Special Opportunities

Free or Very Affordable

Special opportunities come and go throughout the year.  We are defining "special" as free or very affordable.  These opportunities will first appear in the Career Center Newsletter and will remain on this page until they expire.

Remember: This information is provided for your convenience and perusal. Postings do not indicate endorsement or sponsorship by W.T. Woodson, FCPS, nor any administrator or employee of either W.T. Woodson or FCPS.  Parents need to check and be satisfied with any program chosen for their children.  This web page contains links to one or more web pages that are outside the FCPS network.  Neither W.T. Woodson High School nor FCPS controls the content or relevancy of these pages.

**NEW!! 

FAIRFAX AREA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT “SHARK TANK” TECHNOLOGY CHALLENGE

High school students in Fairfax County, Fairfax City, and the City of Falls Church are eligible for this competition to develop an innovative, user-friendly device or app that will have a positive impact in the lives of older adults, adults with disabilities, or caregivers.  Winning projects will receive a cash prize and may be considered for further development.  For the “Shark Tank” Technology Challenge Packet including all essential documents and additional information, visit https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/familyservices/older-adults/fairfax-50-plus-tech-challenge.  The Initial Project Proposal Form is due Monday, 17 December with the Final Project Submission Form due 19 February 2019.

**NEW!! 

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY SUMMER SEMINAR

10-14 or 17-21 June 2019, Colorado Springs, CO – Summer Seminar at the U.S. Air Force Academy is a way for rising Seniors to experience life as a USAFA Cadet.  Students will live in cadet dormitories, explore academic facilities and research labs, and participate in workshops including one which may assist with the application process.  The registration fee is approximately $300 if selected.  Participants are responsible for their own travel to and from the Air Force Academy.  For more information and to apply, visit https://www.academyadmissions.com/admissions/outreach-programs/summer-seminar/.  The application is now open and will close on 15 January 2019.  Late applications will not be accepted.

**NEW!! 

COLLEGE BOARD OPPORTUNITY SCHOLARSHIP

The new College Board Opportunity Scholarship (https://www.google.com/search?q=College+Board+Opportunity+Scholarship&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&client=firefox-b-1-ab) provides students the chance to earn money for college for each action they take in the college planning process. Starting this December, students in the class of 2020 can earn funding for college by completing key steps along the path to college. Drawings determine who receives awards.  The information page has a video to help explain the program.

BLAST (BUILDING LEADERS FOR ADVANCING SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY)

The Virginia Space Grant Consortium partners with Virginia colleges to provide current 8th and 9th grade Virginia residents who have a C+ or better GPA and a desire to explore STEM opportunities in a college setting with an opportunity to bring STEM alive through a series of innovative hands-on sessions led by faculty and staff.  Faculty demonstrations will showcase some out-of-the-ordinary science and engineering.  Four sessions will be held:

  • Session 1: Virginia Tech University, 16 – 19 June 2019
  • Session 2: Old Dominion University, 23 – 26 June 2019
  • Session 3: Virginia Tech University, 7 – 10 July 2019
  • Session 4: University of Virginia, 28 – 31 July 2019

Although BLAST is completely free, participants are responsible for transportation to and from BLAST.  Completed applications must include a transcript, recommendation, contact information for your counselor, and a completed application form .  Visit http://blast.spacegrant.org/ to get all of the details and to apply.  Completed applications are due 11 February 2019.

COLLEGE BOARD OPPORTUNITY SCHOLARSHIP

The new College Board Opportunity Scholarship provides students the chance to earn money for college for each action they take in the college planning process. Starting this December, students in the class of 2020 can earn funding for college by completing key steps along the path to college. Drawings determine who receives awards.  The information page has a video to help explain the program.

CONGRESS-BUNDESTAG YOUTH EXCHANGE (CBYX)

The Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange (CBYX) is a scholarship program jointly funded and administered by the governments of the United States and Germany.  CBYX provides year-long academic, homestay, and community service opportunities for American and German high school students, vocational school graduates, and young professionals.  The program for high school students is for students who are between the ages of 15 and 18, have a GPA of at least 3.0 on a 4.0 scale, and are U.S. citizens.  The program is designed to strengthen ties between youth, improve their career skills through formal study and work experience, and expand their perspectives and awareness of each other's culture, society, history and politics.  Participants in the CBYX attend a German high school and live with a host family for a year.  For additional information about the program, visit https://exchanges.state.gov/us/program/congress-bundestag-youth-exchange.  For additional eligibility requirements and the application, visit http://www.usagermanyscholarship.org/app/The application deadline is 11 December.

FAIRFAX AREA HIGH SCHOOL STUDENT “SHARK TANK” TECHNOLOGY CHALLENGE

High school students in Fairfax County, Fairfax City, and the City of Falls Church are eligible for this competition to develop an innovative, user-friendly device or app that will have a positive impact in the lives of older adults, adults with disabilities, or caregivers.  Winning projects will receive a cash prize and may be considered for further development.  For the “Shark Tank” Technology Challenge Packet including all essential documents and additional information, visit https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/familyservices/older-adults/fairfax-50-plus-tech-challenge.  The Initial Project Proposal Form is due Monday, 17 December with the Final Project Submission Form due 19 February 2019.

FAIRFAX COUNTY EXPLORER  PROGRAM FOR FIRE AND RESCUE

Fairfax County Fire and Rescue offers members of the explorer program the opportunity to serve their community, build leadership skills, and gain exposure to the fire and rescue service.  Post 1949 meets three times a week to conduct training in various aspects of the fire service.  After a short training session, explorers are permitted to accompany fire and rescue personnel to emergency incidents.  Visit https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/fire-ems/explorer-training

FAIRFAX COUNTY POLICE DEPARTMENT EXPLORERS

Important Informational meeting, 24 September, 6:30 pm (Optional Meet and Greet), 7:00 pm Formal Presentation, Fairfax County Criminal Justice Academy at 14601 Lee Road, Chantilly, VA - The Fairfax County Police Department Explorer Posts 1742, 2252, and 505 are youth-run programs open to young people ages 14 (and completed the 8th grade) to 20 with an interest in learning more about careers in law enforcement. The programs provide opportunities to learn about law enforcement, serve the community through public service, and teach important life skills such as leadership, public speaking, and self-confidence.  Explorers receive extensive training in various techniques used by law enforcement professionals. This training includes traffic stops, building searches, bomb threat response, hostage negotiation, accident reconstruction, and arrest & search techniques. Explorers become familiar with police radio procedures, patrol areas, vehicles, equipment, and methods of patrol. In addition, Explorers are eligible to participate in the department's ride along program in which they ride with a patrol officer and experience life through the eyes of an officer.  Explorers are given an overview of the Fairfax County Police Department and its daily operations.  The Posts meet bimonthly in Chantilly, Alexandria, and Annandale.For more information and an application, visit https://www.fairfaxcounty.gov/police/getinvolved/explorers and click on the link for each Post.  Applications are due very soon!! 

FLIGHT ACADEMIES

Pathways Flight Academies will be held 28 May – 8 June, 8 - 19 July, or 22 July – 2 August at Liberty University and 7-20 July 2019 at Averett University – The Virginia Space Grant Consortium in partnership with the Commonwealth of Virginia, the Virginia Department of Aviation, and two host universities (Liberty University and Averett University) is offering flight academies at NO COST for high school students statewide.  Four, two-week residential academies will be offered during the summer of 2019 for selected students who have shown an interest in and passion for STEM and have career aspirations to become a pilot.  Participants in this intensive program will undertake ground school and flight training that can culminate in a first solo flight at the end of the academy.  Eligible applicants must be 16 years old by the academy start date, U.S. citizens, Virginia residents, and have a 3.0 or better GPA.  For more information, additional requirements, and to apply, visit http://vsgc-net.odu.edu/pathways-flight-academies/.  Applications are due 25 January 2019.

GIRLS IN TECHNOLOGY MENTOR-PROTÉGÉ PROGRAM

Girls in Technology (GIT) sponsors a FREE, five-month, in-person Mentor-Protégé program for high school girls interested in STEM careers.  Participants explore STEM careers and develop confidence through hands on STEM demos, Q&A with distinguished guest panels, and mentoring sessions with professional women in STEM. Girls will have the chance to ask mentors questions and get direct answers on learning about new opportunities, as well as how to navigate challenges they face in school and society. GIT enables girls so that they can take their STEM skills from the classroom to the boardroom.  The GIT Mentor-Protégé program also provides scholarship opportunities and experience-based awards to GIT Protégés. Groups meet monthly in Reston, Virginia (10/23/18, 1/27/18, 1/8/19, 2/19/19, 3/19/19, makeup day 4/9/19) and in Washington, DC (11/6/18, 11/27/18, 1/8/19, 2/19/19, 3/19/19, Make-up Day 4/9/19).  For more information about the program, visit https://www.womenintechnology.org/mentor-prot-g-program.  If interested in becoming a protégé, apply at http://bit.ly/ProtegeApplication2018.  APPLY ASAP.  MEETINGS ARE BEGINNING SOON!!

2019 HIGH SCHOOL DIPLOMATS PROGRAM

24 July – 4 August 2019, Princeton University – High School Diplomats U.S. is a ten-day program on the campus of Princeton University providing 40 American students the opportunity to engage in academic and social pursuits with 40 Japanese students of the same age.  Current high school Sophomores and Juniors are eligible to apply. The program exposes students to both cultures through daily themes and seminar style learning opportunities.  Students also attend daily language classes ranging from beginner to advanced and taught by native speakers.  For more information and to apply, visit http://www.highschooldiplomats.com/americaThe application deadline is 9 January 2019.

ITALIAN - ONLINE COURSE IN AP ITALIAN LANGUAGE AND CULTURE – Wellesley College offers a FREE online course on the edX platform.  This could provide a study option for the May AP test.  Students can register for free and have instant access anytime to all online materials for self-study.  (Although the basic course is entirely free, there are classes with teachers to assist in the online culture course FOR AN ADDITIONAL FEE.  To access the free online culture course, visit https://www.edx.org/course/ap-italian-language-and-culture-2018-2019?utm_source=School+Counselors&utm_campaign=eef11958e0-AP+Italian+counselors+EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_11_02_CO&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_7d8bcaa4e2-eef11958e0-231525865.  For questions, contact apitalian@wellesley.edu.

KENNEDY-LUGAR YOUTH EXCHANGE AND STUDY (YES) ABROAD 

The Kennedy-Lugar YES Abroad program, sponsored by the U.S. Department of State, offers American high school students and recent graduates full scholarships to study for one academic year in countries with significant Muslim populations.  Living with a host family and attending a local school, YES Abroad students promote mutual understanding between the United States and the host country by forming lasting relationships with the local community. Participants live with a host family, attend a local high school, acquire leadership skills, and engage in activities to learn about the host country’s society and values; they also help educate others about American society and values.  For the 2019-2020 cycle the YES abroad countries are Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Ghana, India, Indonesia, Jordan, Macedonia, Malaysia, Morocco, Philippines, Senegal, Thailand, and Turkey (subject to change).  Applicants must be U.S. citizens, between 15 and 18.5 years of age, and enrolled in high school at the time of the application.  There will be a Webinar for Parents of Applicants on Thursday, 8 November at https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/8055356830701578243.  For more information and to apply, visit http://www.yes-abroad.org/The application deadline is 4 December.

KHAN ACADEMY

Khan Academy offers great opportunities to learn from Pixar and computer programming.  Visit https://khanacademy.org; search for “Pixar” to discover how to write a short story as well as hints on animation.  Search for “computer programming” to learn more from the pros.  Not only does Khan Academy offer advice from these pros, it offers FREE tutoring in virtually every subject.

THE AMERICAN YOUTH LEADERSHIP PROGRAM

The American Youth Leadership Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, offers opportunities for American high school students and educators to travel abroad on a three to four week exchange program to gain first-hand knowledge of foreign cultures and to collaborate on solving global issues.  Academic and experiential educational exchange programs focus on dialogue and debate, leadership development, and community service. Recruitment areas, eligibility requirements, and application deadlines vary by program, so please check http://exchanges.state.gov/us/program/youth-leadership-programs for more information.

FLY-IN PROGRAMS

Thinking of visiting campuses far from home?  The Center for Student Opportunity provides a list of programs that often provide transportation to qualified students for special college visit programs.  Visit: http://hosted.verticalresponse.com/293966/68d3cb4f04/1384000618/ fd68e62f52/ to see the complete list.

GM ASEP AUTOMOTIVE PROGRAM AT NOVA 

Students who are more geared towards a hands-on type of career may be interested in an associates degree through NOVA’s automotive program in Alexandria.  Attend school for half of the semester while working with a porspective sponsor, earning money and gaining experience.  Rolling enrollment is available.  See www.nvcc.edu/alexandria/automotive/asep.htm for more information and to submit an application.

MILITARY FAMILIES & FREE TUTORING

24/7 online tutoring and homework help free for U.S. Military families.  Students connect with a professional tutor for a one-to-one learning session the moment they need help.  Get help with math, science, English, social studies and standardized tests from the secure online classroom, with real-time chat, and an interactive whiteboard.  Visit www.tutor.com/military   or call 800.411.1970 for more information.

TELLURIDE ASSOCIATION SUMMER PROGRAM (TASP)

23 June – 3 August 2019, Cornell University, University of Maryland, and University of Michigan TASP is a free academic opportunity for motivated high school Juniors (rising Seniors) to participate in a six-week college-level seminar while living in a diverse, self-governing intellectual community with similarly motivated peers.  TASPers live together and participate in a three-hour seminar each weekday morning with two college professors.  Classes emphasize group discussion rather than lectures.  Students are responsible for organizing most of their out-of-classroom time through smaller committees.  This element of self-governance is an essential part of the TASP experience.  For more information, visit https://www.tellurideassociation.org/our-programs/high-school-students/summer-program-juniors-tasp/Applications are due 22 January 2019

TELLURIDE ASSOCIATION SOPHOMORE SEMINAR (TASS)

23 June – 3 August 2019, Cornell University and University of Michigan TASS is a free academic opportunity for intellectually curious high school Sophomores (rising Juniors) to participate in a six-week summer seminar and shape a dynamic African-American learning community.  All programs are provided at no cost to participants.  TASSers live together and participate in a three-hour seminar that meets each weekday morning with two college professors.  Participants plan a variety of activities including group discussions, field games, community service projects, and cultural outings in addition to the seminar.  For more information, visit https://www.tellurideassociation.org/our-programs/high-school-students/sophomore-seminar-tass/.  Applications are due 8 January 2019.

U.S. AIR FORCE ACADEMY SUMMER SEMINAR

10-14 or 17-21 June 2019, Colorado Springs, CO – Summer Seminar at the U.S. Air Force Academy is a way for rising Seniors to experience life as a USAFA Cadet.  Students will live in cadet dormitories, explore academic facilities and research labs, and participate in workshops including one which may assist with the application process.  The registration fee is approximately $300 if selected.  Participants are responsible for their own travel to and from the Air Force Academy.  For more information and to apply, visit https://www.academyadmissions.com/admissions/outreach-programs/summer-seminar/.  The application is now open and will close on 15 January 2019.  Late applications will not be accepted.

U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE EXCHANGE PROGRAMS

The U.S. Department of State sponsors a number of exchange programs. Discover what options exist and what is required. Then, check frequently to discover when a program you want opens. Go to http://exchanges.state.gov/us to discover everything you need to know.