Things that make me happy

Even though my granddaughter, who just finished her freshman year of high school, has a part time job, is on her high school swimming team, is on her high school softball team and is is in her high school band, she got straight A’s in her first year of high school.

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Fantastic news!! Both of our kids played high level travel sports growing up and into high school and I really feel like it helped them in so many areas:

  • Social skills are so much better than other kids I see
  • Interacting with people of all races and backgrounds has been very beneficial
  • Understanding how to balance school and extracurricular activities
  • Competition and dealing with setbacks is a good character builder

Did they play video games and get on their phone? Yes, but not very much. Mainly in the car in transit to events…

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As long as we are bragging.
My son just got his SAT score.
Probably will qualify for a National Merit Scholarship.

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I know the test has changed since my time, but that’s impressive. I think I got a 1315.

I was doing some looking at scores by schools.
His score is in the 99th percentile, but for MIT it is only in the 25th.

Sounds like she is on the right path.

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@crparrothead -Congratulations on your son’s very impressive SAT score! In addition to being a national merit finalist, some colleges will offer him other scholarships that do not have a financial need requirement.

My wife is starting a spreadsheet on what colleges offer what.

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That’s awesome, she should be proud. IMO extracurricular activities and a job or volunteering is good for high school students, it teaches them time management, team work, responsibility and other important life lessons.

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Something that might not be intuitive. It may be cheaper, with the financial support provided, for him to attend an elite college. Several of them help you more than very good state schools.

That was true with my son who had excellent ACT/SAT scores and a high class ranking, he gets a $4,000 scholarship for U of I (Champaign campus) per year but was offered $40,000 a year from U of Miami and huge amounts from other private schools, but it would still cost him over $20,000 a year. Alabama offered a almost a full scholarship, but he wasn’t interested.

mcarley - Most elite colleges only offer “need based” financial aid, no matter how good the student is, while many other colleges will offer scholarships to top students without considering financial need. My niece’s son just graduated from high school and had perfect SAT scores. He had been accepted at a few Ivy League Schools but they did not offer him any scholarships because he wasn’t “financially needy” while a few very good universities offered him a full scholarship. This was a hard decision for them to make but he decided to go to one of the schools that offered him a scholarship instead of an Ivy League school that would cost a fortune.

Congratulations to your granddaughter. I think that sports actually saved my kid. It got here thru a pretty rough time. She played for the Junior College volleyball team for a year, and THAT really set a good tone for her future. They were super structured - practice from 6:00 am until 9, then classes. The lunch and then the volleyball team required them to stay at the school and do their homework from 1 until 3, then practice from 3 to 6. She got so far ahead that she was able to run a paper past the teacher for input well before the due date. She had a similar schedule at Emporia Sate. The players were required to maintain a B average to play. She was on the deans list ever semester. And on top of that schedule, she worked at a tanning salon all year and at a winery on weekends in the off season.

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Yes it depends on your individual situation. Most of us would consider an elite college out of reach without that aid. But with the aid, they’re often less expensive for a poor, working class, or even middle class family than a good state school (like say, a UC campus). For an upper middle or wealthy family, it might be a different situation.

When my daughter was in her senior year of high school, she was recruited by Rockhurst College (Jesuit University) to play volleyball. They did offer a scholarship but it wasn’t full ride, but they said it would bring down the price to be about the same a the full tuition at KU.

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