The College & Career Center ran by Mrs. Yamila Dielacher is a good start to explore your possible college and career choices. There you can gather information about career paths, colleges, scholarships and possible job shadow opportunities.
The Counselors and Mrs. Dielacher look forward to working with students and families to plan for life after El Camino. There is plenty of helpful information out there to get your started. Please make an appointment to see a counselor or stop by the Counseling Office during lunch or after school.
Frequently Asked Questions
How can I get information about my college and career path?
You will be hearing presentations on college and career during our El Camino College and Career week each October. In the spring you will meeting individually with your Counselor to discuss your plans and future high school classes. Your school counselor is also available to meet with you individually to discuss your grades, interests, and college & career options. Please do not hesitate to make an appointment! These College and Career websites are also helpful:
California Career Zone is a website that can help you explore your personality and areas of interest and how these can help inform which career path you take. This website will also tell you what type of education you need for the job that you are considering.
ASSIST is a website that can help you determine which UC’s and CSU’s offer the major that you are interested in.
CSU Mentor is the CSU website and allows you to track your high school progress towards completing you’re a-g requirements (under the “Plan for College” tab go to “High School Planner).
College Week Live is a website that is connects students with hundreds of public and private universities (including some UC’s and CSU’s) via on-line college fairs, resources and tips.
The California Apprenticeship program is a union apprenticeship program and is a career option if you like to work with your hands and you are not planning on attending college (get a job as an electrician, plumber, carpenter, etc.).
How can I make sure that I am eligible for a 4-Year University?
To insure eligibility to a 4-year university you must complete the a-g requirements (see resources) with a 2.0 or greater for California State Universities and with a 3.0 or greater for UC’s. You will need to take either the SAT or the ACT exam (see Eligibility Index). Also note the UC’s do a comprehensive review of your college application so it is important to get involved with school activities, clubs, sports and do volunteer work in our community. Please note the each Private University may have slightly different requirements, so check with that individual university’s website.
What do colleges want to see from me? What is in a college application?
GRADES. The first thing that the college admissions evaluator will assess is your academic record. They want to see if you chose to take a rigorous set of classes and how you did in your classes (i.e. have you tried to take an AP and/or Honors course? Are you choosing to take extra years of Math, Science and Foreign Language?). The evaluator will compute your Grade Point Average (GPA) both weighted and un-weighted (your weighted GPA takes into account the bump you get in your GPA for Honors and AP course). Your academic record is the first things that a college admissions evaluator will see and use towards determining acceptance. Remember you can always work on improving your GPA! And senior year grades do matter!!! Upon submitting your transcript the universities will not have your senior year grades (since you submit in the fall of your senior year), however your acceptance into college is also tentative based on your senior year grades.
EXAM SCORES. You must take either the SAT or the ACT to be eligible for a 4-year university (see attached ACT vs. SAT sheet). Once you submit your scores the university will use your score(s) as a determining factor for your admission. It is recommended that you take either the SAT or ACT in the spring of your junior year so that you can decide to retake the exam (to improve your score) in the fall of your senior year. Please note that some universities will accept the SAT II exam as an added assessment tool with your college application. See more specific information under “College Admission Testing” below.
EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES. It is important to get involved with your school and your community! UC’s and Private Universities are looking for well-rounded students who are motivated, have leadership skills and who show a commitment to their school and community. You can show your dedication by your participation in clubs, sports, athletics, leadership roles, community service and notable achievements. Intensive participation in a few activities or projects usually is more significant than lesser involvement in a larger number. When reporting your activities on college applications be specific and detailed about your role/involvement.
RECOMMENDATIONS. Many private universities require Counselor and teacher recommendations (UC’s and CSU’s do not have this requirement). It is important that you investigate each college that you are applying to and learn if they require a recommendation. Note that your Counselor will be receiving a high volume or requests for recommendations. You Counselor is happy to write one for you as long as you fill out a Brag Sheet (see attached) and provide an adequate amount of time to complete the recommendation (minimum of two weeks).
PERSONAL STATEMENT/ESSAYS. UC’s and Private Universities will require that you write a personal statement and/or an essay(s) to highlight a specific life experience. An ill-composed essay may end your candidacy at a given college. Your essays should be your best work and give the college a sense of who you are and who you want to become.
How can I get involved with school activities?
Try out for a sports team or join a club on campus (see attached lists of sports and clubs). You can also try out for a school play or musical, become a Peer Leader, run for school office (Leadership class), or start your own club! You can also explore the Activities page on the El Camino website.
How can I become a volunteer in my community?
Volunteering is a great way to give back to your community, learn about a career, get some work experience and help build your college application. Volunteering should be fun so pick something that you will enjoy! You can become a volunteer by contacting local organizations (see attached list of community organizations that attended our Volunteer Fair) to see about volunteer opportunities.
REGARDING COLLEGE ADMISSIONS TESTING:
What is the PSAT (Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying test and when is it given?
The PSAT/NMSQT is a school-based test and it is given once a year during the third week of October. Beginning in October, students may pay for this test through the Counseling Office. The PSAT/NMSQT has several purposes. It provides practice for the SAT; acts as the qualifying test for the National Merit Scholarship Program (juniors only); offers insight, through comprehensive reports, into students’ readiness for college. It is recommended that students take the PSAT during their junior year, although they can opt to take in in their sophomore year as well (if a sufficient number of tests are available). When students take the PSAT/NMSQT they are asked if they would like certain information sent to colleges, universities, and scholarship programs that request it from the College Board. This is the function of Student Search Service. You can learn more about the PSAT on the CollegeBoard website.
What is the SAT and how should I study for the exam?
The SAT is a college admissions test that lets you show colleges what you know and that you can apply the information. The best preparation for the SAT is to take a rigorous course load. Reviewing the PSAT results will also help guide your preparation. There are a variety of test prep materials now available to students. You may go online to the College Board SAT Practice site (http://sat.collegeboard.org/practice ) where you will find practice questions on each section, and a full length test. Here you can also sign up for "Question of the Day" where every day there is a new question and answer, with an explanation, from one of the three sections of the SAT. You can find other resources by visiting our library, community library and exploring private test preparation companies.
How many times should I take the SAT?
Both junior and senior SAT scores may be submitted. Some colleges and universities take the best verbal and best math scores, while others take the best score you earn in one sitting. Your school counselors recommend that students take the SAT in the spring as a junior and October as a senior.
What are the SAT II Subject Tests?
Subject Tests (formerly SAT II: Subject Tests) are designed to measure your knowledge and skills in particular subject areas, as well as your ability to apply that knowledge. Students take the Subject Tests to demonstrate to colleges their mastery of specific subjects like English, history, mathematics, science and language. The tests are independent of any particular textbook or method of instruction. Make sure you check the college or university’s requirements when considering your application to see if they will accept your Subject Test scores. For more information: http://sat.collegeboard.org/about-tests/sat-subject-tests
What is the ACT and how should I study for this exam?
The ACT assessment is designed to measure high school students’ college readiness and is made up of multiple-choice tests that cover four skill areas: English, mathematics, reading, and science (note that the SAT does not have a science portion). The best preparation for the ACT is to take a rigorous course load and to use a study book or study guide from a local library. There are also on-line study resources available for the ACT at http://www.actstudent.org/testprep/ .
What is the school's CEEB code?
El Camino High School's CEEB code is 053413
How do I request a transcript be sent to a university/college?
Please fill out a blue “Request for Transcript” card in the Counseling Office and return the card to our Registrar. Please list the name(s) of the school(s) on the back of the card where you would like your transcript sent.