• Section 1: Staying on Track

    College Research & Application Process


    ”The secret of getting ahead is getting started”- Mark Twain


    This section…

    NOTE: Ms. King, College & Career Counselor, is your counselor contact for all college applications (Common App and any time a college application asks for a counselor contact/recommendation). She will work with your grade level counselor! Her email is katie.king@knoxschools.org


    • Timeline/Outline of the actions you will complete Senior year, based on what you want to do after high school. 
    • List of HOPE eligible colleges and universities in Tennessee
    • What is the best college fit for you?
    • How your SCOIR account can help you stay on track with 2 year/4 year college search and managing your college applications
    • How your SCOIR account can help you stay on track with listing Activities & Achievements from high school
    • Taking or (re-taking) college entrance exams (ACT, SAT)

    Suggested Timeline:

    Summer before Senior year:

      • If you need to, take June or July ACT.  Register in May through your MyACT account.
      • Prepare resume (use SCOIR account - accomplishments and achievements section on My Profile page).
      • Make official visits to college, if possible. Search “visit” on a college website to schedule a visit.
      • If you are applying to UTK, create your GO VOLS! account. https://admissions.utk.edu/vip/
      • If you are a student athlete and D1/2 recruiters have contacted you, register with the NCAA eligibility center: https://web3.ncaa.org/ecwr3/ so you are able to take official visits (note: there is a fee).
      • Draft college essay (if you are applying to colleges requiring an essay) - see Section 2A: Personal Statement/Essays
    • Review your calendar and map out your college application “to do” list so you have a rough idea of what you need to do month by month during senior year.
    • SCOIR & COMMON APP: If you are applying by Common App, take note of the ID number and add it to your application notice in SCOIR. Because SCOIR and Common App are not connected, DO NOT add the counselor email address or the teacher recommendation email in Common App. You will request teacher recs in the fall through SCOIR after you have reached out to them and asked them to write a LOR. Once you have completed your Common App and the teachers have written the recs, Ms. King will send it/them through SCOIR.



    To do list:



    • Check your SCOIR account weekly (SCOIR has an app) to sign up for college visits to FHS.
    • SCOIR Account: Grant the release (allows FHS to send your transcript) and grant the waiver (waiving your right to view letters of recommendation); without this, teachers will not complete letters of recommendation. 
    • Attend/Watch: Senior Financial Aid & Scholarships Info session
    • Attend/Watch: Senior “Steps to college” Info session 
    • Begin applying to colleges this month (transcripts will not be available until the first week of September 9/1).
    • Are you applying to a college that requires a letter of recommendation? Time to finalize your resume (to give to teachers/counselor for letters of recommendation)
    • Request teacher recommendation (and then request it in your SCOIR account). 
    • Apply to Community College/TCAT for Fall 2023 admission.


    • 10/1: 2022-2023 FAFSA Opens! For Fall 2023 enrollment in college, be sure you complete the 2023-2024 FAFSA. File your FAFSA as close to Oct. 1 as possible to improve your chances of qualifying for the most grant, scholarship and work-study aid.
    • Take in school ACT (free) and send scores to 4 colleges (free).
    • Scholarship applications open for colleges (ETSU, MTSU, UTC); must apply and be accepted before you apply for scholarships.
    • Continue to sign up for college rep visits at FHS through your SCOIR account.
    • Complete essays and personal statements. 


    • 11/1 Application Priority Deadline for UTK (scholarship consideration)
    • Complete all other college applications


    • 12/1 Scholarship Application Deadlines for many colleges
    • 12/15 Regular admission deadline for UTK
    • Retake the ACT if needed (national test date) for scholarships


    • Many private/local scholarship applications open (check FHS College/Career weekly newsletter on Tuesdays)
    • Schedule college visits if you need a “last look” before you make your final decision. 


    • 2/1: Deadline to complete the FAFSA for TnPromise Scholarship
    • East Tennessee Community Foundation Scholarship deadlines
    • Continue applying for private scholarships


    • TnAchieves/TnPromise Meeting
    • Financial aid award letters will begin to arrive; compare packages
    • Many deadlines for private scholarships this month.


    • If attending community college, complete the advising process


    • 5/1: Traditional decision day for 4 year colleges. Deadline to let a college know you are attending Fall 2022. Usually requires a room/tuition deposit (exception is community colleges).
    • 5/15: Log into your SCOIR account and indicate where FHS should send your final transcript by selecting the college in which you will enroll.
    • Complete FAFSA verification (if selected). Requires requesting a tax transcript from the IRS: https://www.irs.gov/individuals/get-transcript
    • Check your college email regularly and respond promptly to messages.



    Categories of Tennessee Colleges and Universities 

    (HOPE Scholarship Eligible)


    Tennessee College of Applied Technology( TCAT) Campuses: Diplomas/Certificates

    • TCAT offers occupational programs to help job seekers train for a career and help businesses build a skilled workforce. 
    • Students attending TCAT earn a certificate or diploma in 12 - 24 months depending on the career path.


    TCAT Cost: Most students use the TN Promise scholarship to cover the cost of tuition. (If you aren’t HOPE eligible, TN Promise will make up the difference.)

    Student Cost: Books, materials. 


    TCAT Locations FHS students typically consider:


    Community Colleges (CC):  Associate (2 year) degrees

    Tennessee’s Community Colleges provide two types of degrees:

    • Career/technical degrees (two years, direct entry into workforce)
    • University/parallel degree (transfer to a 4 year college to complete junior & senior year)


    CC Cost: In addition to the HOPE scholarship, most students use the TN promise scholarship to cover the cost of tuition. (If you aren’t HOPE eligible, TN Promise will make up the difference.)

    Student Cost: Books, materials.


    Community Colleges FHS students usually consider the following:

    Public Universities in Tennessee Eligible for Hope/ Lottery Scholarships: 

    Hope Scholarship: $4500 freshman/sophomore year; $5700 junior/senior year


    Austin Peay State University

    East Tennessee State University

    Middle Tennessee State University

    Tennessee State University

    Tennessee Technological University

    University of Memphis

    University of Tennessee Chattanooga

    University of TN Health Science Center (Memphis)

    University of Tennessee Knoxville

    University of Tennessee Martin

    Private Institutions Eligible for Tennessee Hope/Lottery Scholarships:

    Hope Scholarship: $4500 freshman/sophomore year; $5700 junior/senior year


    Baptist College of Health Sciences

    Belmont University

    Bethel University

    Bryan College

    Carson-Newman University

    Christian Brothers University

    Cumberland University

    Fisk University

    Freed-Hardeman University

    John A Gupton College

    Johnson University

    King College

    Lane College

    Lee University

    LeMoyne-Owen College
    Lincoln Memorial University

    Martin Methodist College
    Maryville College

    Milligan University

    Rhodes College
    South College

    Southern Adventist University
    Tennessee Wesleyan University

    Trevecca Nazarene University

    Tusculum University

    Union University

    University of the South (Sewanee)

    Vanderbilt University

    Welch College


    What College is the Best Fit for You?


    Deciding which college to attend can be a challenge - there are so many factors to consider! 


    Decide what is most important to you in a college experience, along with your long term goals and how college will play a part in achieving those goals. 


    • Use your SCOIR account to learn more about colleges and meet with college reps at FHS, 
    • Visit college websites and take an on campus tour if possible,
    • Talk with current and former students,
    • Read online reviews, and try to learn as much as possible about your potential school. 


    The table below is a guide to get you started on thinking about what’s important to you.


    Type of School

    • Two year or four year
    • Public or private
    • University/research or liberal arts college
    • All male, all female or coed
    • Religious or secular

    Student Life

    • On and off campus activities
    • Athletics
    • Greek Life
    • Student Organizations
    • Safety
    • Student body diversity


    • Urban or rural
    • Size of nearest city
    • DIstance from home
    • Geographic setting and weather


    • Cost of Attendance COA (tuition, fees, transportation, housing)
    • Scholarships
    • Campus employment opportunities

    Admission Requirements

    • Minimum GPA
    • Average test scores
    • Required high school courses
    • Likelihood of being accepted


    • Residence halls
    • On/off campus housing
    • Meal plan
    • Parking for residents & for commuters


    • Programs & majors offered
    • Student-faculty ratio
    • Accreditation


    • Physical enrollment
    • Average class size
    • Physical size of campus

    What other criteria are important 

    to you?