Is this the right choice for you? (It might not be.) But if it is, there’s much to be done to get ready.

Wherever You Are in Your High School Career, Here’s What You Need to Do to Get Ready to Succeed in a New American Baccalaureate college

First, you have to decide that a liberal arts college, with a focus on great ideas, career skills and active citizenship in a democratic society is what you really want.

There are lots of students for whom NAB may not be the best choice:

  • They want very specific vocational training and are less interested in the broader goals of critical thinking and active citizenship.
  • They prefer to have their teachers tell them exactly what they have to do to pass the courses and other requirements for the degree they are seeking.
  • Their personal goals do not also include working to support democracy, social justice and an environmentally sustainable future.

But for students who want to be in charge of their own learning, who seek creativity and challenge, and who are ready to prepare themselves to be citizens of their community, the nation, and the world, a NAB liberal arts college experience may be just what you are looking for—even if you have struggled, at times, trying to make sense of high school.

The challenge begins months and years before you are ready to enter college:

  • You need to be a person who thinks for yourself and who wants to be in charge of your own learning but who also is able to work with teachers and other learning coaches to enhance your skills and understanding;
  • You need to improve your skills to succeed as a college student. Getting ‘A’s in high school English ain’t enough. What you must do is to:
    • read a lot — on your own — on different topics (fiction, non-fiction, fantasy, technology, etc.) and think about what you read;
    • write about what you think, how you feel and what you’ve learned—and be willing to work on your writing to make it really good;
    • speak up about your ideas and really listen to what others have to say;
    • work hard to overcome shyness or self-centeredness, so you can take part in serious conversations both in and out of the classroom

Most importantly: be eager and ready to learn about the world around you. Be unafraid to tackle “big questions and ideas,” learn from others, communicate well, team up with other learners, and work hard to own your own education.

It’s your future. Why not take charge of it?