December 17th, 2011

baby penguins of joy

High school experience/college applications in the US

My setting is 'generic US high school' rather than specific for time and place, although it'll be roughly contemporary. (Might, possibly, go as far back as the late 1990s)

Previous tagged posts in this community have already answered some of my questions, but I would be hugely grateful if anyone could answer the following:

What kind of car would be cool for a high schooler to drive, but plausible for a not-particluarly rich kid to have saved up for and have bought second-hand as a bargain? I'm thinking maybe a 4x4? I don't know how to Google this one, but perhaps some of you have memories of 'what was cool' within the last twenty years.

When do the SATs and any other important exams take place? June of Junior year? Earlier? And I understand it can be possible to retake the SATs between Sept and Dec of Senior year—would having subject tutoring (specifically Math and Chemistry) over the summer help with these, or are they more like IQ tests than knowledge tests?

I've looked online for Art colleges in the USA (and shrieked with fright at the amount of money it costs to get a Bachelor's degree at one), but I have not found out what kind of qualifications a person would need in order to get a place at one. Can anyone tell me? If a person obtained scholarships, what kind of money might they be talking about? Are there particular places which would be obvious and recognisable 'top' places to study Art, and if so, would a student need a strong academic record in other subjects to be able to get a place, or is artistic talent an overwhelming factor?

Any and all help would be very much appreciated.

ETA Huge thank yous to everyone who commented. Lots and lots of useful info and places to look for more detail. Please excuse me for not sending individual replies—my deadline is a day and a half away, eek!