Choose Your Courses Carefully In High School

Anyone in the college admissions profession will tell you that a student’s transcript is the most important piece of the college application. It aims to be a four-year reflection of how a student has achieved in the classroom. Student achievement is most related to the courses they take and how the information is shared and digested. If a student is not processing the material well, then either the teacher is not presenting it in a way that correlates with their learning style or it may be above what they have been prepared to handle. 

Choosing challenging and appropriate high school classes is the backbone of a strong transcript. Understanding innate strengths and weaknesses help students...

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College Interview Preparation For High School Seniors

The key to a college interview is preparation. It's always important for your child to show their best self, and to ask questions, and share thoughts or concerns about the school or overall college process. 

To Do’s (tell your kids this!)

  • Ask questions (see below)

  • Make and maintain eye-contact

  • Listen attentively

  • Show enthusiasm

  • Be honest

  • Be specific and offer concise responses



  1. What is the average class-size (especially in my field of study?)  And how does it change from freshman to upper-class years?

  2. What are the internship opportunities?

  3. What happens here on weekends?

  4. How about current campus issues?

  5. ...

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It’s Never Too Early To Start

If your child wants to be a candidate at selective colleges in a few years, here are some important things to do:

Select challenging courses. It is imperative that students take courses that will appropriately “stretch” them. Getting good grades is paramount, but if your child takes easier courses than they can probably handle, colleges will know and not be impressed. 

Encourage them to get involved with a variety of activities

Do not allow your child to become a “two-stop” (home and school) kind of kid. Colleges want students who will contribute to their college communities. The best way to show that is for them to contribute to their high school community. ...

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West Coast Best Coast? 4 Things to Consider When Building a College List


These days, more and more East Coast families are becoming more comfortable with the idea of considering a college on the West Coast as they build their college list. Whether this is influenced by the seemingly better weather or the idea of better economic opportunities post-graduation, it is important that your family carefully consider additional factors before making the decision to apply and attend a West Coast institution. Below you will find a list of four things to consider:

  1. Distance from home. If you are located on the East Coast, attending college in California/Washington/Oregon will not be a quick drive away. Instead, approximately 3,000 miles will stand in the way of an impromptu...

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Is Early Decision Right for Your Kid?

Let’s start with what Early Decision is and how it’s different from Early Action. 


Early Decision (ED) is binding and if accepted the student must withdraw all other applications. Early Action (EA) is not binding and the student is free to apply to other colleges and does not have to accept the EA offer until May 1st.


I’ve said it before and we’ll say it again, having a wise Early Decision (ED) strategy is critical to students getting admitted to their first choice schools. For years, with a few exceptions, ED offers students the best possible admissions odds.


In college admissions, especially in early round admissions statistics. For example, just...

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Why October Matters for All High School Students

Most kids have been in school for a month now - if not more - and should all be “settled” into a routine that includes waking up early, staying up later than we want them to and, of course, contemplating the all-important college admissions question:

“What should I be doing now, to get into college later?”

Every month or every year of high school counts towards having more or less college options. Whether it’s grades or activities or visits or essays, high school students who want selective schools are putting in the work now. 

Is your kid putting in the work? 

If you have no clue on what your child should be doing this month as it relates to getting into...

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Beware of Rejective Colleges

Harvard, Princeton, Yale, MIT, Duke, Brown, Northwestern, Vanderbilt……

These names are the most familiar in our culture about being the best and for many of us, the places where we want our kids to go. 


Because they have tons of money, lots of resources and wealthy, well-connected alumni for our children to network with. We want to pave the road of success for our kids and wear a badge of honor for all the sacrifices we have made for them. 

How do I know this?

Well, one, I’ve been working with parents and students for 25 years and many have told me as such, but I was also a parent of a senior in the class of 2022. I will not pretend that I did not want any of...

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Make Sure Your Kid Meets Deadlines

11th and 10th-grade students (and sometimes 9th) often take PSAT in October. Make sure your school registers them by: this Wednesday, September 15th


The Fall ACT and SAT are often taken by seniors who need one or two more cracks at it. 

October ACT registration date is: September 17, 2021

October ACT test date: October 23, 2021

December ACT registration date: November 5, 2021

December ACT test date: December 11, 2021

November SAT registration date: October 8, 2021

November SAT test date: November 6, 2021

December SAT registration date: November 4, 2021

December SAT test date: December 4, 2021


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3 Things To Do To Make Sure Your Child Succeeds in High School

As parents, we all have a lot on our plates. Now that the school year is starting, we’re juggling more than we were 60 days ago. While routine is good, we cannot allow the schools that we send our kids to dictate their futures. We must step in, be present, ask questions and be clear of what we want as the end goal of the high school experience for our children. Yes, health and happiness trump all, but we also want to make sure our children have college options and in order to do that we must do the three things below.

#1 Review the classes and understand the sequence of courses for upcoming years
Too many parents are frustrated at the beginning of their child’s senior year when they learn...

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Why English Teachers Are Not College Essay Experts

Hard truth: college essays and “school essays” are very different. High school students are taught to write essays with a thesis, body paragraphs to prove their points and a conclusion which revisits the thesis in summary. This is not what a college essay should look like. 

A college essay is a story. It’s a slice of your kid’s life when they share something important about who they are. It’s not an autobiography of their 17 or 18 years of life but rather a small sample of an event on which they learned something that they believe will travel with them forever. 

Not all English teachers know this. 

Most English teachers have never worked in college...

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