For high school students, the only task more formidable than finding a job is applying to college. North Cobb provides the fix for all worries: The Future Shop. Monday through Thursday, in room 108, volunteers run the Shop who, together with the counseling department, house all of the resources to launch students’ futures.
The Future Shop’s official mission statement is “to facilitate and support students in the process of developing their future beyond North Cobb High School.”
Head of the Shop, Mrs. Laura Alves, elaborated: “The Future Shop is here to help you explore your future options, so if you’re going to college, technical college, into the workforce, or the military you can come here and find your way. We represent the college visits from all over the country. We’re just an extension of the guidance counselor’s office so they send students to us that might need help. We want to bring in the students who don’t have the parent’s knowledge at home and we want to help them and their parents out.”
North Cobb’s Future Shop is in its third year since its creation by Colleen Page, wife of North Cobb’s principal, Dr. Page. The idea arose from concerns about connecting parents and students throughout the application process.
The Future Shop remains college-oriented, with resources on every school in the country and endless information on the admissions process as well as entry-level tests like the SAT and ACT. The main goal remains to guide students’ next steps, but also to help parents find solace in knowledge of the current college process.
“It’s so much more competitive than when my generation was in college. The kids need the rigorous schedule, the GPA, the test scores, the recommendations, the essay, extracurricular activities – all of the accolades. We can start from the beginning right to the end of college applications and help most of the way. We instruct people on how to fill out financial aid forms which is all online. We also have sheets that define what to be completing as you go through each year of high school. ” Mrs. Alves said.
Services also encompass occupational fields, including setting up direct appointments with military representatives, searching for career opportunities, polishing resumes, and teaching about the interview process.
While North Cobb certainly spreads the word about its many services, The Future Shop remains mysterious and slightly unpopular among students.
Junior Madeline Schohan commented, “The only thing I know is that they do the college tours, but can it help me find out what job I want to get?”
Mrs. Alves addressed the problem, “We average about two students daily. We try to get the word out in homerooms and with posters across the school, but it feels like many students don’t realize the resources they have at their disposal.”
The Future Shop is a fantastic amenity for all of North Cobb’s students and parents as they face the challenge of finding a college and career.
Interested in helping? Student and parent volunteers are always welcome. Email Laura Alves at [email protected]