Advice for Scholars, Parents and Mentors

On a recent snowy night in December, more than 30 Scholars, mentors, and families gathered for our Albany Holiday Party. Guests enjoyed delicious holiday cookies baked by Albany High School's culinary students, and they heard from Katie Cooney Lesko, the Assistant Vice President for Admissions at The College of Saint Rose. 

  • Katie shared the following advice for our High School Scholars.

Sophomores should:

  • Read! Read anything! Books, magazines, graphic novels. Any reading helps to boost a Scholar's readiness for college.
  • Learn time management: What are the choices you make with your time? Learn how to make the best choices now to prepare for college and beyond.
  • Make relationships with teachers. 
  • Learn what you like and what you dislike. This will help you to focus your time now and in the future.
  • Ask for help if you need it. Sponsor-A-Scholar staff and mentors are here to help.

Juniors should:

  • Explore careers. Talk to people who work in areas that interest you.
  • Your major may not equal the career you want. Be flexible. 
  • Begin making a list of colleges.
  • Start visiting colleges now.
  • The updated FAFSA is changing things. Now juniors need to think about colleges earlier than in years past.
  • Finish junior year strong. This is the last complete year of grades that colleges will see on your transcript when you apply.
  • Ask for help if you need it. Sponsor-A-Scholar staff and mentors are here to help.

Seniors should:

  • Apply to a range of colleges and universities.
  • Visit colleges.
  • Work hard!
  • Talk to the people around you about finding the college (or university) that will be the best fit.
  • Make your college decision by going toward a future or plan. (Don't 'just' go to community college.) Be intentional in your college decision.
  • Ask for help if you need it. Sponsor-A-Scholar staff and mentors are here to help.

Marty Anderson, coordinator for our Albany program shared the following thoughts for parents:

Advice for Parents

  • Encourage Scholars to make their own appointments for job shadowing or college visits.
  • Don't rule out a college just based on cost. There are many opportunities for grants and scholarships.
  • Don't be afraid of loans. Education is a good investment in your future.
  • Get the loan you need. It's easier to get a loan than it is to pay it back.
  • Ask for help if you need it. Sponsor-A-Scholar staff and mentors are here to help.

Marcy Stengel, Director of Development and Communications highlighted some tips for Mentors:

  • Mentors should work closely with Scholars and Families to identify college goals.
  • Mentors can help Scholars to talk through difficult decisions.
  • Mentors can connect students with job shadowing opportunities.
  • Ask for help if you need it. Sponsor-A-Scholar staff are here to help.