Palos Verdes PeninsulaHigh School

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Counseling » 12th Grade

12th Grade

12th Grade Counseling Services Overview

College application deadlines can sneak up quickly at the start of the senior year. Be sure to add your deadlines to your calendar and thoroughly research all application requirements. It is to your benefit to do this well ahead of any deadlines. Careful organization is an essential skill for the senior year. It is important for senior students to regularly check their email; this is the primary way that colleges will communicate with applicants.

Throughout the fall the CCC will host several workshops helping students with their UC and CSU applications. Keep an eye out for college rep visits and any evening presentations. Please refer to the CCC website and view their calendar to find the specific events and dates.

It is highly recommended that all seniors:
  • Attend College Night
  • Attend Financial Aid
  • Attend the FAFSA Workshop Night
  • Create their "Colleges I'm Applying to" list on Naviance
  • Attend college representative visits for schools they are interested in
  • Visit colleges of interest
Senior Conferences – September

In September counselors meet with students in the classroom to discuss college admissions requirements, letter of recommendation procedures, and answer any other questions students may have. With so many steps involved in applying to college, this meeting supports students by making them aware of what to expect.

Counselor Letter of Recommendation

To request a counselor letter of recommendation please refer to the instruction packet found in the Naviance document library. In the "Counselor Letter of Rec Info" folder you will need to download two items, the "instruction packet" and your specific counselor's questionnaire. Following the directions listed in the instruction packet, all materials will need to be hand delivered to your counselor prior to the deadlines.

A counselor letter of recommendation is generally required for schools on the Common Application and typically required as well for private schools that do not use the Common App. Please check with each of your school's to see if a letter is required. For the Common Application it is included as part of the Secondary School Report. This portion of that application gives colleges information regarding the educational context that the student is coming out of. The student answers from the counselor questionnaire are very helpful in completing the secondary report.

For general admission, UC's and CSU's do not require a letter of recommendation. Occasionally, some of the more competitive programs within these universities (e.g. UCLA Undergraduate Nursing Program) require a letter of recommendation. Please carefully review any requirements for programs of interest. If a counselor letter is required for a program, it will still need to be requested by the above deadlines.

Teacher Letter of Recommendation

In general, each teacher has their own requirements for how to request a letter of recommendation. It is the student's responsibility. As some teachers receive a high number of requests from students, it is wise to ask teachers well ahead of time. Typically colleges expect the letter of recommendation to be from a teacher who the student had during their junior or senior year. Some schools are very specific in this requirement, some are more lenient. It is the student's responsibility to review this requirement with each college of interest.

College Alumni Panel - May

At the end of the school year several alumni return to Peninsula representing colleges from all across our nation. Having completed their first year of college, they share their insights and perspective with the senior class, preparing them for the Fall. Seniors can ask the panel any questions, generally getting helpful – and very forthcoming – responses. This event is generally fun for all involved and can be encouraging to our students.