Back to school time for teens often means stress about college. The Library can help! We’re offering several college-prep programs at the Main Library and our branch libraries throughout the month of September. All programs are free and open to the public.

Main Library (601 Santa Monica Boulevard):

– The College Process from A to Z, Tuesday, Sept. 1, 7 p.m.

In this 90-minute presentation for grades 9-12 and parents, Diana Hanson of College Mentors will discuss the entire college process, from building a high school “resume” to college selection, testing, applications and financial aid. No registration required.

– Common Core, New SAT, New PSAT: How Do the Changes Affect You? Tuesday, Sept. 8, 7 p.m.

Find out why the PSAT and SAT are changing this year, and why we have the Common Core. C2 Education will explain the changes and why you need to know about them. The lecture is 90 minutes including Q&A, and is for grades 9-12 and parents. No registration required.

– Writing Your College Essay: It’s All About You, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 7 p.m.

Forget the topic sentence! A college essay is meant to be personal – something that reveals a little bit about who you are as a person that the colleges would otherwise never know. It’s a creative story about you. In this workshop, Diana Hanson of College Mentors shares various strategies for writing the main essays (Common App and UC) as well as the “why this school” and “diversity” supplements. For grades 11-12 and parents. No registration required.

– SAT Full-Length Practice Test with Kaplan, Saturday, Sept. 19, 10 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

This practice test for the current (not “new”) SAT mimics the actual test. For grades 10-12. Registration is required and opens on Tuesday, Sept. 1. Register by visiting the Main Library Youth Reference Desk or calling 310-458-8621.

Montana Branch Library (1704 Montana Avenue):

– SAT vs. ACT, Tuesday, Sept. 15, 7 p.m.

Find out which test is right for you, and discover the challenges of each test. This 60-minute workshop is presented by C2 Education. No registration required.

Pico Branch Library (2201 Pico Boulevard):

– Mock New PSAT, Saturday, Sept. 19, 1-4 p.m.

Will you be taking the new PSAT in October? Do this mock exam to help prepare. For grades 8-11, presented by C2 Education. Registration required and is open now; call the Branch at (310) 458-8684 to register.

The Santa Monica Public Library is wheelchair-accessible. For special disabled services, call Library Administration at (310) 458-8606 at least one week prior to event. All Library locations are served by the Big Blue Bus. Check for routes and schedules. Ride your bike. Bicycle parking racks are available at the library.

For more information about these and other Library programs, visit or call the Santa Monica Public Library at (310) 458-8600.

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