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The College Application Process

February 19, 2019
By Robbie Watson

A couple of weeks ago I shared with 9th and 10th graders about the pieces that make up the college application process.  These pieces include:

  • Academics (high school transcript)
  • Test Scores (ACT and/or SAT)
  • Extracurricular Activities
  • Personal Interests
  • Job/Summer Activities
  • Resume`
  • Letters of Recommendation

Most private colleges look at all of these aspects, but some large state schools may not desire all of this information. TCA provides opportunities for students to have a robust application, so students need to begin thinking and working on these areas in early high school as all high school grades matter. We have 100% of TCA graduates  accepted to college so we believe these steps are working.

TCA provides strong regular classes, with many honors, AP and Dual Enrollment opportunities. We provide numerous sports, fine arts opportunities and clubs for a variety of extracurricular experiences.  In 11th and 12th grades, students may participate in an internship program during I Term week. In conversations with alumni, almost all say that they were prepared to be successful in college.

Students and parents need to remember that when students apply to college only grades through junior year will be on their transcript because they apply before the grades from senior year are available. Only semester grades are on student transcripts. No quarter report card grades are seen by colleges.  

Because relationships are one of the pillars at TCA, most students find it easy to get letters of recommendation from teachers. We share with students, in various classes, about the professional way to request these letters and even who would be good sources, both inside and outside of TCA, to write them. Students need to request their own letters of recommendation. Parents, please come alongside your student as they apply for college, but let them do it.  They are going to college and colleges will communicate with them so we want them to be prepared to converse on their own.  

It is a privilege to work with your students as they go through this process. We enjoy hearing from TCA alumni while in college and after they get out. It blesses us to see how God is using TCA alumni in so many different areas of life.