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College and Career Resources

Applying for colleges and thinking about your future career may seem like an eternity away, but it will be here before you know it. This page is dedicated to helping you prepare and plan for a seamless transition from student to scholar and society contributor. If you love learning, we've put together lots of opportunities for you to stretch your mind (and couldn't hurt your future resume either!). If you are an action oriented person, we've also included a list of area organizations that are always in need of volunteers. 

College Readiness

You may already know exactly which college you want to attend and even already have an action plan to get there. However, most students do not know all of the options available to them and do not know where to start when it comes to thinking about college. The US News College Rankings is released every year as a guide to help students. Try not to think of it so much as a competition between schools, but rather as a useful tool for researching the different options available to you. 


US News and World Report College Rankings

Every year, US News puts out a ranking of colleges and universities. You can use their list to compare information about a school’s cost, financial aid policies, admissions requirements, student body and more. Ranking factors include outcome for graduates, graduation and retention rates, social mobility, faculty resources, expert opinion, financial resources, student excellence, and alumni giving.

Career Exploration

RIASEC: Which Career Path is Right for Me?

Uses the RIASEC Career Model to help students uncover the career pathway that best fits their interests: realistic, investigative, artistic, social, entrepreneurial, or conventional.


My Next Move: ONET Career Inventory

You can take an online inventory that helps narrow your focus on careers that seem most appealing to you by answering a 60-question survey. It takes some time, but is fun to see your results!


Online Certification Programs

Coursera: Certification, Specializations, and Online Learning

Every course on Coursera is taught by top instructors from world-class universities and companies, so you can learn something new anytime, anywhere. Hundreds of free courses give you access to on-demand video lectures, homework exercises, and community discussion forums. Paid courses provide additional quizzes and projects as well as a shareable Course Certificate upon completion.

Free university courses (non degree seeking)

Yale Open Courses

Open Yale Courses (OYC) provides lectures and other materials from selected Yale College courses to the public free of charge via the Internet. The courses span the full range of liberal arts disciplines, including humanities, social sciences, and physical and biological sciences.

Harvard Free Online Learning

Browse an extensive catalog of online offerings. You can sort by "introductory" "intermediate" or "advanced" depending on how much of a challenge you are willing to try.

Standford Online

Offers free and paid online course offerings with some potential to earn certifications in an area of study. The "Introduction to Mathematical Thinking" is especially good!


This link leads you to some of the "best all time massive-open on-line courses." Check it out and see what appeals to you.


Service Learning and Volunteer Opportunities

STEAM Enrichment

Check out these additional links to enrichment activities from various organizations and nonprofits in the worlds of science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics


If you are caught up on all of your school work and looking for a way to use this unexpected home-bound time to its best advantage, consider these ideas.


1) Examine your strengths and areas of interest so that you can start to map out a career pathway. Some of the online career finder surveys are paid, but many are free and easy to use. These can show you which occupations might best suit your interests and show you which college degrees or post-secondary training is needed.


2) Check out colleges and universities. Take a virtual field trip to the many options for collegiate learning. The US News and World Report College Rankings is a great place to start. You can sort options based on size, cost, geographic area, and admission requirements.


3) Consider your volunteer options. Of course, with the current shelter-in-place directive you will not be allowed to leave your home to volunteer, but you could start to reach out to see about future opportunities. Most high schools require community service as a graduation requirement, so it is not a bad idea to start looking at options. Plus, being of service to others is a proven mood booster!


4) Take your self-directed learning to new levels. Love to learn? What a great time to take advantage of the vast collection of FREE online courses. Yale, Harvard, Stanford, and other elite universities provide courses online. You can also search for MOOCS (massive open online courses) that are appealing to you. Not only are these a great way to stimulate your brain, they will look great on future applications and resumes.