About this guide
Today's high-schoolers are butting up against budget cutbacks, rising costs and tougher-than-ever competition for limited college spots.
The good news: As you face the nail-biting rite of passage from high school to college, The Seattle Times College Guide offers a hand.
As with our first guide introduced last year, we've drawn on the best resources to glean the most useful advice geared to local students, to help them find the right college, get in and pay the bills.
Completely updated and expanded, this year's guide includes these additional features:
Are you prepared to do college work? We tell where freshmen typically fall short and how you can make sure you don't.
Financial how-to: We compare options for saving and raising money; point you toward "best bet" scholarships; and share local families' payment strategies.
Alternatives to traditional, four-year schools: Our resource guide lists programs from art to automotive repair.
A link to a test that measures your likes and aptitudes and directs you to possible professions and schools, along with projected job-market demand.
More financial-aid tips, from the lowdown on college tax breaks to Morningstar's top-rated college savings plans.
Links to many Washington and Oregon school Web sites, with snapshots of some regional schools typical high-school GPAs and SATs of freshmen, and highlights of academic and social life.