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The President’s List: How Seton Prepared Me for Excellence in College


by Leslie Pike | Without a doubt, many parents fear that homeschooling will not adequately prepare their children for college. With the Seton curriculum, this is not a problem.

Without a doubt, many parents fear that homeschooling will not adequately prepare their children for college.

My personal experience has shown the exact opposite to be true: homeschooling has prepared me extremely well for college.

My experience as a homeschooled student gave me several useful tools for succeeding in college.

1. Academics.

Parents worry whether or not their children will be taking sufficiently advanced coursework to prepare them for difficult college classes. With Seton’s rigorous curriculum, this is not a problem.

When entering college, I scored at a high level on my English and Math placement tests, and went straight into Calculus my first semester. I might also add that I was in 11th, not 12th, grade when I took the tests, and I ended up skipping 12th grade and going directly into college.

I was better prepared academically after three years of high school than most young adults are after four years!

(I will still receive a high school diploma, issued by the county public high school. I enrolled in my county high school when I enrolled in college. The high school has accepted my Seton credits as transfer credits, and will accept most of my college classes as dual-credit. I will fulfill my remaining high school graduation requirements this way.)

2. ACT scores.

As all parents know, ACT (or SAT) scores are very important when it comes to admissions and scholarships. Most public schools offer special ACT prep programs and tutoring for this reason. I didn’t have access to that, but my parents purchased the Kaplan ACT prep for me.

I used Kaplan to prepare for the ACT exam I took in 10th grade. I scored 32! (Editor’s Note: The national average ACT score is 21.) I took the ACT again in 11th grade, did absolutely no prep work whatsoever, and scored 33.

When you know the material, you don’t need to study, and I credit Seton for doing a very good job teaching me the material. As a side note, I also took the PSAT in 11th grade. I studied for it a little bit.

I found the exam questions to be very easy, and I finished the sections well before time was called. I scored 222. Seton’s curriculum does a fantastic job preparing students to take standardized tests!

3. Ability to write good essays.

Seton’s English classes do an exceptional job of teaching students how to write essays. I have made an A on every paper I have ever written, no exceptions. I have even had professors tell me, “Wow, you write very good essays! You must have had an excellent teacher for College Composition!”

Ironically, I didn’t take College Composition; I tested out of it thanks to my rigorous Seton high school instruction.

4. Time management skills.

In my opinion, this tool is far more important than the previous three. So many students put assignments off, stay up late working on them to compensate, and do poor-quality work because of fatigue.

I always start assignments early, and usually have them turned in before the due date. To date, the latest I have ever had to work is 10 p.m. (compare that to the usual 3 a.m. or perhaps even later). I usually manage to go to bed around 9 p.m., and I average 8 hours of sleep per night.

I have had more than one student ask me, in amazement, “How do you manage to go to bed so early and yet get everything done on time?”

I smile and tell them, “I start working on assignments the day they are given to me, instead of the day they are due.”

5. Work ethic.

High work ethic is much more important than high IQ when it comes to high grades. I have witnessed firsthand that intelligent students fail because of their unwillingness to work. Most of them had been lulled into a false sense of security by their undemanding high schools.

What they don’t appreciate until too late is that college is far more demanding and less forgiving than high school. A typical 15-week college class covers as much, if not more, material than a typical 36-week high school class.

Additionally, high school teachers are pressured to give as many passing grades as they can; college professors are instructed to cover a certain amount of material and fail students who don’t keep up.

Professors also have the authority to fail students who do not attend class or complete homework, even if the students pass the exams. No wonder so many freshmen who made acceptable grades in high school still fail out of college!

This is one of the reasons I’m so grateful for homeschooling. At home, I had to be responsible for completing my work in a timely manner. I had two siblings, and Mom couldn’t hold all of our hands, so I read the Seton lesson plans and did the allotted work each day.

I knew that if I didn’t complete my work by summer, I wouldn’t get a summer break! Seton taught me to take responsibility for completing my homework.

To sum up, Seton has done an exceptional job preparing me for college. I was awarded a full scholarship at Western Kentucky University, where I have currently completed my freshman year and made the President’s List both semesters. I am working towards an ACS-certified bachelor’s degree in Chemistry.

About Leslie Pike

Leslie Pike
I am the oldest of three children. I am a rising sophomore at Western Kentucky University, where I am working towards a bachelor's degree in Chemistry by completing my remaining high school requirements as dual credit classes.

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