February 12th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Raleigh National College Fair – March 20, 2018

Students and families will have the opportunity to meet with representatives from nearly 200 colleges, as well as attend workshops on testing, application tips, essay writing and how to finance a college education.

WHAT: Raleigh National College Fair

WHERE: Raleigh Convention Center

WHEN: Tuesday, March 20th from 4:30 pm-7:30 pm

COST: There is no charge to attend.

REGISTER:  Students are highly encouraged to register online prior to coming to the fair. This enables them to spend more time connecting with representatives and less time waiting to register on site.

Spring Sports Tryout Information!

In order to try out for any sport, you must:

  1. Have a physical completing within the last year and on file with RTHS
  2. Complete and turn in all paperwork found here
  3. Register for tryouts by filling out the form here: RTHS Athletics Tryout Registration Form
  4. Receive a “tryout ticket”, emailed from Mr. Drake, that verifies all required forms are completed and academically eligibility is met
  5. Show your “tryout ticket” to your coach on the first day of tryouts
  6. Do your best and Good Luck!

Here are the dates, times, and locations for tryouts for our spring sports:

Boys’ Golf Tuesday, February 20
Falls Village Golf Club
(115 Falls Village Dr., Durham)
Girls’ Soccer Wednesday, February 14 &
Thursday, February 15
WakeMed Soccer Park
(201 Soccer Park Dr., Cary)
Wednesday: Field 6
Thursday: Field 5
Boys’ Tennis Wednesday, February 14
Southern Boundaries Park
(Third Fork Rd., Durham)
Boys and Girls’
Track & Field
Tuesday, February 20
RTHS Campus

February 5th Raptor Events

College Counseling

High School Counselors

The National Association of College Admissions Counseling recently reported the following:

In 2016, 28 percent of public schools reported employing at least one counselor (full- or part-time) whose exclusive responsibility was to provide college counseling, compared to 49 percent of private schools.

Only 28% of public high schools employ a college counselor! Bummer. But, guess what? My exclusive responsibility is to provide college counseling to the students and families at RTHS. I would love to talk with you about the college search process and how to best prepare for the application process. Please reach out to me anytime to schedule a one-on-one meeting. The easiest thing to do is email me at lringenbach@rthighschool.org. Looking forward to talking with you soon!

December 18th Raptor Events

Winter Holiday Break

Have a great holiday break Raptors. See you in the new year!

College Counseling

RTHS is proud to announce that Leticia Tuset has been selected as a semi-finalist for the Morehead-Cain Scholarship at UNC-Chapel Hill. Leticia’s scholarship application clearly rose to the top as only 20% of applicants are selected as semi-finalists. Wish her luck as she continues through the selection process. Way to go, Leticia!

Mu Alpha Theta News

Mu Alpha Theta (MAT) will be meeting Jan 2, Jan 16, Jan 30, 2018, in room 230 during lunch.

November 20th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Thank you, Juniors and Families of Juniors, for your great attendance at the Junior College Counseling Program! What a fantastic turnout!

For those of you who could not make it, here is the presentation shared during the event. It is obviously a rough outline of the topics discussed. For the next few weeks, I will tackle each subject in the report.  This week, we will start with the college search process.

There are several resources available to help students explore the thousands of colleges across the country (and abroad).  I recommend using search engines such as the College Board’s Bright Future tool.  If you prefer something hard-copy, I have plenty of resources in my office that I am happy to loan out. I like the Fiske Guide best, but there are a lot of other great books out there.  I will be introducing the Naviance software system to the junior class in the next month or so and that will be another great resource for students.  Finally, it is helpful to take advantage of the college campuses in our area. When you have free time, schedule an official tour or three at the schools nearby. It is helpful to become familiar with the vocabulary of the college application process, and taking official tours and listening to information sessions.

While it is obvious to think about academic programs/majors when considering a college search, other criteria are equally important. Students should think about factors such as size, location, and special programs (i.e. study abroad, internships).  It is definitely ok for students to be completely unsure about what they want to study in college and instead think about the academic climate that best fits their learning style.

Please do not hesitate to reach out to me to schedule an individual meeting so we can further discuss the college search process. Thanks!

November 6th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Choosing A College Major

I would like to share this great article from the NY Times about choosing a major in college.

Thanksgiving Donations


We know that for some in our Raptor Family, Thanksgiving is not a time of abundance and a dinner table heavily laden with a feast. We also know that there are many in our community who would willingly share their bounty. Germans celebrate their own type of Thanksgiving as farmers bring parts of their harvest and place them in a church to be distributed to those who might need it within the community. This “Erntedankfest” spurred the German Club to want to initiate a similar initiative within our community.

From Monday, we will place a large tub in the lobby for non-perishable food donations. Items include large canned pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, evaporated milk, large cans of yams, canned green beans, canned mushroom soup, turkey seasoning, boxes or bags of stuffing, cans of cranberry sauce, Velveeta or similar product, elbow pasta, and turkey seasoning. We’ll accept fresh produce such as onions and celery as well as butter or margarine. You can also leave gift cards for Krogers, Walmart or Food Lion so that our Raptor family members can buy fresh items such as turkey, eggs, margarine or butter in this week.

We will place a shoe box at the front desk for gift card donations (with dollar amount on them) as well as for RTHS students and families to request a Thanksgiving dinner box anonymously.

We will distribute the Thanksgiving dinner with fixings on Monday and Tuesday of Thanksgiving week, most likely in backpacks.

Sponsored by The German Club as our form of “Erntedankfest.”

October 9th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Top Tips For Juniors

While the Class of 2018 is busily submitting college applications, the Class of 2019 is working hard in their most demanding courses yet.  The transition from sophomore year to junior year can be a tough one. So I hope our juniors have spent the past month stepping up their game and getting to know their teachers.
Here is my advice for juniors:

  • Buckle down and do your absolute best in all of your classes this year. Your grades are incredibly important this year and the number one thing you can do to increase your chances of admission to any college is earn the best grades you can this year.
  • Work closely with your teachers and make sure you have a strong connection with at least two teachers.  Next year, you will be asking your teachers from junior year to write a letter of recommendation on your behalf. Starting off on the right foot this year and staying consistent will make it easier to ask for a letter next year.
  • Start thinking seriously about standardized tests. All juniors will take the ACT in February at school, but I encourage students to also take the SAT around that same time. So look at the dates available for the SAT in December, January, and March. Once you have taken both tests, you will repeat the test you did better on.
  • Visit the colleges in our area. Get an idea of what you like and do not like by touring dissimilar schools – go to Elon and NC State, visit Chapel Hill and Meredith, try Peace and NCCU.
  • Read the Daily Digest and sit in on the meetings with college reps.

I will be in touch with more details about parent events soon. Sophomore and Freshman families – we will talk in the spring!

September 4th Raptor Events

College Counseling

Testing, testing, 1 2 3

As you know, RTHS is offering the PSAT to all grade levels on Wednesday, October 11. I highly encourage students in 9th, 10th, and 11th grade so sign up to take the test (please follow the instructions provided by Mrs. FC). Students in 12th grade should be focusing on the SAT and/or ACT and do not need to take the PSAT.

In general, I advise students to be thoughtful about their approach to standardized tests. The pre tests such as the PSAT and the Pre-ACT are terrific ways to become familiar with the format of the SAT and ACT.

All juniors take the ACT in February at school. Around that same time, students in 11th grade should also register for and take the SAT. College admissions offices do not prefer the SAT over the ACT or vice versa. Therefore, students should take both tests and decide which test they performed better on and repeat that test. For example, Student A takes the SAT in January of junior year and the ACT in February of the junior year. Student A performed better on the ACT and registers for and takes the ACT again in June of the junior year. Student A then prepares even further over the summer and re-tests for a final time in October of senior year. Student A then has three sets of test scores to present to colleges (most college super-score, taking the highest section of each test sitting).

If you need help creating a testing plan, please come and see Mrs. R.!

August 28th Raptor Events

2017 Eclipse

Research Triangle High School, a STEM school literally right in the middle of a STEM research park, decided it had to make some pretty serious plans for the biggest event of the year – the 2017 eclipse. “I wanted our students who might not have the chance to experience and learn about this bit of astronomy at home to be able to see it in a place where they could do it safely and get some instruction and context on it, here in school,” said Eric Grunden, Principal and Chief School Officer. So the school rearranged the day’s bell schedule so that the entire student body could head outside for the eclipse from 2 pm to 3 pm. Every period was shortened by a few minutes to slip that hour in the middle of the day, and the revised bell schedule was emailed to everyone the night before. Eclipse glasses had been ordered for every student and teacher weeks before, and four telescopes from staff and parent volunteers were set up outside.

At 2 pm everyone in the building trooped outside grabbed their glasses and started viewing the partial eclipse. “This is pretty cool because it’s the first Eclipse for my generation.,” said Kier Condon Grade 9. “This is one of those once in a life time moments you don’t want to miss.,” said Quarry Craig Grade 12. “This is an awesome opportunity, I’m so excited to be a part of this.,” said Noah Burnette Grade 11. “It was the best school day ever!” said Ms. Blizzard, Managing Director, perhaps woozy from the heat, but also thrilled with the school-wide engagement.  “Students were asking questions, taking photos through the telescopes, and talking about science in ways they hadn’t before and about things that we don’t even teach here. If I’d thought about it, I would have tried to get the ice cream food truck here,” said Mr. Grunden. Or as he summarized the day, “It was bitchin’!”

College Counseling

College Day!
On Thursday, August 31, seniors will have a special schedule to allow time for senior pictures and college application work. It should be a great day!

Please encourage your student to be prepared to work on college applications on Thursday. My goal is for all seniors to make significant progress on all aspects of the application process: essays, teacher recommendation requests, Naviance updates, and data entry into the applications.

Of course, on Thursday night, we will all gather in the Black Box Theater at 7 pm for our Senior College Night.

Looking forward to a productive day on the 31st! All seniors will participate in a post-high school planning workshop with Ms. Ringenbach and be bused to the Prestige Portrait Studio for their senior yearbook and cap & gown pictures. Please see this letter which has all the details for the day, including the price of the sitting fee and what you should plan to bring/wear on that Thursday.


Oktoberfest tickets will go on sale in room 58 on Monday for the Saturday, September 9th event sponsored by RTHS and the RTHS German Club! The event is RTHS-family friendly! Come and enjoy true entertainment Bavarian style provided by the Little German Band and Dancers! We’ll have freshly grilled bratwurst, chicken, and vegetables, a variety of German salads and delicacies. No beer, but plenty of soft drinks! In addition, German Club students will be creating flower crowns at various price levels, face painting, and balloon hats. There will also be games such as badminton, German bowling, and corn hole. Ticket prices are $5 door fee with one free ticket if you buy 5! (So 5 tickets for $20 — a great deal!). Rally your friends and family for a night of fun at RTHS’s first annual Oktoberfest on Saturday, September 9th from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

Help our students make the Oktoberfest a success!  Many items still need to be donated or loaned.  Please go through the list and see if you can help! Sign-up here. We could really use canopies that are set up at sports events, beaches, etc. If you have one that you could loan the German Club for the day, we could be even more authentic than we’re planning! And that’s pretty authentic with the Little German Band and Dancers, bratwurst and root beer, German potato salad and a ton more! If you have a 10’x10′ or 10’x20′ canopy, please contact Dr. Overlock at joverlock@rthighschool.org ASAP.

German students will be learning how to bake German cakes before the Oktoberfest. Black forest cake, apple streusel, strudel, Gugelhupf and plum cakes! We’ll need to borrow mixers, measuring spoons, springform pans, Gugulhupf pans, and Bundt pans, as well as some ingredients. We’ll send home a list of ingredients for the big baking extravaganza which will take place on September 7 and 8. Please make sure all items are labeled! We’ll also need parental help on those two days! Come on over (even if your child is not a German student) and join the fun. (And learn how to make some fabulous recipes!)