Top 5 reasons why families use college consultants
1. Guidance for both students and parents throughout this process
The complicated maze of coursework, standardized tests, extracurricular activities, and educational enrichment opportunities throughout high school, as well as the rigorous application season, can be streamlined by tailoring a plan to your student.
With the increase in competition, the average number of colleges a student applies to and in required application materials, a college consultant can help students stay on the right track and effectively market themselves to their target universities.
2. Building a balanced college list to help ensure there are numerous worthwhile options for the student.
Your student will only end up going to one college, and an independent counselor can help your family isolate schools that will be the best fit, academically and socially, for your student.
Having a balanced list of schools also helps with managing student and parent expectations. Getting into college isn’t a competition for getting into the most colleges, but having a balanced list means having a variety of options to choose from.
Admission offices have varying priorities every year, so it can be difficult to determine for many of these top-tiered colleges if a student will be admitted or not. A balanced list of colleges helps to ensure that the student is spending their time applying to the right schools for a good list of results.
Example: If a student applies to all reach schools, then the student may find themselves in a situation where they get denied from a lot of their schools. That can really be a detriment to the student’s confidence and limit their options. See more on building a balanced list of schools.
3. Strategizing before applying and adjusting plans to the needs of your student
There are many factors that go into the admissions office’s decision to admit students, the major ones being:
The student’s transcript – number and rigor of courses and grades earned
Standardized test scores
Student profile – extracurricular activities, involvement in educational enrichment opportunities, community service, passion, commitment
Working with a college consultant can:
Help your student develop a course plan that highlights their strengths and can be adjusted when necessary to maximize their GPA
Create a testing timeline that ensures all necessary standardized tests are taken at the right time throughout their high school career. Students typically take the general SAT/ACT 3-4 times, so selecting which test dates to register for is crucial to earning the highest possible score. As with everything in this process, timing is important! Your student is involved in a number of activities, so tailoring a plan that includes testing is the best way to guarantee your student has a less-stressful application process.
Guide your student through narrowing down the academic disciplines they are most interested in through various activities, meetings, and workshops. Having academic focus demonstrates passion and universities want to know that students have academic interests that go beyond the superficial.
4. An experienced third-party for the student to work with that focuses solely on college planning.
Let’s face it, teenagers are not always the most receptive to parent suggestions (even if they are right!).
Students and parents have told us repeatedly how helpful it has been to have another person, with the knowledge of the current college admissions landscape, provide their student with guidance and support through this complicated process.
5. Save time, money and reduce anxiety of the unknown
The time that it takes to research potential colleges can be exponential and often times can lead a person down a rabbit hole. With over 5,000 colleges throughout the United States, narrowing down the appropriate list to apply to, creating and executing a plan for applications and essay development, as well as answering all the questions in between can be a very time-consuming project.
An independent college consultant that has the expertise, time, and patience to simplify this process, reducing the amount of time, money, and anxiety you face throughout.
3 not-so-obvious reasons why families use college consultants
1. Teaching students valuable life skills
A large part of working with a college consultant is helping the student to create a personal plan, determine the tasks and timelines to complete them and then execute the plan to allow them to achieve their goals.
Our students have repeatedly told us our reverse-engineering process, applied to their other life goals, like applying to medical school or graduate programs, has made it much easier for them to succeed. We’re here to help them take on the daunting task of college admissions, but our processes and systems allow for the students to carry their skills beyond the college.
2. Helping the student stay organized
We cannot guarantee that we’ll be able to help your student keep their room organized, but with all the admission requirements that the colleges have now, times the number of colleges the average student applies to, it takes some strong organizational skills to stay on top of everything.
To provide some perspective: our students apply to an average of 14 colleges and write an average of 16 essays with 4.2 revisions. Our time spent with our students through this process ranges anywhere from 45 to 65 hours and that does not include the time the students spent working on their essays and applications by themselves.
3. Ownership of process = Valued results
College planning does not happen overnight, nor should it be a last-minute activity that leaves a student turning in sub-par work that might not be a reflection of who they really are.
Students who put the time into their career & major exploration, get involved in activities to develop their passions, research and identify schools they feel would best fit them, and spend the time to craft and revised their essays, take great pride and ownership of the results.
We’ve found when a student takes ownership of the process they value and are very proud of their results. With this said, where ever they decide to attend college, they’ll typically be happier because they know they EARNED IT!
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