The Career Doctor™
by Dr. Jacqueline Hornor Plumez
Looking for a first job? Thinking of changing careers?
Facing a lay-off? The Career Doctor™ is a Larchmont psychologist
specializing in career counseling. If you'd like to ask a question of
your own, use the anonymous ,
and she might answer you here. Read more about the Career Doctor here.
Contact in ation is here.
CAREER PLANNING PART II: GETTING INTO A GOOD COLLEGE
An 8th grader wrote me the
following letter. I thought this young, long-term planner brought up
such interesting questions, that I advised him about career issues last
week, and this week I want to give him some tips about getting into good
Dear Career Doctor:
Hey! I'm in 8th grade and, yes, I know I'm young! But I'm just the kind
of person who wants to have a life plan. I have been wanting to be a
doctor all my life, but all the sudden I am having second thoughts!
I love public speaking, I express myself openly, and I'm not sure if
being a lawyer is now my destined job. Both of these jobs seem like
the right one. I also am a strong leader. My high school is really selective
and I'm not sure I'll get into the right classes. WHAT DO I DO??
I understand why you are worried about getting into the "right" classes,
because the most selective colleges want their students to have taken
tough courses. So try to get into some of the AP classes. But if you
can't get in, here are some other things that will enhance your application:
1. Get to know your teachers and college advisors. Teacher recommendations
are very important. The difference between a teacher who raves about
you and one who gives a tepid endorsement can be key.
2. Take the tough science courses. This will help you decide whether
medical school is right for you.
3. Take an SAT prep course and work at expanding your vocabulary. Selective
schools want you to have a 1400. (But if they know that your parents
did not go to college, and you did not grow up in a home that expanded
your knowledge and vocabulary, you can get away with a 1200.)
4. Develop one or two deep interests. Colleges are not necessarily looking
for well -rounded applicants with lots of interests. Instead, they want
to create a diverse community with students who have strong individual
interests. So use ninth and tenth grade as a time to try many activities
to see which ones you most enjoy. Then concentrate on achieving some
success or depth of knowledge/experience in the one or two areas you
like best. Try to have a leadership position, if possible by your senior
5. Practice your essay writing techniques. You have several years to
find the right topic for your college admissions essay: one that grabs
the reader up front and tells something important about who you are.
But it's never too early to start becoming a good essay writer. Admissions
officers read 15-20 essays a day, so they appreciate good writing and
a topic that isn't boring. They probably read 100 essays on "How I discovered
poverty on my summer vacation in Costa Rica," so you have years to come
up with something more creative.
The Career Doctor
The Career Doctor™ is Larchmont
psychologist and career counselor, Dr. Jacqueline Hornor Plumez.
Her office is at 90 Beechtree Drive in Larchmont, 914-834-1982.
For more in ation go to www.jacquelineplumez.com.