Category Archives: Getting Started

Summer/Fall 2017 applications now open!

High school seniors, here are the simple ways you can earn the earliest possible registration appointment for your first semester of college. By completing the Enrollment steps (For HS students), you will qualify for Freshman Priority Registration.

  1. Apply to GWC online
  2. Complete online orientation
  3. Take the Assessment
  4. Get Student Ed Plan
  5. Register!

Here are some tips for the application:

  • Indicate your education level as “Earned a U.S. high school diploma”
  • For your program of study, you can put undecided if you don’t know yet what you’ll major in.
  • If you do not know your Social Security Number, it is okay to decline to enter it at this time. GWC Enrollment will then follow up with you to obtain additional information.
  • DACA (Deferred Action Childhood Arrival) students should indicate their citizenship status as “Temporary Protected Status” and utilize the USCIS# on your US Employment Authorization Card.
  • Be thorough in telling us what programs and services you are interested in!

After applying, you will receive an email from us within two business days with your GWC Student ID#, as well as your MyGWC username and password. You will use the ID# to sign up for the Assessment with your counselor or to test at GWC. You will log into MyGWC to do the online orientation.

The test is critical to your success! In fact, it impacts your graduation and transfer timeliness. With just a few hours of test prep, you can save yourself hundreds of dollars’ worth of tuition and book fees, and about 50 hours of studying for a class you might not need! Start with these sample exams to give you an idea of what to expect on test day.

When finished with steps 1-3, you will hear from us in the Spring regarding your next steps. We will invite you to come to GWC for the FPR workshops, where you will get your SEP (Step 4) and register for classes (Step 5) on the same day!

As always, you can contact us at with any questions.

Have a happy application!

College-ready in 12th grade: month-by-month tips for seniors

It is no longer true that you can wait until April or May of senior year to prepare for community college. This is wisdom of a previous era, when college admissions in California weren’t quite as competitive. These days, college readiness is a year-round mindset, every year of high school!

You may often find yourself flooded with college info. Seems like everyone’s got an opinion, whether they read it from forums or heard it from a cousin at Cal State Long Beach or saw a headline from Buzzfeed. It may be difficult to navigate this sea of information. Here at GWC, we like to help. So here is a month-by-month breakdown of what you can do to prepare for community college!



  • Make sure that you are taking Math senior year! Students who take a “year off” from math tend to struggle in their 1st year of college.
  • Consider taking a college class in senior year at GWC. Tuition is free, and you only need to pay for fees (under $50 total).
  • Finalize list of colleges. Review each college’s requirements for admission.



  • Start applications online. GWC Fall 2017 applications begin 11/28/2016.
  • Request letter of recommendation from teachers to get ready for scholarship applications.
  • Attend college nights at your high school (see your counselor for more info).
  • Attend college fairs at your high school/school district.
  • Apply for FAFSA October 1-March 2 for the 2017-18 school year.



  • Apply for the Frank M. Doyle Foundation scholarship.  Applications available online at Deadline to apply is March 1.
  • Keep track of your colleges’ student portal accounts. You might have several sets of usernames and passwords!
  • Complete GWC’s online orientation, which is one of the steps for freshmen to get first pick of classes.
  • Need help adjusting to college? Request additional info. For example, you can use AskGWC for help 24 hours a day!



  • Check that the college has received financial aid forms, test scores, and all other forms.
  • Attend college Preview Days for prospective students (GWC’s is February 23, 2017!)
  • See your counselor for placement test dates and signing up. If you’re attending community college and you go to a high school in Garden Grove Unified, Huntington Beach Union, or Newport-Mesa Unified, testing is at your school during February, March, and April.
  • Prepare for the placement test! Although it is not pass or fail, it does have an impact on how soon you can graduate college or transfer to a 4-year. Study aides available online at


  • March 2 is the deadline for submission of FAFSA and GPA verification forms to qualify for California State monies.
  • Watch your email for the Student Aid Report (SAR) to arrive from FAFSA. Check with college to be certain they receive a copy!
  • Check out college campuses by joining a free tour! Contact GWC at or call 714-892-7711, ext 55290 to reserve.
  • Take the community college placement test at your high school.


April & May

  • Decide where you would like to go.  Revisit the campus if necessary.
  • Sign and return financial award letter, if you received one to accept.
  • Take makeup placement tests, if necessary.


  • Fight off that senioritis! Finish strong and be ready for college.
  • Congratulations, grad! Enjoy your summer and we’ll see you in the Fall.


Questions? Leave a comment!

Thanks for reading.

SOAR Student Process for Fall 2013


1) Apply online as SOAR student: starting Feb 18th

 2) Take SOAR Assessment Test either in your career center or on GWC campus. For an appointment call:


 3) Complete Orientation

 4) Register for your classes on or after your registration date.

(Do not register late or you may miss out on getting into your ideal course!)


* It is your responsibility to check your mygwc email for your registration date, Financial Aid info, and anything related to your attendance.


SOAR online application instructions for students


We are giving the opportunity to High School seniors participating in the SOAR program to submit an Admissions application online.  The application filing period for Golden West College and/or Orange Coast College for Summer/Fall 2013 will open on Monday, February 18, 2013.    You must wait until this date before filling out an online application to the either college.  Concurrently enrolled High School students who may have previously applied to Golden West College or Orange Coast College for the spring 2013 semester must reapply as a first time student in college for Summer/Fall 2013.  Please follow the instructions below for the online application:


1.     Apply online at  On the GWC homepage, click on “Apply for Admission” which is located on the left hand side under “GWC Quick Links”

2.     After reading the information on the welcome page, scroll to the bottom and click on “Begin Application for Golden West College

Note: If you are planning on attending Orange Coast College instead of Golden West College, follow step 2 above but select OCC instead of GWC.

3.     New Users to the online application will need to create a new account.  Those students who may have previously applied online to the Coast Community College District (OCC, Coastline or GWC) will log on using their previously established account information.

4.     After logging in, select “Summer/Fall 2013” as the term you are applying for.

5.     On the Education screen, select “first time student in college

  1. On the online application, students must indicate their education level as “Received high school diploma from a U.S. school
  2. Students must also indicate their High School completion date is before the start of the fall semester.
  3. The last page of the online application is the “supplemental” information page.  On the supplemental page, it is very important that you answer the following question:

“As a High School senior, will you be participating in the Early Assessment program through your school?  If yes, enter the program code you received from your school in the box”


  1. Enter SOAR13 in the box for the question shown above


Online applications may take  up to 10 business days to process, at which point you will be emailed your Coast Community College District (CCCD) student ID number, a username and password to log in to your student portal.  You will be required to give your High School Counselor your CCCD student ID number when you sign up for SOAR testing so make sure you remember it or put it in a safe place for reference.


Some Internet Service Providers filter mail from the Coast Community College District so please check your trash/spam folder if you don’t receive an email response within 5 business days of submitting your application.  You can avoid this by adding and to your Friendly Approved Senders list.  This is especially important if you use providers such as AOL, Yahoo, Earthlink, MSN, Gmail, Hotmail, or Roadrunner and/or you use spam filters

The key to success is to become prepared, this is a must read for incoming students!

Currently in the State of California, Community College’s are a sought after resource for many reasons. High School students looking to begin their Bachelor’s degree at a fraction of the cost, community members brushing up on their skills for business, and workers looking to retrain to advance their careers or change careers. It is no surprise to those involved in our system that times are different now with the budget cuts. For all those looking to attend any community college you need to plan for your back up plan.

Life changes quite rapidly from our beginning plan at times, and this is no different when it comes to school. We would love to have things align perfectly, however what if things take a detour? Are you prepared to still move forward? Have you covered your bases? Think about it…the key to success is partly determination, but the main substance of success is built around preparation.

Today I am going to discuss with you this topic of preparation so that you can apply it to your goals,for your education and your life. One of my main reasons for choosing to address this topic is that I have been hearing a lot of mis-guided information about students not transferring, getting stuck, not getting classes, and not getting into programs. So, let’s talk about this. If you take a look at the history, students that come to the community colleges have many goals for education ranging anywhere from retraining to transferring. Now, with the “budget impaction” with the state this does mean that we have cut some courses and altered our schedules so that we can adhere to our funding. Rest assured that we are FULLY aware that the only reason we have classes, a college, a school system, and at the end of the day…a job, is because we are here to educate students. We do have students that are not getting their courses, some due to lack of flexibility in their weekly schedule, and most because they didn’t prepare and have now gone into a late registration.

So, how can you become prepared?
1) put your applications in online ASAP for the following semester. Keep in mind you only have to re-apply if you didn’t enroll in the prior semester. (HS SOAR students- sit for your test and mark GWC on the application for priority registration-local feeder HS only!)
2) Go to your scheduled orientation time! If you must re-schedule this, do it ASAP.
3) REGISTER on the date and time that is sent to you! (It will be sent to your mygwc account). Now let’s talk registration for a minute…you can go online at any point and take a look at the courses you are going to be enrolling in. It will tell you if there is still space in the class or if you need to possible have a back up course in mind. Word of advise…no matter where you are in the world, REGISTER ON TIME!!! Get to a computer and register. If you are late, it means classes are closing! Additionally, petition your ideal classes (meaning show up to the first class!).

You can also entertain the thought of backing yourself up by having applications in at other campuses. Hey, it’s free…and you only use your registration time if you need it! I tell this to high school seniors all the time, back yourself up with us even if you are “positive” you are being accepted to your four-year university of choice. The consequence of not doing this means you could be in late registration (meaning less class options).

So in remaining in today’s theme…BACK YOURSELF UP, BACK YOURSELF UP, BACK YOURSELF UP! You hold the keys to your success, so lets get moving!

Contact me with any questions you may have!


Learn how to sell yourself…not literally of course!


In order to get the job you want now, the career you want later, the life you want, the income you desire, the soul mate you may be looking for, the connections to your future…you have to learn how to market your best asset…YOU!


When you look at what a resume’ is, an interview, a first date or your college applications are, the most common ground is that it is a reflection of you. These are ways to build and create buy-in from the person, company, or college of your choice.  There is never a better time than now to learn skills to help you create a blueprint for the ways to market you as a person and what you are capable of.


Some ways to learn and refine these skills are certainly offered here at GWC. The possibilities are endless. You have your interpersonal communication classes to learn how to interact with others effectively (and network), public speaking classes to help in times when you need to address a group of people (or put to rest any fears of interviews), Writing and English classes to refine your writing skills, foreign language courses to be an asset to your employer and the community, and the Career Center and workshops to help you build your resume’. These are just a few of the endless opportunities to advance your skills and deliver your message. Remember to ask those you work for, learn from, or do community service with for letters of recommendation. Start building a portfolio. In some cases businesses like to see your work, not just hear about it.


Have you ever spoken to someone after hearing him or her give an amazing and effective speech? Nine times out of ten, if you ask them how they got to be such a motivational speaker you may receive the response “I get so nervous and dread public speaking!” It is a refined skill, not just a passion. I can relate to this, as I speak in public situations all the time, and trust me when I say I did not race to the podium when I first learned this would be part of my career.


Most of the time in school or your career we all tend to look to the next task to complete for some other purpose. Start paying attention to what you are learning or creating and find a way to make it work toward your goals. Open your eyes to the things and people around you. Every moment you leave your house, desk or office is an opportunity to connect with new people…and you never know what role that person could play in your future.


To our upcoming generation…you are the leaders of our future. Use us to get there!