The College Scoops Podcast

Episode 128: Surviving vs. Thriving – Getting the Most Out of High School 

June 28, 2022

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High school can be a pressure cooker as students and parents focus on the college admissions process. Today, our Guest Keith Wilkerson shares why it is important to enjoy high school and how to take the time to thrive in high school which will set students up for success in college.

Key Takeaways:

  • An advisor isn’t necessary to get into your dream school, however they can help you better prepare to raise your chances
  • Mental health and sleep is important when it comes to school, and if you are overloaded with work it is important to sometimes take a step back
  • Sometimes extracurriculars can be just as important as classes, so don’t hold back from doing clubs or activities you enjoy
  • Parents have to let their children “drive the car” when it comes to applying to college. Doing it for them won’t help anyone

Important Resources and Links:

College Thoughts




Meet Keith Wilkerson

Keith Wilkerson

Keith Wilkerson is the Founder and Lead Teacher for CollegeThoughts, an organization with a student-minded team who is dedicated to demystifying the college application process, making the process more of a personal exploration than a stress-inducing enigma.  Previously, Keith worked as a key programs team member for A Better Chance for almost two decades.  

A 1997 graduate of Princeton University, Keith holds a bachelor’s degree in Religion with a certificate of proficiency in African-American Studies.  And with 22 years of experience, over 200 workshops conducted, 1,500 students placed in school, and more than 7,000 families counseled on educational options for private school education and college, Keith and CollegeThoughts have the experience to help good students reach great goals as they apply to the nation’s top colleges.  

He shared that, “Two generations ago, my grandfather swept the floor of the bookstore at William & Mary, posting the accomplishments of his children and grandchildren on the bulletin board inside of the store when we would send updates to him.  Today, I have the privilege of sending students there to study, standing on his giant shoulders and seeing the Promised Land that he dreamed of for us.”

Thank you Keith for coaching us on how to support our students through their high school years to thrive not just survive. High school is a transformative time and finding ways to celebrate oneself will enrich a student’s growth. High School is the time that a caterpillar comes in at 9th grade and leaves as a butterfly in 12th grade. Be curious and ask for help. There are so many people who are out there and available to support you through your academic journey. 

Episode 128 Full Transcript

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College Scoops Staff, Author

College Scoops has a team of college interns who share their insights and expertise with our community. Our team consists of editors, writers, videographers, social media experts, and storytellers who work hard to produce relevant and interesting content for students (and parents) whether they are applying to, attending or graduating from college.

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