Become a Specialized Student: Get Certified
As we’ve said time and again, college admissions committees are now moving towards a “specialized student”. This means they’re looking for kids with a passion for a specific subject. (Goodbye Jack of all Trades.)
Just because your school doesn’t offer Robotics or Business Marketing doesn’t meant that you can’t dig in to that passion. There are many ways to explore interests outside of school. One way is to get certified.
Getting a certification helps define your passion, and lets colleges know that you’re serious. Side Note: Even the government is getting on board with the specialized student trend. (And we know they’re usually late to the party!) House Bill 5 now requires students to choose their “Endorsement” (see list of endorsements below) during their junior year.
Take Classes & Get Certified This Summer
With the wealth on information online, there’s no reason you can’t find a class in even the most obscure subjects. Check out sites like Udacity, Coursera, or the app iTunesU and explore topics that might not be offered at school. Some of these even offer certificates at the end. (Yes, you should list these on your resume!)
Certifications in High School
Don’t forget that your school likely has a Career Tech center that gives you more options as far as courses of study. Classes like Automotive Technology, Cosmetology, Culinary Arts are offered at many schools and potentially allow you to get a certification and go straight from high school into a career field. You may also be eligible for college credit or concurrent/dual credit with local community colleges. Other courses, like Web Technologies, allow students to take the Adobe Certification Associate exam.
There is no shortage of information (and a lot of it FREE information at that!) that can help you explore your interests. Get out there and dig in!