Frequently Asked Questions
Why should we pay for college consulting when it’s free in the guidance office of our school?
By no means do we aim to replace your guidance counselor, but instead we intend to supplement that guidance. The line going out the average guidance counselor’s office is quite long! According to the US Department of Education, the average public high school student only receives 38 minutes of college guidance directly from their guidance counselor. In addition, the average guidance counselor has nearly 500 students they are responsible for and can only spend about 22% of their time working on college related issues. It is important for each student to develop a strong relationship with their guidance counselor because they are an important part of the college admission team, but the time they have available is more limited than a college admission consultant’s.
Researching colleges and universities is a full time job! When you hire an independent education consultant, you get to choose how much help you receive and when you receive that help. Appointment times are convenient and can be done in person or through internet applications such as: Skype, Facetime or Google+ along with a powerful online student portal. Feel free to contact us for more details.
When is the best time to begin working on the college admission process?
Most students begin this process at the end of sophomore year or the beginning of junior year, but students who wish to have help in curriculum choices begin as early as summer before freshman year. It is much easier to help a student develop their resume from the beginning than it is to deal with the results later. By beginning the process before freshman year, we have the opportunity to help the student naturally grow their interests, knowledge, abilities and skills and identify areas of strength and weaknesses early on. Some of the most important work done happens when an appropriate 4 year plan for high school is created in order to ensure that the student will be able to take the appropriate amount of rigor. However, it is never too late. Career assessments to help identify a good match major can be done even into the early stages of college.
Do you work only with students in Columbus, Indiana?
Absolutely not! I have worked with students from all over the country with the help of video conferencing. In addition, I am available for face-to-face meetings somewhat regularly in southwest Florida in the areas of Sanibel/Captiva, Ft Myers and Naples and throughout Southern and Central Indiana. I use a student portal system that allows me to communicate with my students and their parents to keep students moving towards their goals.
What does college consulting cost?
Because the process is different for each student, the cost can vary. College consulting comprehensive packages throughout the midwest can vary, but typically cost several thousand dollars. I made the decision to work with families on an hourly basis, ensuring that the fee is a fair price for each family I work with. Typically, I meet with freshman and sophomores approximately 2-3 hours, juniors approximately 6-8 hours, and seniors begin their work in the summer with essay and applications and then we meet most weeks until the work is done.
What kind of students do you work with?
I work with a whole range of students including those interested in applying to local schools, liberal arts schools, technical schools or the Ivy League.
How do you help with college essays?
After being trained by a professional college application essay instructor, I have developed a system for keeping students on track to complete their essays on time, minimize the total number needed for the various schools and scholarships and ensure their voice is heard and a strong story is told. By using 10 simple steps, I help the students break down the difficult task into a seamless process that naturally produces a strong personal narrative that answers the important questions colleges ask students. The students work through this process using their own custom portal where revisions and drafts are uploaded and shared until the final product is ready to be submitted.
Do you help with the financial aid process?
Yes. The college list created for your student will take into consideration your financial situation. In addition to providing help with the financial need based aid process (FAFSA and institutional aid), other scholarship opportunities and merit aid will be researched for your student. Advice on how to create a system for applying for outside scholarships is also provided. Keep in mind that the average student does not pay full list price for their college education. Specific knowledge about how the different schools award aid is applied to come up with an appropriate college list for each student.