TJHSST Student Services Newsletter

The Suite Life

By Student Services
Student Services
November 20, 2019

What's making life sweet this week in Student Services?

The Student Services team is thankful for many things this week:

  • Family and Health.
  • Students who make us smile everyday. 
  • The opportunities we've been given.
  • The upcoming Thanksgiving Holiday!Text saying what's making our lives sweet right now
  • Awesome co-workers who make work fun!
  • Friends who keep us healthy and accountable.  

We are thankful to our students, families, and staff for the wonderful TJHHST community in which we grow and learn every day.  


November Spotlight:  Successful Strategies to help stay calm before a test.

While it is normal to feel some anxiety before a test, some students may experience an inability to concentrate, increased heart rate and lack of confidence.  Check out this FCPS page 10 Tips to Ease Test Anxiety.  Here are four of those tips:  

  1. Make a “Test-Taking Playlist” with songs that will relax and inspire you. Listen to this playlist before you take your test.

  2. Practice mindfulness, or being aware of the present moment, on a regular basis, so that you can do a quick mindfulness activity before you start taking a test. Check out apps such as Calm, Mindfulness, or Relax Melodies.

  3. Make sure you get enough sleep the night before a test.  Also eat a nutritious meal or snack before taking the assessment. You can also try getting a quick workout in before school to help increase focus and reduce physical tension. Limit caffeine, which can make you jittery and more anxious.

  4. Use positive “self-talk.”  Remind yourself that you are prepared, you’ve studied hard, and you know the material.

If a student is struggling with one class or one subject in particular, make sure to reference the Successful Strategies for Self-Advocacy tools and resources that were highlighted in the October newsletter.  

All Grades

Recommendation letters for programs and internships

Students may need a teacher or counselor to write a letter or fill out a form on their behalf as part of an application for a summer program, volunteer program, enrichment course, or other application.  

When asking someone to write a recommendation letter, please remember to be polite, professional, and courteous of the recommenders  time.  Teachers and counselors love supporting students in their effort to find some amazing programs.  Some guidelines to follow regarding recommendations:


DO ask in person.

DO NOT ask via email.  

DO include all due dates and instructions.

DO NOT assume someone will do this for you automatically.  You need to ask.

DO provide the recommender with any materials they may need to write the recommendation after they’ve said yes.  (i.e. resume, writing sample, list of activities)

DO NOT give the recommender less than a week’s notice.  Give them as much time as possible please.  Be respectful and thankful.

DO include a stamped/addressed envelope if it needs to be mailed.  DO email necessary links for online applications.  

DO NOT have your parents ask. Self-advocate!  

Transcript Requests

A reminder to all students that when looking at programs or scholarships that require a transcript for the application, please read the application requirements carefully as some ask for an unofficial transcript and some require an official transcript.  In the Document Resources folder in your Naviance Student (accessed through FCPS 24/7 Learning), there is an ALL GRADES TRANSCRIPT folder with directions about how to request these transcripts.  The fillable forms for official transcript requests are in this folder and can be brought to  Ms. Cox in the Transcript Office in Student Services before school, between classes, and at lunch every day.  If you have questions, please ask anyone in Student Services!


Preparing for Interviews

Whether a student is interviewing for college or for a summer opportunity, preparing to answer some of the frequently asked questions is a key communication skill.  

Counselors and Ms. Wolf in the College and Career Center are happy to run through a “mock” interview with students to familiarize them with the process.  

Some frequently-asked interview questions:

  1. Tell me about yourself.

  2. Why are you interested in _____________ (this college, program, internship, etc)?

  3. What major or program of study are you interested in?

  4. What are your greatest strengths and weaknesses?

  5. What do you like to do outside school?

  6. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?

  7. What makes you unique?

  8. Do you have any questions for the interviewer?   Don’t underestimate this one! Prepare questions that show the interviewer you have done your research and are interested in learning more.

These sites have helpful interview resources:  Interview website #1Interview website #2

Also check out a series of videos on the TJHSSTDSS YouTube channel:  Interview Video


Questions?  Reach out to us in the Suite.

This document contains links to one or more web pages that are outside the FCPS network.  Neither FCPS nor TJHSST controls the content or relevancy of these outside pages.