Wednesday, October 31, 2012

BC Splash is back Nov. 4!

BC Splash is a rare opportunity both for college and high school students. BC undergraduate and graduate students have the opportunity to share and showcase their passion for education in a classroom setting while high school students are immersed in the college environment for a whole day. They have the chance to explore the campus, network with undergraduates, and take classes in a wide variety of subjects. 

Student Registration is open
To Register for classes click HERE.
Please note: every student attending BC Splash must bring with them a signed liability form on the day of the event in order to participate. The liability form can be found HERE. Forms will be accepted at student registration only, please do not mail/email them. A reminder email with the form will be sent out the week of BC Splash.


This Fall’s Splash will be on November 4th! Student Registration for this Fall’s event is Open

Monday, October 29, 2012

Hurricane impact on college related activities

Due to the hurricane the Guidance Department wants BHS students to be aware of the following:

Tomorrow night's College Fair (10/30/2012)  at the Shriners' Auditorium in Wilmington has been cancelled. 

AND for seniors applying Early Action:

Message from The Common Application: 
In response to Hurricane Sandy, several member colleges are extending their November 1 early deadlines. For the most accurate information, please check individual college websites, social media pages and your email as many member colleges have sent emails to applicants with the most up-to-date information and instructions. We continue to monitor the storm and its aftereffects closely and will communicate any new information as necessary.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Senior Parent Breakfast

On Wednesday October 24 th at 8 30 A.M. in the Burlington High School College and Career Center the Guidance Department will host a breakfast for senior parents. The purpose of this breakfast is so the counseling staff can give a very brief overview of the college application process, but our hope is to spend most of the time answering any questions or concerns from parents about the college process. Please join us for this informative event. We look forward to seeing you on October 24th at 8:30 AM. Please RSVP at 781-270-1780.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Gearing Up for College

Host: Dr. Mark Montgomery
Date: October 18th
Time: 6:30PM– 8:00PM
Location: Burlington (MA) High School Auditorium
Who should attend: Parents and student in grades 8, 9, 10 or 11

If a college education is a critical credential for success in the 21st century, how can I be sure that I’m ready for the challenge?
How should I get prepared?
How can I get into the best college—and make the most out of it?
Much of what we read about college admissions these days sows fear in the hearts and minds of both students and parents.  College admission seems more competitive, more stressful, more expensive, and more unpredictable than ever before. 
Questions swirl:

How will I pick the right college for me?
What is the secret to admission to highly selective colleges?
What if my SAT or ACT scores are lower than I want them to be?
What if I got a C in chemistry…am I doomed?
My GPA suffered freshman year (I was temporarily possessed by aliens); can I still get into Harvard?
Which activities should I pursue to stand out from the crowd?
Why do smart people attend community college?
Will I ever be able to afford to go to college, even if I can get in?
With only 24 hours in a day, how can I be a high school superstar?

This presentation will answer all these questions…and more. 
Looking at college through the lens of the admissions process, Mark Montgomery will share insights about how to prepare for college

The goal is to help you focus more on the fundamental issues of happiness, success, and prosperity, and less on the things that makes this process one of the craziest, scariest, and most out-of-control aspects of American education. 
Come regain some control.  Come learn how you can Gear Up For College.
This presentation is aimed at students in 8th through 11th grade.  But those with a bad case of senioritis also are welcome to attend, as are younger students (and their parents) who want to get ahead of the curve.
Mark Montgomery, Ph.D., is an independent college consultant serving a national and international clientele from offices in Denver, Colorado, Westfield, New Jersey, and Hong Kong, China.  A former college administrator, admissions officer, professor of international relations, and high school teacher of French, he brings a wealth of educational experience and perspective to the process of college selection and admission.  He speaks to audiences around the world about how to choose the right colleges—and get in. 
For more information about Dr. Montgomery, please visit  

Monday, October 8, 2012

Freshman Parent Breakfast

The Burlington High School Guidance Department will be hosting a breakfast for all parents of freshman students on Wednesday, October 10, 2012 in  the BHS Guidance College and Career Center from 8:30 to 9:45 am. The Guidance Department at BHS has recognized that it often takes a full year for students and parents to understand and access the numerous programs, resources, and committed staff we have at Burlington High School. Our goal is to expedite this process for you by discussing topics important for the transition to high school. Please join The Guidance Department for this informative and open dialogue. Please RSVP by calling 781-270-1780.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

College Essay Activity

The below post was written by Ms. Emily Minty  from the BHS Guidance Department

On September 25, 2015, all seniors attended a presentation by a panel of college admission representatives on the topic of the college essay. This event is coordianted and sponseored by the Natioanl Honor Society and the National Honor Society Advisors, Abby Abbot and Alex Allaire.

Merrimack College James Cristiano
Salem State Jacklyn Jackie Haas
Suffolk University Sara Morales
UNH Kristin Butterfield
Harvard Meg Brooks-Swift 
Northeastern University Alice Smith
UMass Lowell Doug Seed

Why an essay?
Only piece that comes directly from you, where you get to speak directly.
Convey who you are as a person and what you would bring to campus community.
Can give admissions rep material to advocate for you in committee.
Puts everything else into context.

  • Draft, proofread, revise.
  • Have one to two people look it over for you.
  • Common app topics on how you overcame a problem could be way to share how you’ve changed and overcome.
  • Feel connected to what you’re writing.
  • Write about something that isn’t otherwise obvious in your application.
  • Be authentic.
  • Focus in on one small moment instead of the big picture.
  • Pay attention to the question that you’re answering.
  • Whatever you’re writing about, focus on how it impacted you.

  • You don’t need the “perfect” topic. A mundane topic can still be a great essay.
  • Let someone else write it for you or lose your voice in the process.
  • Write all about someone else or sports event and not enough about you.
  • Accidentally mention the wrong college name.
  • Write outside your comfort zone or overdo it.
  • Cliche topics: athletic injuries, don’t google “best college essays”, personal tragedies--make sure to focus on how these things affected you and how you’ve overcome.

  • UMass Lowell-- Essay is only a focus if they’re on the fence based on GPA and test scores. Rec. letter from one teacher (about who you are as a student). 1-4 total.
  • Salem-- Admission decision is purely based on grades and test scores. Do not require essay or recommendation letters. Recommend if need to share special circumstances. DO require it for Summer Bridge Academy, Honors program (emphasize time management skills)
  • Harvard-- Essay is the chance to separate yourself. Encouraged to take advantage of optional supplemental essay too. Essay gets read by many people and goes to committees and is often read multiple times by same person. Also require SAT Subject Tests. Alumni interview is arranged after you apply.
  • UNH-- Doesn’t offer interviews, but does offer one-on-one appointments with admission counselors. Rec. letter from guidance counselor only.
  • Merrimack--Since SATs are not required, essay is  especially important. Extracurricular involvement is extremely important.
  • Northeastern-- Holistic review of application, including essay. Looks at Extracurricular activities very closely. Require only one recommendation. Only send others if new information.
  • Suffolk--Look at all pieces to see how student fits into community. Test scores will never be the reason that someone does or doesn’t get in, although there are certain majors that you need a minimum score for.

  • Transcript is always the most important part of the application; to see if student is prepared to be successful in college.
  • With extra-curricular activities, important that it’s clear that you had a real passion for things as opposed to just adding as many as you can. Does not only include school-affiliated activities.
  • Recommendations from outside people can be interesting.
  • Since requirements vary, make sure that you check with each college about their preferences and requirements