Rutgers Preparatory School focuses not only on preparing students for the college career that lies ahead but also on the demands of the college application process itself. A major part of the process is for students to identify their strengths, weaknesses, and interests as they begin to research possible college and university options.
The informal portion of our college counseling program begins in the freshman year when students are advised on courses, extracurricular activities, and time management. This continues through the sophomore year so students have an opportunity to adjust and enjoy their high school career before beginning a more formal program. This program begins second semester of junior year with Junior Seminar, a course that meets once every six school days and provices an introduction to the college search process. Students develop preliminary college lists, design a résumé, and begin learning about the application process. Seminar continues through to the first semester of the senior year and begins to focus more on the procedures and strategies related to the completion of college applications. Students also receive feedback on drafts of their essays and are encouraged to participate in a mock interview in anticipation of the college interviews to come. During the second semester of senior year, seniors participate in a series of seminars focusing on the issues associated with the transition from high school to college, and with living on one's own. This program incorporates guest speakers, RPS faculty, and RPS alumni. Throughout the junior and senior years, members of the College Counseling team also conduct individual and family meetings with students and parents.
The RPS College Counseling Office encourages students and their parents to look at the college admissions process as a journey, an opportunity to find the right college match. Students need to focus on where they will feel most comfortable in order to develop as a student and a human being. Students must take on a major portion of the work and what a student puts into the process will, in many cases, dictate the end result. We hope and expect that students and their parents will approach this process with an open mind and a willingness to work. Overall, students who graduate from RPS are very pleased with their college selection and find that they are exceptionally well-prepared for the academic challenges they will soon face in the next step of their educational career.