Pine View experienced its first College Consortium, otherwise known as the College Admissions Planning Seminar (CAPS), in collaboration with the Education Foundation of Sarasota County and My College Resource Jan 23. In attendance were 23 college representatives from the East coast, each of whom got the chance to talk to eleventh-grade students in smaller sessions as well as in an open setting with booths on campus.
Aimed to help inform students about the college application process, the Education Foundation of Sarasota County decided to bring the event to Pine View for the first time, having done the program with other schools in the county in years prior. “We worked closely with Lance Bergman and Lynn Halcomb to plan an event that would benefit Pine View’s students, providing value and a positive impact to students’ college exploration process,” Dr. Elyse Chaplin, Director of College and Career Development at the Education Foundation of Sarasota County, said.
Each of the college representatives were paired with one of 23 eleventh graders, each of whom were selected based on input from teachers and College Resource Counselor Lance Bergman. “Those students were selected on various criteria, like class officers or students who have been mentors… they [the selected students] were our ambassadors for the representatives,” Bergman said. The pairing of the student to the college representative was random, allowing the eleventh grader to engage in a brief conversation while walking the representative to their room.
Aside from the pairings, the event itself involved all eleventh graders and lasted around a hour and 30 minutes, starting at 11:45 a.m. and ending at 1:15 p.m. First, all students were brought into the Auditorium for brief announcements before dismissing the students alphabetically into eight different sessions. Each session had two to three college representatives and lasted around 40 minutes. This part of the program was meant to focus on the general college process, including topics such as standardized testing and letters of recommendations. For the last 30 minutes, students got to visit each college’s booth to learn more detailed information.
Although this is the first year that Pine View participated in CAPS, Bergman and the Education Foundation of Sarasota County plan to continue the program in coming years. “It was an enlightening experience that helped me feel more secure about the college admissions process this coming fall,” eleventh-grader James Kim said.