College Preparation

After Graduation – What’s Next?

The prospect facing the graduate from high school can be bewildering.  Should I go directly to college?  Take a gap year?  Join the military?  Enter a trade school?  Spend time at a monastery?  Or travel the world?  Most of our graduates choose to go directly to a Catholic liberal arts college, but over the past several years we have encouraged many of our graduates to defer college for a year (or two) to apprentice to a tradesman or volunteer in a mission.  We have found that graduates who take a year or two to work and develop in one of these meaningful pursuits gain confidence and discipline through their work in a trade or a mission, and acquire a larger sense of their own purpose in life and thus of the important role college will play in helping them to live it better. 

College Application Process

If your rising senior is college-bound, we recommend that you help your son begin the college application process over the summer (3 months), and then continue guiding him as he completes the application process during Thanksgiving break (1 week) and Christmas Break (3 weeks). We will, of course, offer advice and help in this process throughout the school year, but we expect that the majority of the student work of writing essays and filling out applications will be done during breaks while students are at home.  Access to computers is becoming more and more necessary in applying to college, and while seniors at school can get a few minutes of computer time here and there under our supervision to accomplish minor online tasks, it does not align with the character of our school to grant them large blocks of computer time.  During school breaks students not only have access to computers but they also have the long blocks of time needful for such involving and time-consuming tasks.  The most important reason for completing college applications at home, however, is so that parents can be the primary guide in the college discernment and application process.

Standardized Testing

Taking a standardized test has become an essential part of the process of applying for college.  At Gregory the Great Academy we recognize that these tests play an important role in determining whether a student is accepted into college and, in some cases, how much scholarship money will be awarded to him.  The two major tests offered are the SAT and the ACT.  Now, however, there is an alternative called the Classical Learning Test or CLT, which is designed to serve schools that follow, as we do, a classical mode of education.

Classical Learning Test 

The Classical Learning Test is a relatively new offering that is gaining traction among the liberal arts colleges that many of our graduates go on to attend. Schools that accept the CLT include:  

Christendom College

University of Dallas

Wyoming Catholic College

Thomas Aquinas College

Franciscan University

Thomas More College of Liberal Arts


Ave Maria


John Paul the Great

      …. and many others. 

We have decided to prepare our students for and to require each of our students to take (as seniors) only the Classical Learning Test. We have chosen to do this for the following reasons:

1.    All of the colleges our students tend to choose to accept the CLT.

2.    The CLT is aligned more closely with the Academy’s curriculum and will give colleges a better sense of our students’ accomplishments. 

3.    The CLT is close enough in form to both the SAT and the ACT that we believe learning to do well on it will help students to score better on the SAT and ACT as well.

We will prepare our students to take this test during their junior year and each student will be required to take the test during the fall semester of their senior year, usually in October.  We will sign students up for the CLT and administer the test at Gregory the Great Academy. The Academy will cover the cost for the test using the students ‘Activities Fee. Any further administering of the CLT must be paid for by parents directly.

SAT and ACT (Click here for an overview of the SAT)

Students who wish to take either the SAT or ACT (or both) may do so. We will transport students to the testing site on the morning of the test and make sure each student has all of his testing materials with him, but it is the parents’ responsibility to sign their sons up for the ACT and the SAT, and to pay for the test.

If you wish to sign your son up for either the SAT or the ACT on any date listed below, please check with the school first to make sure there is no school event occurring at the same time that would make it difficult or impossible for us to transport your son to the testing center.  

Necessary information to sign your son up for ACT or SAT

1)    Testing Center: Scranton High School

2)    CEEB code for GGA:  394760

Click here for SAT dates, deadlines, and registration.