Countdown starts

Judson College Admissions Representative Sandee Richardson hands brochures to Holly Pond ninth-graders during the school’s college fair Monday.

HOLLY POND — It’s never too early for high school students to start thinking about future plans and Holly Pond High School hosted a college fair Monday to let all of its students get a look at some of their options.

This week is College Application Week in Alabama, and many of the state’s colleges and universities are waiving their application fees during the week to encourage more students to apply. 

In recognition of the statewide effort to get more kids to apply, Holly Pond hosted nine colleges and universities — along with the U.S. Army and Navy — to help get the word out about possibilities for the future, said school counselor Karen Rowell. 

Holly Pond is a rural area, and many students aren’t able to make a lot of college trips, so bringing college representatives to the school will expose those students to something that they may not have been able to see otherwise, Rowell said. 

“They can’t get out and see colleges as much, so I brought the colleges to them,” she said. 

Rowell said getting college representatives to the school allowed students to learn more about each school’s scholarships, admission requirements and Pell Grant opportunities.

Once students learn that information, they can realize that going to college is a possibility for them, and start taking the proper steps to reach those requirements and achieve their goals, she said.

“They need exposure, and this is the best way to get it,” Rowell said. 

Ninth-grader Ivy Beasley said she already has a plan for her future, so the day was an opportunity to get a closer look at some of her options to reach that goal. 

“It’s good to look at where I could go, because I already know what I want to be in my life,” she said.

She said she wants to be a forensic detective, and the college fair let her find out that Mississippi State offers that program. Beasley was able to talk to the school’s representative about some of their requirements.

She was glad the school hosted the college fair for all of the school’s students, because she and other freshmen are beginning to plan for their futures and need to know what to work on during their time in high school.

“It’s beneficial because they really need to know what grades they need to make, because this year really starts counting,” she said. 

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