and teachers can give you some ideas about what might be a good fit for you. You can also look online to learn more about different career paths that match your interests.
Exploring your future career options may seem like a lot of work, but it’s worth the effort. Taking the time to figure out what you want to do now will make choosing a college major and finding a job after graduation much easier!
Learn More About College
Students can also begin researching Indiana colleges online and reading about different program offerings and admissions requirements. By taking some time to explore their options, middle school students can make the college selection process a bit less overwhelming.
Talk to your parents about money
Start saving for college now! Talk to your parents about opening an Indiana CollegeChoice 529 Direct Savings Plan. It only takes $10 to get started, and your account grows, free of taxes.
If you already have an account set up, great job! You can help your parents save by setting aside some of your allowance and birthday money to go into your account.