December 12, 2018


As we prepare for Finals Week and Christmas Break, we remind students and parents to consider the tour of Southern California colleges and universities we will be offering over Winter Break in February. The trip will introduce students to many of the schools to which Catalina seniors consistently matriculate in that part of the state. If you have not yet had a chance to peruse the itinerary, worry not. You can expect to see it in your inbox again very soon.


News and Views will resume publication on January 9. In the meantime, we wish our students the best of luck on their final exams and all of our readers a very merry Christmas and a happy new year!

Bank of America Student Leaders Program

This coming summer, Bank of America will provide two civic-minded Monterey County high school juniors or seniors an opportunity to develop their leadership skills and perform community service through a paid internship with a local non-profit organization. In addition, the selected students will join other Bank of America Student Leaders from around the country for a national Student Leadership Summit in Washington D.C. For more information about this opportunity, including eligibility requirements and the application process, visit the program's website.

Jewish Programs Fair

If you are thinking about participating in Jewish-themed summer, gap-year, or study-abroad programs, you may wish to attend the Jewish Programs Fair at Jewish Community High School of the Bay on Sunday, February 10. The fair is open to middle and high school students from the greater Bay Area, and the list of participating organizations is impressive. For more information and to register, see here.

Summer Writing Workshop at Denison University

Sophomores and juniors are invited to apply to the Reynolds Young Writers Workshop at Denison University. Now entering its third decade, the Reynolds is an eight-day residential program that incorporates small creative writing workshops and group sessions with Denison creative writing faculty and notable visiting writers. Participation is limited to 48 students to ensure that each one has the experience of small, intimate writing workshops and one-on-one interactions with people who have made writing their career. In 2019, the program will be held June 16–23. Financial assistance is available to families who need it. More information about the program is can be found on the Reynolds website.

How to Withdraw Money from a 529 Plan

If you have set aside funds for your child's college education in a 529 plan, you have planned wisely for what will likely be your culminating investment in her future. However, to reap the optimal results from your 529, you need to be careful to withdraw the money for the right expenses and at the right time, as this helpful article from Consumer Reports explains.

Of Course It Matters Where You Go to College

Challenging a piece of folk wisdom currently circulating on social media to the effect that "any old college will do," our colleague Patrick O'Connor of Michigan's Cranbrook Schools recently weighed in on the dos and don'ts of building a college list. We second his conclusion that a "well-developed college list reflects the student's best understanding of who they are, what matters to them, and how they see the world. Telling them now that they'll be fine no matter what college they go to disrespects their aspirations, their understanding of self, and their investment in the college search. The college selection process started with the student's vision of what success looks like. It's best to use that as a guide until the process ends." For the rest of O'Connor's blog post, see here.

It's All Going to Be OK

Dealing with all the uncertainty that goes along with the college application process is tough for parents and kids alike, especially once the applications have been submitted and all one can do is wait for the decisions to roll in. Yet, as Collegwise's Kevin McMullin puts it, "We know that no teen has ever suffered as an adult because of one low grade, test score, or admissions decision in high school. We know that no adult is still smarting over not getting into a dream college when they were 18. We know this. The ride to college may include some bumps, but it's temporary turbulence on a much longer flight of life. Transcripts, test scores, and college applications eventually recede into high school memories of our much younger selves, often in ways that aren't reflective of the adults we become. So please consider this: how would you behave if you knew everything was going to be OK?" To read the whole of McMullin's sage reflection, see here.

Survive Application Season With the Family in One Piece

We offer additional an additional bit of balm for potentially-fraying nerves with this recent article from The Wall Street Journal. As author Sue Shellenbarger notes, "Many students labor to meet early-winter deadlines for college applications, often under the anxious eyes of their parents. The resulting stress can damage family relationships if parents fail to set good boundaries and keep their own anxieties in check." Though we hope, of course, that this scenario is no way familiar to anyone in the Santa Catalina community, it never hurts for us all to remember that students are usually most satisfied with the college application process when, as Shellenbarger puts it, "they own the outcome—even if they wind up at their parents' top choice."


Santa Catalina School

1500 Mark Thomas Drive, Monterey, CA 93940