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The Current

Despite low turnout, college prep BT enlightens

Juniors Abby Weir, Brady Beskeen, Stephanie Merrill and Julia Bohn among others watching a presentation put together by Nevada Union Counselor Dominie Wilwhite. Photo by Jared Pittsley

Juniors apply themselves in new College Prep Bruin Time.

Bear River started a College and Career-Readiness Bruin Time for juniors every Thursday at Bruin Time in C202, hosted by Bear River Counselor Cindy Henry-Grimm and Nevada Union Counselor Dominie Wilhite.

The goal of the enrichment is to help juniors begin to prepare for the post-graduation decisions that await them in their senior year.

We want to cover how to really explore colleges because sometimes we just get stuck in a rut where it’s just we look at what’s around us,” said Counselor Henry-Grimm.

The Bruin Time is newly instated by Bear River with funds from a state grant for college and career readiness.

“We wanted to provide a service for kids that they would get if they were to hire someone who did college counseling,” Counselor Henry-Grimm said. “To give them that quality that wouldn’t be available financially for most kids.”

For many students, this opportunity provides resources and advice to help them narrow down the often overwhelming college selection process.

Seeing all the colleges can be really daunting so I thought that by going to this Bruin Time it would make it a little less intimidating,” said junior Julia Bohn. “I think that it’s really going to narrow down my options for college because there’s so many and I think that by looking at it from this perspective with counselors, then it’ll be a lot easier to find one that’s perfect for me.”

“The goal was to show them that there’s between 4,000 and 5,000 colleges here in the country, so to kind of explore some of those other ones that they wouldn’t really think about,” said Mrs. Henry-Grimm. “To know that the Midwest has a lot of availability in colleges so that there’s no waiting, there’s not going to be a waitlist of any sort, or a lottery, they can be reasonably priced. There’s lots of opportunities out there so we want to help them explore that.”

This service has been a huge learning experience for many juniors.

“I definitely expect to have my horizons kind of broadened with this whole experience,” Bohn said. “I found that there’s certain things in colleges, like a smaller student body as opposed to an incredibly large one, that I wouldn’t have really thought of before being exposed to this class.”

For some students, the Bruin Time is an opportunity to learn more about the application process and prepare themselves for the college of their dreams.

“I’ve got two colleges that I really want to go to so it’s kind of like now I what I want to look for, how to make them want me more, so just how to make myself seem more appealing to these colleges that I want to go to” said Brady Beskeen, a junior. “And since I know where I want to go, I can look at them specifically.”

Beskeen hopes to attend University of California Davis, or California State University Chico.

Overall, the Bruin Time is a place for juniors to start to get a hold on their college plans.

“I learned a lot about the process, like what you need to do when you’re applying and how to narrow them down,” junior Hunter Kennedy commented.

The turnout for the Bruin Time was less than expected, but there is hope for growth within the program.

“I’m hoping we’ll get more kids,” said Counselor Henry-Grimm. “Right now we have 30 signed up but only 12 showed up. I’m hoping that it balances out somewhere around 20, that’s my goal for this year. Hopefully, in the future, word of mouth will pass on so maybe next years kids will be more willing to come.”

I would absolutely encourage anybody and everybody, even if you’re not a junior or you still have a couple of years to make your college decision, because it’s not like it’s an actual class that you’re going to everyday, it’s just once a week so it’s not very much of your time that’s being taken up,” Bohn said. “But the counselors make very good use of their time and they already have a powerpoint presentation ready to go and it’s really open to anybody who’s more interested in learning about different colleges.”

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Despite low turnout, college prep BT enlightens