College Guidance

Yeshivah of Flatbush Department of College Guidance

OUR MISSION:

The Department of College Guidance at Yeshivah of Flatbush Joel Braverman High School (YOF) is a springboard to our students’ future. Our mission is to educate each student and family about the nuances of college admission, advise students about appropriate college options that suit their individual goals, and support and encourage students as they navigate the college application process.

OUR METHODS:

The Department is committed to supporting each student’s successful transition from YOF to post-secondary educational opportunities. In the supportive environment fostered by our staff, students will be encouraged to identify their own goals and passions and will be provided with the tools and resources to make informed and confident decisions about the next step in their education. We offer the Flatbush community decades of professional experience as college counselors and former college admissions officers. This degree of experience enables the College Guidance Staff to provide valuable and timely advice to families and allows us to successfully help students present themselves to the colleges in the most appropriate manner.

The college application process is truly a partnership among all members of the Yeshivah of Flatbush community. Therefore, open communication and cooperation between all partners is essential.  We believe that each student should be proactively engaged in self-evaluation, college-research, and the application process in order to facilitate a match between the student and his or her collegiate goals. We strongly urge students to take ownership over this process and use this as an opportunity to learn valuable life skills, including meeting deadlines and confidently presenting themselves to others. Cooperation with parents is essential to the process and we encourage and seek communication with families.  In addition to family meetings, parents will have the opportunity to participate in 4-year parent-centered programming in the form of annual grade-specific college guidance workshops. Our dedicated faculty are also available to help students edit their essays and to write recommendation letters for students.

OUR PROGRAMS:

Beginning in ninth grade students participate in programming run by the college guidance counselors which will assist students with the skills and resources needed for success in high school, and ultimately in the college application process.  We work with tenth grade students on issues that include standardized testing and selecting appropriate elective courses for the remainder of high school.  The formal college search and application process begins in earnest in eleventh grade when students are assigned to individual college guidance counselors. We collaborate to identify each student’s distinctive potential and traits and establish a list with an appropriate range of colleges.  We emphasize “fit” while encouraging each student to consider the five critical elements of the college search: Jewish Life, Geography, Academics, Personal Needs and Finances/Cost.  Near the end of eleventh grade we support students as they begin to draft their essays and plan spring and summer visits to various colleges in order to help refine their college list.  At the start of twelfth grade, seniors will continue to work on their applications, revise their essays, work with selected teachers on the recommendation letter process, and continue to visit their top-choice colleges. Juniors and seniors will also be invited to attend meetings with college admissions officers who visit our school. The department will work with each senior to compile and submit each application and related documents.

HOW TO STAY UP-TO-DATE:

In order to receive all of the most updated and current information and resources, it is critical for YOF parents to regularly visit our College Guidance website (click on ‘College Guidance’ on the left side of the high school home page) and to check the email accounts which are provided by the Yeshivah.  Technology is another critical component of this process and the Naviance Family Connection program is a valuable tool for student success.  Naviance is a web-based tool that helps all stakeholders develop plans, research and compare colleges, track deadlines, show college visit schedules, display Yeshivah of Flatbush-specific data on past college admissions, send and receive emails, and much, much more.  Beginning in eleventh grade, all students and parents receive a personal Naviance account with individualized college and application information.  Here too, it is essential for both parents and students to regularly check email and Naviance in order achieve the understanding necessary for a successful college application and admission process.