Enhance the College Application
According to the Undergraduate Admissions experts at Yale University, colleges want to see students demonstrate progressive rigor on their transcript. You may think that this means one thing: max out on Honors and AP courses. These are great courses that challenge students and prepare them for the rigors of college, however, amassing a disjointed set of highly rigorous courses won’t demonstrate focus, in fact could demonstrate the opposite, and can lead to burn out. Blindly taking all Honors and AP courses available is neither in a student’s best interest nor the only option.
The often overlooked key word in describing a highly competitive transcript is not “rigor,” but actually “progressive,” which indicates development and direction. This means that to make your application more competitive, you must continue to take a challenging program, to grow and excel, through your senior year, in areas of interest and passion.
In an effort to continue to help students determine their own individualized success and go beyond Honors and AP courses, Fusion offers High School Diploma Endorsements. This supplemental program allows students to essentially “major” in high school by selecting a concentration area, or Fusion Endorsement. An Endorsement is defined as “a coherent sequence or series of courses” and Fusion offers six different options for students to choose from:
- STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics)
- World Language
- Visual and Performing Arts
While still taking all graduation requirements at the appropriate level, the Endorsement facilitates purposeful course planning in development of student interest, and demonstrates to colleges a student’s commitment to a particular area of study. This experience in high school brings more credibility to the high school transcript and college application.
Determine the Right Path
The best time to start thinking about an Endorsement is in 8th grade, before registering for high school courses. However, Fusion offers rolling admissions and understands that students start our program or find a passion at different times. For students transferring in to Fusion later in high school, having already earned credits in a particular area such as world language or art, we can gladly recommend the few additional classes to fulfill the Endorsement and be able to stamp the students diploma and transcript with the endorsement credential. Even our students who are simply taking classes for credit can notify the Director of Student Development (DSD) or their Post-Secondary Counselor (PSC), and we will advise of the courses needed to obtain an Endorsement.
To learn more about all the different Fusion Endorsements, visit our website here. It’s also important to note that this program is not simply for full-time Fusion students, we offer this program to ALL students. You can come to Fusion with your current and planned courses from your school of record. What we do is determine which courses align with courses that fit into our endorsement criteria. Then supplementing with Fusion courses, which may not be offered at your school. Once you’ve completed the courses needed with us and provide a final transcript, we will stamp your Fusion transcript with the proper Endorsement(s).
Set Yourself Apart
Pursuing an Endorsement demonstrates your commitment and passion to deeper learning in a particular area of interest that you chose, not that an institution mandated for you. Additionally, diving in deeper with specialized classes at a younger age can increase the likelihood that you will more confidently choose a major in college, and stick to it. You are more than the sum of your honors classes and standardized test scores, and earning a Fusion Endorsement helps bring your story to life, resulting in a stronger application and better admissions outcomes.
Liz Le is Fusion Education Group’s Director of Student Services. In this role she oversees the Registrar Department, International Student Program, and leads our Post-Secondary Counseling efforts. After nearly a decade, Liz left the world of Higher Education to pursue school counseling. Fusion quickly rose to the top of prospective schools, and she was highly intrigued with the model and the idea of customization for all. She has a passion for service and encouragement; not only with students and families, but with her team, colleagues, and friends. When Liz isn’t immersed in a new challenge, she is spending quality time with her husband, Paul, and her four children ranging in ages from 6 to 19. She loves anything that involves sun on her face or friends by her side!