Should You Help Your Teen Write Their College Essay?

If you have an 11th grader, I hope you've begun to discuss the plan for the summer and how your child plans to work on their college application. 

Are you aware of the importance of college admissions essays? 

As the founder and Chief Education Officer of Strategic Admissions Advice, I understand how crucial essays are to the college application process. With the current test-optional trend, essays are even more critical than ever.

Most schools require essays, and the Common Application, which is used by over 900 schools, offers seven different personal essay options. In addition, there are often supplemental essays. Therefore, parents and students must understand the essay process and how...

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Use College Admissions Data to Make Good Decisions

As a parent, you want the best for your child. You want them to get into the best college possible and are willing to do whatever it takes to help them achieve that goal. But with so many colleges, how do you know where to start?

One way to narrow down your options is to use data. Several websites and tools can help you compare different colleges based on factors like academic reputation, cost, and location. This information can be invaluable in helping you make informed decisions about where to apply.

Using data may not guarantee acceptance to your dream school, but it can help you avoid applying to schools where your child's chances of acceptance are slim. Please don't be ignorant of the data; use...

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Cost : One of Four Pillars To Consider When Building a College List for Your Teen

There's a lot to consider when building your teen's college list. As a company, we help our clients think about the four pillars:

  • Cost
  • Location
  • Possible Major
  • Possible Career

Today we'll talk about cost because it's America, where money matters, and college is expensive.

Click below to watch my video discussing cost when it's time to build your teen's college list.  

So I want to ask you a few questions.

Do you know which colleges you should start researching? 

Do you know how much that college costs?

Do you understand financial aid terms such as "scholarships," "grants," "loans," "merit aid," and "FAFSA forms"?"

Have you visited each college's website and looked at their...

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Where Your Child Goes to College Is Important

Not for you, but for them.

Your job as a parent is to offer perspectives about their potential educational experience based upon your own education and life experiences but NOT to suggest that some colleges are “better” than others. Yes, different colleges have different resources and yes, we associate selectivity with being better, but the most important thing your child can do is have a college list that will best suit their desires for a major and career AND factor the cost and location of the school which affects you.

How can you and your child decide how important a school is?

#1 - Know your child and ask them, and yourself, do you think they will develop there in a way that will be...

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College List Builder Helps You Get a Return On Your Investment

With college costs ranging from $25K to $75K annually, a natural question for any parent to ask is “what will be the ROI (Return On Investment) for my kid’s college education?” ROI is the measurement of the difference between total earnings in the 10 years post-graduation, divided by the total cost of college. The higher the ROI, the better a financial bet the school is on average. While parents can ask a college admissions office this question, it really should be directed towards their child who has the responsibility of “paying” for their education by multiplying the cost of college by potential professional earnings. Any parent who asks this question is not expecting...

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Don’t Let the Guidance Counselor “Under-Match” Your Kid’s College List

I used to be a school guidance counselor and I understand what they go through. It’s a lot to work with a caseload of kids and have to advise them on their classes, tests and college lists. I honestly believe that they want the best for your child but sometimes they’re just too overwhelmed to give you the best advice that you need to succeed. 

First of all, what many of us called “guidance counselors” are now supposed to be called “school counselors” or “Deans.” The title may have changed, but the job description remains the same:

  • Help all students to apply academic achievement strategies
  • Help all students plan for postsecondary school options...
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