Now that we are in the second semester of the school year, it is a good time to look at your GPA (grade point average), and determine if it is a good reflection of you as a student. Your grade point average is an important factor for college admissions, in addition to the difficulty of courses you take.

Winter is a great time to register for standardized testing for college admissions. Due to COVID-19, many universities have waived the requirement for SAT and ACT score submission for the 2022-2023 academic year. However, not all schools have eliminated the requirement of these tests as part of their admission process for the future.  While both the SAT and ACT are similar, there are important differences between them. You can maximize your potential score by deciding which test best fits your learning style and knowledge.

This year many of you will celebrate Christmas with your host families. The Christmas season is a joyous time when schools close, houses are brightly decorated, and families gather together.

November is the American Thanksgiving month…the time of the year when we give thanks for the many good things we have in our life- both the big things, like our family and the ability to study abroad and even the small things, like cell phones and great food. Being grateful has many benefits for mind, body, and soul. Let’s look at some of these advantages.

Gratitude Improves:

For many of you, this is the first time you have lived away from home. And while you are still living with a family here in the United States, you are developing into independent men and women. With this maturity, comes the ability to manage your own money. Even if money is still coming from your parents, it is important to develop budgeting skills to be fiscally responsible now and in preparation for when you are living independently.

You are part of a wonderful community of AHLI students from many different countries, coming from a variety of cultures celebrating unique holidays. Usually in this blog we talk about American holidays, but this month we thought we would share September holidays from countries around the world, including those from your home countries!

AHLI is happy to welcome new and returning students to the 2021-2022 school year. As you settle into your host family and jump back into school, you may be experiencing a range of emotions from excitement to apprehension. Going into an unfamiliar situation, whether after a long time or for the first time can stir up feelings of uneasiness and anxiety. Every teenager wants to meet people like themselves and feel like they fit in. It can be easy to put a lot of energy into convincing others to think you are awesome or cool. But there is a better way to make more friends faster.

On behalf of AHLI, it is my great privilege to say Congratulations to our 52 graduates! Your journey has not been an easy one compared to your fellow students. You have braved a new country, a new culture, a new language, a new home, and a new school- all to make your way to this summit. As you look back on the path you have travelled, you will remember challenges, adventures, hopefully laughs, and many people who have supported you to rise up to the apex on which you stand. Take a look around at the magnificent view you have. It is quite the accomplishment!

You probably have been told that in addition to SAT scores, colleges consider your essay and extracurricular activities when making an acceptance decision. College acceptance committees look for well-rounded, mature, young leaders to invite into their community. Volunteering is a way to display your interests and develop your own character through helping others.

As we “March” into April, many of you are thinking of what comes after high school. As you prepare for post-secondary, such as college or university, we wanted to give you an international student’s perspective on taking this next big step in life.