Grad Corner

Students from JCOS follow a variety of paths upon graduation. Our school offers students the unique opportunity to explore careers by offering internship, shadowing and community service options. Built into our program, students are encourage to explore their interests and evaluate their experiences. 

If a student is having a Passage meeting on Walkabout Day, rough drafts of Passage documents (Proposals or Wrap-Ups) are due to their Advisor 2 weeks before that day. This allows time for editing before the student shares the document with their consultant. Students can schedule Passage meetings on other days when their Advisor, Consultant and Triad are available, (at lunch, during consulting time etc..) and the Advisor is likely to enforce the 2 week deadline.

The relationship between the adviser is advisee is paramount to the student learning self-direction. It's often a frustrating to watch students struggle with meeting deadlines, but that is the nature of supporting students to become self-directed and learn from their experiences. Students typically need to waste some time and make some mistakes in order to take ownership of their own education. If we organize their time and structure their process too much, the do not truly learn self direction.


College Prep Links

Free Online Test Prep:

For students interested in college, the following terms are important to know:

  1. Early action is a type of early admission process for admission to colleges and universities in the United States. Unlike the regular admissions process, early action usually requires students to submit an application by November 1 of their senior year of high school instead of January 1.

In addition, on, you will find the following helpful links for writing letters of recommendation:



Financial Aid/Scholarships:

The application for federal aid is called the FAFSA, (Free Application for Federal Student Aid). The best time to file the FAFSA is in January of the senior year. Students are encouraged to complete the FAFSA online at however, students can request a paper FAFSA by calling the Federal Student Aid Information Center at 1-800-4-FED-AID (1-800-433-3243) or by visiting Most of your questions regarding federal aid may be answered by visiting Private aid is available from many sources; however, most private aid is “merit-based.” In other words, it is available to students whose performance in high school or extracurricular activities has made them eligible to receive private funds for college. In addition to public aid (like loans, grants, and work study), individual colleges will offer private, merit-based aid in the form of scholarships with specific criteria. Sometimes students who complete and submit the college application are automatically considered for all of that particular college’s available scholarships. In other instances, students will need to fill out a separate scholarship application to be considered.

Scholarship Search Resources: Naviance is a great resource for scholarship searches. Students can access their Naviance page by clicking on “Family Connection.” After logging in, students should click on “Scholarship List” which provides an A- Z index of available scholarships.
  • The My Colorado Journey website,,  is a valuable tool for students looking for financial assistance. Not only does the site provide information about various forms of financial assistance but it also provides links to other helpful sites.
  • There are many Internet sites that may assist students in their quest for private scholarships. These include and as well as many others.
  • College scholarships for black students



College Opportunity Fund:

Created by the Colorado Legislature, the College Opportunity Fund provides a stipend to eligible undergraduate students who attend college in the state of Colorado. Students can find more information and apply for the fund by clicking on the “College Opportunity Fund” tab in the upper right corner of the website.


Scholarship Scams:

Please beware that there are also many scams that prey on parent and student fears regarding educational funding. There are many companies that charge hundreds of dollars for services that are widely available for free. In general, a good rule of thumb in looking for private aid is DO NOT PAY MONEY TO GET MONEY. It is estimated that students and parents waste millions and millions of dollars unnecessarily in their pursuit of financial assistance for college. If you have a question, ask your counselor.


Reduced Tuition at other western colleges

WUE (pronounced “woo-wee”) is the Western Undergraduate Exchange, a program of the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education (WICHE). Through WUE, students in western states may enroll in more than 140 two-year and four-year college institutions at a reduced tuition level: 150 percent of the institution's regular resident tuition. The program began in 1987 and all WICHE states have now signed the agreement. A copy of your state’s signed WUE agreement is available for your review. Students from all WICHE member states are eligible to request the WUE tuition discount.


Additional Resources

  • Always look at the individual college websites: many sites offer virtual tours of their campuses, an explanation of students are chosen to attend and tuition costs.
  • College Guide Books: There are many college guides that profile hundreds of schools. Local bookstores and libraries often carry a variety of these guides.



  • Jefferson County School District purchased a web-based application for use in all high schools and some middle schools. Naviance is an outstanding exploration tool that enables students to not only do self exploration through the "My Personality Type" personality inventory but it also provides a college search tool that allows students to search for colleges based on criteria that are important to them. For example, students can select based on geographic location, program or major, student body size, religious affiliation, entrance difficulty, degrees offered, and cost of tuition. It also facilitates communication between the student and his/her counselor through tools including "My Journal," "My Game Plan," and "My Colleges" to name just a few. Students are encouraged to meet with their advisor to discuss all of the tools available through Naviance.
    • Accessing Naviance:
      • Go to website.
      • On the Home Page click on "Naviance".
      • First time users will have to register using their school ID number and 8 digit birthdate.
      • Returning users will fill in their email address and the password they selected when registering.



College Planning Timeline:

9th Grade:

  • Read as much as possible. Studies show reading is one of the best ways to improve college entrance test scores and help students be more successful in their classes.
  • Take classes seriously from day one of ninth grade.
  • Look for opportunities to get involved in school and community activities.
  • Take time to evaluate career interest areas.
  • Develop a four year academic plan.
  • Establish a high school portfolio.
  • Find productive summer activities.
  • Remember--what is gained from high school will be directly proportionate to what is given to it.



10th Grade:

  • Maintain academic progress; as things get more difficult, increase your effort.
  • Take the PLAN test (practice ACT) when it is offered first semester.
  • Evaluate your strengths and weaknesses.
  • Examine your interests and aptitude.
  • Explore career opportunities in more depth through classes, and/or independent research.
  • Start to explore postgraduate options by attending college fairs, college presentations, and through informal campus visits.
  • Review and update your academic plan and high school portfolio.
  • Take advantage of leadership opportunities whenever possible.
  • Explore meaningful summer activities.



11th Grade:


  • In order to prepare for admission to college, take the most demanding classes you can handle successfully.
  • Continue to be involved in worthwhile school/community activities and leadership programs.
  • Start to sort through and narrow college options using the Internet, and college guide books.
  • Attend College Fairs and College Nights, get on mailing lists, and visit with College Representatives.
  • Take the PSAT. This is strongly encouraged for all college-bound juniors and necessary for anyone wishing National Merit recognition.


  • Schedule an individual conference with your advisor to discuss your Jeffco graduation requirements.
  • Plan for college admission tests and register for the ones appropriate to your needs (ACT, SAT, SAT II).
  • Start developing a list of colleges that appeal to you.
  • Review application deadlines and procedures.
  • Select appropriate classes for the senior year keeping in mind goals you have set. Continue to challenge yourself as much as possible.
  • Plan visits to college campuses over Spring Break.
  • Consider summer activities and how they relate to current interests; academic summer programs may prove valuable.


  • Attend college summer academic programs, if interested.
  • Visit college campuses.
  • Narrow your college list to 3 to 10 colleges that meet your criteria and peak your interest.
  • Contact all of these schools and notify them of your interest. Obtain admission and financial aid information and applications.
  • Work, travel, volunteer, or participate in other educational experiences.





  • Continue solid academic courses and performance.
  • Meet with your advisor to:
    • Verify graduation credits and college entrance requirements.
    • Review college choices and the application process.
  • Finalize teacher and advisor recommendations.
  • Review scholarship and financial aid information.
  • Consider re-testing (SAT, ACT, SAT II).
  • Meet with college representatives who visit your high school.
  • Attend College Fairs and College Nights.
  • Check on Academy and ROTC deadlines, if appropriate
  • Check admission applications and deadlines for the colleges you have chosen to apply to. Complete those with a November, December, or January deadline.
  • Complete and return the Profile Form if your college choices require it.


  • Complete college applications with February or Rolling Admission deadlines
  • Attend a Financial Aid Workshop at a local college or high school if possible.
  • Complete the FAFSA and any additional institutional financial aid forms required and explore other financial aid opportunities further.
  • Submit additional credentials (new test scores, first semester grades, etc.) to colleges if requested.
  • Research and apply for scholarships through various resources including the college itself.


  • Make final campus visits if needed.
  • Notify colleges of your decision to attend or not to attend.
  • Send confirmation and housing deposits.
  • Request that your final transcript and verification of graduation be sent to the college you plan to attend.
  • Take AP exams if enrolled in AP classes.



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