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College Admissions Blog

The college admissions process is confusing and overwhelming. Start here to get your questions answered.

Admissions Tips
Bethany Goldszer

How to Organize College Applications

When it comes to preparing for college applications, first you want to make sure that you get organized. It does not matter if you have impressive grades and test scores. Or if you are super involved with extracurricular activities and your teachers speak about you with high regard. All of this means nothing if you do not have a process or timeline for submitting your college applications.

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get financial aid
Financial Aid
Bethany Goldszer

How to Pay for College

The costs of higher education are rising. According to a recent College Board survey, today’s college education costs approximately $24,061 for an in-state public college and $47,831 for a private college, up 3% since last year.Inadequate planning through the college financial aid process can bring the burden of unnecessary debt in the form of unsubsidized federal loans, private bank loans, or home equity lines of credit. In our years of working with middle- and upper-income families, we have learned that you can save as much as 50% off of tuition costs with proper planning.

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writing a college essay
11th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

Writing a College Essay

Writing a college essay is not like writing an English class essay. Rather, the college essay is a personal statement that captures who you are as a student and why you should be admitted into college. In about 650 words, the college essay should be well written and compelling, engaging, and deeply personal.

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10th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

Applying Test-Optional? Here’s How to Decide.

As an increasing number of selective and highly selective colleges go test-optional, it shows that institutions are recognizing that it takes more than a score to show a student’s promise. But before deciding whether or not to submit your scores, consider the pros and cons of applying test-optional.

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stand out college application
10th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

7 Tips for Creating a Stand Out College Application

Creating a stand out college application is important. Colleges receive thousands of applications every year. More than 80% of colleges accept half of the students who apply. The other 20% are selective schools that struggle to differentiate between students who have outstanding grades and test scores. Therefore, selective colleges will depend on you to help them decide. You can get an edge in admissions if you spend time early on showing them how you are an authentic and unique fit.

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12th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

7 Big Mistakes to Avoid When You Apply for Financial Aid

The cost of a college education in the United States is rising. According to the College Board, it can cost your family $23,890 to send your student to an in-state public school, and $32,410 for a private school. To help American families with college costs, federal and state governments and colleges give more than $200 billion annually in financial aid. Your student can apply for financial aid to receive support to help meet the costs of obtaining a college education.

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12th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

A to Z Guide to College Transition

Seniors – by now you have received your admission letter and are ready to enroll in college. Great! Read this list of steps to take between now and the first day of classes to ensure a smooth college transition. Consult with the enrollment letter provided by your school, and keep in close contact with your college for important updates about your enrollment status.

As you navigate the enrollment process, I hope you find this A to Z guide to college transition helpful, along with other tips that will lead to matriculation success.

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Applying for financial aid
Financial Aid
Bethany Goldszer

How to Negotiate a Financial Aid Award

You may remember months ago you completed the Free Application for Financial Student Aid (FAFSA). The FAFSA form, sponsored by the U.S. State Department of Education provided your family with an index called the Expected Family Contribution (EFC). This amount told colleges how much you could afford to pay for the cost of attendance, including tuition, room, board, and fees. With this information, colleges formulated a financial aid package comprised of scholarships, grants, work-study, and loans. If the college does not provide your family with a competitive package, read this article to learn tips on negotiating a better financial aid package. Also, download a free sample template letter.

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10th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

Can My Student Apply to College Undecided About a Major?

Last week, a mom emailed me asking if it was okay that her son does not know what he wants to study in college. She shared her experience visiting a college campus where a campus tour guide asked each student in the group to say their name and what they planned to major in. The mom wrote, “Kids spoke of studying biostatistics, history, forensics, and other subjects I have never heard of. When it was Sammy’s turn, he shrugged and said Dothraki (not sure if you’re a Game of Thrones fan, but this is not a real language…). The whole group laughed. I was so embarrassed. What should I do?”

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12th Grade
Bethany Goldszer

How the Admissions Committee Works

After you submit your application, it must pass the initial computer screening process, impress the readers, and be memorable and strong enough for you to survive the admission committee’s deliberations.

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Accepted
Bethany Goldszer

You’re Accepted to College! Now what?

Getting accepted to college will be the first of many great accomplishments in your life. After crafting the perfect application – taking SAT exams, preparing for interviews, and writing essays that best captures you — the hard work paid off. But what comes next?

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6 Steps to Mastering a College Fair

College fairs are often overwhelming and intimidating. Hundreds of eager parents and students pack into a convention center. They rotate around the room to learn about what colleges all over the country have to offer. Attending a college fair is an opportunity to get to know schools, meet the admissions officers who represent them, and begin the journey of building a relationship that demonstrates your interest and fit for the college.

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Financial Aid
Bethany Goldszer

4 Overlooked Ways to Pay for College

High college costs are commonly a pain point families are tormented by when planning their student’s future. Start a 529 Plan. A 529 Plan is an investment account that you can use to save for higher education expenses.

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