Many questions but few answers

<p>^^Great suggestions. Bates and Bowdoin are just two examples of excellent, highly rated schools that are, nevertheless, less selective than a Harvard or a Stanford. He will find wonderful peers at places like this, and they exist in all regions of the country.</p>

<p>I can't thank everyone enough for all of your advice and help. I will definitely look into the Questbridge link and will look up the other schools when I get a little free time. It's back to the grindstone tomorrow. The SAT is this Saturday so I will post his scores when I know. He actually may have a pretty good ideal after he takes the test. It suprises me how close he actually comes to guessing what he made. </p>

<p>I went back to the Princeton Review Collage Match and they suggested that Wake Forest and Rhodes would be good matches for him. Does anyone have any students at Wake Forest or Rhodes or know people who have been? We live in south Alabama so I'm assuming North Carolina would be probably a 8 hour drive. Is Wake Forest close to Duke?</p>

<p>Wake Forest and Duke are within driving range easily...maybe an hour and a half away from each other. Have you looked at other LAC types of schools in that neck of the woods...Furman comes to mind.</p>

<p>Re: Bates/Bowdoin...both are excellent schools, but the OP's son didn't have any "cold weather" (and they ARE cold weather) places on his list...except Harvard. If cold weather schools become an option, there are TONS to add...that have math/science. But I agree with Jmmom...wait until the next batch of SAT scores come in...or continue to look at a few of the SAT optional schools as suggested.</p>


<p>As a parent who was equally concerned during this year (My S's senior year) I applaud you for asking questions now. Previous posters have provided great advice so I will touch on a more pratical topic. Finances, I'm not sure what the earnings limit is for waivers but I would advise you check. The process (Application Fee's, SAT, SAT mailings, ACT, ACT mailings, CSS profiles, envelopes, postage, prep books, visits) can be expensive. If your S is going to apply to 10 schools you are talking 500-700 in application fees, about 120 in test reports (after the 4 free) and another 60-70 in CSS cost. I would advise getting a fee waiver if possible from your school. With a fee waiver your S will only be limited by his willingness to write essays in his college search/applicaton process. </p>

<p>Regarding EC's, I'm not sure how admission officers view tutoring but my S has participaed in 3 interviews so far this fall and in each his tutoring experience has been a long topic of conversation. The other reason I mention tutoring is he could start the second half of this year (and would be able to list it as a Junior & Senior year EC), it cost no money to you, no travel involved and it actually helps other students. My S uses his Study hall + 1/2 of his lunch period to Tutor, its an EC that does not add to his workoad outside of school and keeps him fresh on his knowledge. </p>

<p>One last note on ACT, don't let him do the practice test without a timer, the ACT is time intensive. Taking the practice test without the context of time give him false practice test results. </p>

<p>Good luck to your S!!</p>

<p>Here's the list of most of the test-optional schools: The</a> National Center for Fair & Open Testing | FairTest.</p>

<p>srobin - I'm even more sympathetic now that I know he has 400 +/- students in his class. The chances of his Guidance Counselor knowing the difference between Whitman and Whittier (or WashU and UWash, you get the picture) are pretty slim. And hey, a 188 PSAT ain't that bad! In short, you've got good working material and very little assistance to help you work it. So here's a suggestion. Whenever a significant issue pops up, start another thread in the Parent's Forum. It will be the rare issue that contributors here can't help with. Good luck!</p>

<p>"How do you get them to pick more than one safety or interested in a good match school if there heart is not in it?" </p>

<p>Well, one way is to get their heart into it. My Ds worked throughout HS. Each had a school they really liked, private obviously. The way I explained the need for selecting financial safeties was "Hon, all the money you've earned all through HS will pay for about one half of your first semester at XXX college. So we need to find a couple less expensive options, just in case you don't get enough financial aid for you to attend XXX college."</p>