POLACCA, Ariz. — Hopi High School held a college fair Oct. 7 in the school’s gym to let juniors and seniors know about future possibilities for them after they graduate, including starting an application for college.
Dushon Monongye, academic counselor for the sophomores, juniors and seniors, said the event went great.
“This allows the students to think about pathways after high school. Some have thought about it and some don’t discuss it at home,” she said.
Monongye said the college fair allows the juniors to start thinking about something after high school while it shows seniors the need to get their applications going. She said the event, sponsored by the Arizona High School Relations Program, had more colleges in attendance this year.
Some of those schools attending included Northern Arizona University, University of Arizona, Arizona State University, Coconino Community College, Carrington College, Eastern Arizona Community College, Maricopa Community Colleges, Utah State University, Arizona Culinary Institute, Navajo Tribe Grants and Scholarships, University of New Mexico and Phoenix College.
Monongye said people shouldn’t be asking what Hopi High School can do to prepare students for college, but what can the students do to prepare for college.
“Students should be hearing conversations and expectations at home,” she said. “Teachers are teaching, but how much are the students willing to learn? How much are the students asking questions? When they get bored at home they will realize they have to do something.”
Monongye said the college fair makes students aware of what colleges are available, what majors these colleges offer and what scholarships are available. She said the students attending the college fair were engaged, getting the information they needed and filling out forms to get more information.
“It’s first hand contact with the representative,” she said.
Monongye went into classes the previous week to tell the students what questions they needed to ask, such as finding out what the requirements are for scholarships or how to get admission into the college they want to attend.
“More and more students are becoming aware that they have to pursue a higher education to be successful,” she said.
Twenty-three students from last year’s graduating class are now in college. Monongye has challenged this year’s senior class to see if they can top that mark.
“Just don’t sit at home. The job isn’t going to come to you,” she said.
Breana Saufkie, a senior, said the college fair was interesting because she learned about new opportunities at various colleges.
“It had me breakdown what colleges I already had in mind,” she said.
Saufkie is considering the University of Arizona, Ft. Lewis College and Carrington College to major in public health and maybe minor in journalism.
“The college fair gave me a good idea of how much college will be. Some colleges offered information about how they could help you pay for your tuition,” she said.
Saufkie said all of the college representatives were helpful but she thought that Ruben Fierros from the University of Arizona was the most helpful, because he gave her information on how she could apply and how she could pay for college.
“He also gave me interesting information on what the public health programs have to offer,” she said. “I knew what questions to ask about how much tuition would be, housing, any scholarships they have and about the public health programs they offer.”
Saufkie said the college fair was important to her because she learned about opportunities and made her aware of her options while helping her reduce the number of colleges she had in mind. She was also made aware of several scholarships she could get.
Tyesha Nevayaktewa, a junior, said the college fair was awesome because it helped her narrow down her choices to University of Arizona or Carrington College to major in dental assistance or nursing.
“I liked how the college and university that I want to go to was there,” she said. “It would have been better if more colleges and universities were there.”
Ronald Lopez, a junior, said the college fair was interesting because he was able to walk to different college booths to ask questions. He plans to major in music education at Arizona State University. He hopes to get scholarships so that he doesn’t have to take any college loans for college.
Lopez said the college fair would have been better if there were more colleges attending both from in and out of state.
Shayla Dashner, a junior, said the college fair was interesting and helpful. She is considering going to Northern Arizona University to major in the medical field. She hopes to pay for college with scholarships. She said the college fair would have been improved if more representatives were there.
Dashner said the representative from Northland Pioneer College, Don Call, was the most helpful.
“The college fair was important to me because it let me know the opportunities that colleges provide,” she said.
Larissa “Mayor” Mariano, a junior, said the college fair was good, but she remains undecided about what college to attend, although she wants to major in early childhood education.
“I liked getting to know about all the colleges,” she said.
Mariano also said the representative from NPC was the most helpful.
Greta Quotskuyva, a senior, said the college fair was educational. She said she liked that the recruiters answered questions that she had about how she will benefit from certain programs. She also said the college fair would have been better if more colleges attended. She plans to attend Yavapai College to major in fine arts or communication.
Quotskuyva believes she can get scholarships as long as she maintains her 3.0 grade point average.
Zuri Anderson, a junior, said the college fair was awesome because it helped her decide to go to the University of Arizona, where she plans to major in veterinary science and minor in art. She plans to pay for college through student aid and scholarships.
Anderson said the best part of the college fair was the variety of colleges.