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MT Parents/Students HS Class of 2013: College Process Sharing/Discussion

jeffandannjeffandann Posts: 502Registered User Member
edited April 2013 in Musical Theater Major
My daughter finishes her junior year today, so we begin the process now of identifying colleges, filling out appplications, writing essays, checking audition dates, etc in earnest. Meet with a coach in a couple weeks to help, etc. etc. I'm just curious who else out there has a child going into senior year; maybe we can all help each other or at least be looking for each other at auditions.
Post edited by jeffandann on
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Replies to: MT Parents/Students HS Class of 2013: College Process Sharing/Discussion

  • monkey13monkey13 Posts: 624Registered User Member
    Me! My D has 15 more days of her junior year. We hired MTCA almost a year ago (on the advice of other CCers), have a list of 21 schools (which hopefully will be shortened somewhat), have completed SATs and are taking ACTs June 9th, and have visited 6 schools that are within fairly easy driving distance. As you can tell, I am scared out of my mind, and I am probably driving her coaching team crazy. I have seen too many of my D's very talented friends not get into ANY MT programs, and I want to do everything I can to ensure she is prepared as she can be. Unfortunately, my D is gone for 6 weeks over the summer, and will be unable to write essays, etc., which is forcing me to do things way early.
  • mom2themmom2them Posts: 347Registered User Member
    Us, too!!

    My D's last day of school was yesterday. So I told her we begin in earnest today! We are also working with MTCA. We have a list of about 20 schools that we developed, but D has come up with a list of criteria and her job now that school is over is to research the schools and grade them according to her criteria. Up to now, I have been doing most of research, etc.

    I have several spreadsheets in progress:

    -D's criteria grade sheet that I explained above

    -one for dates that includes D's commitments and college' audition dates. Right now most dates are based on last year's dates so we know they can change. Once the dates are confirmed I highlight in a separate color. D's high school musical takes up all of January! There's a straight play in March that she may or may not do depending on how many auditions we can get in before...

    -one with audition requirements with links to audition page

    -one with admissions requirements

    -finally, and the one that I started with and have fine-tuned the most is FINANCIAL. Not only are we looking for schools that have great MT and strong dance, that D might connect with, BUT also I'm looking at schools where D has a good chance of getting merit and/or talent money. She got a 35 on the ACT, has a 4.0 UW GPA, 3 APs this year, 5 next year, etc. I feel like I'm looking for a needle in the haystack.....My DH is an engineer & went to instate school, S (rising sr in college now) is studying to be an engineer at same state school. DH is barely accepting of her going into MT, not at all thrilled with idea of her going FAR away, paying OOS rates, and particularly NOT in NYC. So, my D and I are planning to show him NYC for a short summer get away in July before she goes to Pace.

    I do know that we plan to go to Chicago Unifieds, otherwise we can't fit all the schools in. Anybody else?? Hope to meet some of y'all along the way!

    monkey 13: I know what you mean about doing things around your D's schedule. My D is currently in rehearsals for Footloose in a community production (she's Urleen), she is going to Girls State for a week (Is that nationwide? Does anyone else do that through VFW?), then she's going to Pace's Summer Scholars program for two weeks in July. So she will need to do essays, complete apps, etc. around those dates.

    I have to say that after being on CC for four years now, I honestly can't believe its time for us to begin. I am so thankful for CC because otherwise I'd be so lost and D wouldn't have a snowballs chance in he!! !

    D goes to a large public high school outside of New Orleans with a fairly good theatre program, but her teachers don't know much about the whole college audition process. She has had a lot of local success, but she is big fish in little pond. I'm kinda scared of the ocean but we're going for it!!

    Looking forward to bonding/commiserating/celebrating/crying/cheering with all of you over the next year!!
  • MerlehayMerlehay Posts: 225Registered User Junior Member
    Not yet -- D is just finishing sophomore year. But I will be watching/reading you all very closely to see where we should be at this time next year! :)
  • mom2themmom2them Posts: 347Registered User Member
    First casualty of audition scheduling.....

    I just got a copy of my D's high school's detailed calendar for next year and learned that Homecoming weekend is the same weekend as one school's Fall audition! This school only has two auditions (one in spring and one in fall), they don't go to Unifieds, and the spring audition is the same weekend as the only scholarship audition day of another school.

    Oh boy, here we go......It's like a jigsaw puzzle that we will keep doing over and over again.
  • MTDancerMomMTDancerMom Posts: 90Registered User Junior Member
    I have been lurking for about 6 months - but decided to jump intoday!

    My family will be starting the application/audition process this year also. My D is a week away from finishing her junior year. Needless to say, I am excited, but very nervous about this. We started working with Mary Anna Dennard in the past month. At this point we have 22 schools on the list, but we still need to review them in detail to really know which ones she really wants to audition at. She will be in 3 productions this summer to work on her acting – so I will be driving her to finish research and get the essays ready to go. I am worried about the amount of time all this will be taking next year.
  • monkey13monkey13 Posts: 624Registered User Member
    Mom2them, Girls State is here in the east as well....at least in Massachusetts. My D's friend is doing it this year. Ours is done through a college, not VFW.

    We are hoping to go to NYC Unifieds, since we are so close (and have family there). I grew up in NY...it is a fabulous city and I hope your husband will see that! Given your D's scores and GPA, it sounds like she will be eligible for some automatic scholarships (big ones). Emerson gives an automatic scholarship for ACTs over 33 (I believe....check...don't quote me), and I think OCU does as well. So, don't be afraid of OOS schools....you never know what you can get for money!
  • jeffandannjeffandann Posts: 502Registered User Member
    My D got a 32 on the ACT and has an over 4.0 GPA so I can only hope the schools want to give out $$! Seems like our first priority based on what many are saying will be to get these audition dates figured out. Planning to audition for around 10 schools I think so next fall/winter should be a real joy!
  • theatremommatheatremomma Posts: 479Registered User Member
    My son is a junior and we have been working with Mary Anna for a while now. Met with her last weekend to finalize our college list and work on monologues. I actively helped friends last year and a lot of people on this site have given me lots of advice. I'm feeling pretty confident about being totally organized. Email me if you have questions.
  • Times3Times3 Posts: 1,217Registered User Senior Member
    My son's finishing up junior year exams and is actively working on monologue choices as well as narrowing down his school list--it's a moving target but he's at around 15 schools right now, including a couple of non-audition safeties. We are not planning to use a coach, but he plans to get help with monologues at his summer program at Boston University. He's looking for BFA acting programs, not musical theater, but this forum has been very helpful and I look forward to following everyone's story as we enter the senior year with our kids. And yes, we have a couple of spreadsheets, though probably not as elaborate as what some of you are describing (I'm impressed!). We started visiting colleges in the spring of his sophomore year, and that's helped a lot, especially since we've been able to see productions at several schools. At this point, my son has a good sense of the kind of school and programs that feel right to him, and we will visit several more over the summer. He plays a fall sport, so I know senior year will get off to a hectic start; we're still debating the wisdom of trying out for the school's winter musical, which takes place smack in the middle of college audition season. I feel like we're at the top of a year-long roller-coaster ride but am grateful to CC for providing a community of support!
  • md311mtmd311mt Posts: 154Registered User Junior Member
    My son is officially a Senior today. It seems like he has been preparing for this forever and it always seemed so far in the future. I remember reading CC when he was a freshman thinking it all sounded so overwhelming. Now it is here! He has his school list ready to go. I'm sure it may change a bit as we head into the fall but we toured over spring break and that really helped narrow things down. He is using a coach and now that there is more free time he can work on the dancing and continue with his lessons to get his monolouges and songs ready to go. He is going to MPulse in July so hopefully that will help him finalize his song list. We are definitely going to Chicago for unifieds and he is planning to audition early at schools he doesn't love but still likes enough to attend to get the kinks out. I do know though that today, on the last day of school, he looked at me and said "I don't want to talk about college at all today!" Let the games begin.....
  • CanadianMTgirlCanadianMTgirl Posts: 146Registered User Junior Member
    I'm also beginning the process this summer (well, as if it hasn't already begun - I've been reading CC since freshman year). I'm incredibly jealous of all your Ds and S-es who have days left in their junior year. I still have a month left! That being said, my school year does start the week after Labor Day. But I digress. I will be working with a college audition coach in addition to some really great Toronto theatre people. At this point I have about 17 American schools on my list. However, I need to reexamine my personal criteria to determine the difference between an appealing program and a program that FITS ME. As for my Canadian schools...well, that's a completely different can of worms. The biggest difficulty for my family and I is going to be finding a way to get to all of these auditions without putting all my eggs in a Unifieds basket or breaking the bank. My schools are spread out all over the continent (American schools and Canadian schools alike - you will not believe the difficulty there's going to be in me getting to Nova Scotia), and very very few are within a day's drive of my hometown. My dad teaches university, so we're seeing if we can get the bulk of everything done during fall and spring semester reading weeks. Despite all that, I feel like I'm going to be ready and I feel like I'm going to be successful. I have gleaned so much from CC over these past 3 years; I have a supportive team of friends, family and mentors behind me; My academics are strong. There will be difficulties, but nothing insurmountable. Getting there is half the fun, no?
  • MomCaresMomCares Posts: 2,379Registered User Senior Member
    >> ... BUT also I'm looking at schools where D has a good chance of getting merit and/or talent money. She got a 35 on the ACT, has a 4.0 UW GPA, 3 APs this year, 5 next year, etc.


    Based on our experience, the only schools that WON'T offer your D much merit money will be the schools with very selective academic standards - like Northwestern, Yale and Brown. Most other schools will fall all over themselves for kids with great stats, but may not offer as much academic stimulation if that's of interest to her.

    On the other hand, often the most selective private schools are well-endowed, and so are in the position to offer VERY generous need-based aid (for example, Northwestern commits to meeting 100% of demonstrated financial need for every admitted student), so keep that in mind before ruling out the academically-selective schools.
  • jeffandannjeffandann Posts: 502Registered User Member
    We visited Northwestern, and while they commit to meeting everyone's financial need at least some of that is in the form of loans, if I understand it correctly. Their total fees are $61k when you add tuition, room and board, etc, and we would only qualify for half of that. So while my daughter is thinking of applying there (probably has a 50:50 shot with her ACT of 32 and her GPA), she (and her parents) are questioning whether that amount of debt is something she wants to take on after getting finished. We'd help a lot of course, but also feel strongly she needs to have skin in the game. Add in the fact that only about 25% of students get accepted for the music theater certificate and it's going to be a tough call.
  • MomCaresMomCares Posts: 2,379Registered User Senior Member
    We personally know several families getting a free ride at Northwestern and others for whom it's the most expensive option. Financial aid varies with need but can be VERY generous. Virtually every kid at NU had at least one full-tuition scholarship offer elsewhere but NU was their top choice, as it offers a specific theatre/academic balance not found anywhere else (UMich and Yale come closest but aren't the same).


    >> ... probably has a 50:50 shot with her ACT of 32 and her GPA... only about 25% of students get accepted for the music theater certificate...

    The odds are even lower. Only ~10% of Theatre applicants are admitted (15% for NU but Theatre is capped and has more applicants), and this year 15 freshman made it into the MT Cert program, so the overall odds are closer to 1%... BUT that's not so different than the other top MT programs, plus we're CC families so our odds are much better, right (seriously, every CC kid we know made it in to the MT program this year)?

    Northwestern is not a safety school for anyone, but I had wanted to point out to the OP that it's worth considering schools that seem like financial reaches as for some people they can become the cheapest option.
  • jeffandannjeffandann Posts: 502Registered User Member
    I didn't express my thoughts well. What I meant is that, given there's only 10% of theater applicants accepted my daughter probably has a 50:50 chance of that given her grades, ACT, etc. I think she'll apply, but her non-audition backup will likely be at state schools where she would still be able to major in theater or music and reapply for the MT program if she doesn't get in the first go around.
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