I'm excited to share my September newsletter with you!
In this edition I highlight:
The counseling calendar for September
A great free resource for understanding admission testing from my friends at Compass Prep, who provide some of the most informed, effective and efficient prep out there. Among the terrific data and infographics, you'll find SAT/ ACT concordance tables, advice on understanding test optional policies, and more useful topics.
A free step-by-step video guide to completing the Common Application. This excellent video and website guide is a project of the Independent Educational Consultants' Association, and the admission office at Oregon State U. There are contributions from experts from many different corners of the admission and counseling worlds. Share it with a senior you know!
A look at some tools I subscribe to that empower clients with data-driven admission analyses and research tools.
Some timeless advice for tackling personal essay writing.
An informative podcast interview that explains some of the misunderstood elements of college cost and aid. Ron Lieber, NYT finance writer, has become one of the foremost current experts on how college finances and financial aid actually work. (I highly recommend his informative book!)
It's hard to believe that we're deep into September already! As they settle into the joys of being the leaders of their campus (not to mention, just being back on campus after a challenging few years,) my senior students are working on continuing to shape their college lists, just as they also dive into drafting essays and supplemental writing for those applications they have identified as “definites” for their application list. On that note, you'll find a link above to some of the most universally applicable writing advice I've come across.
There are two platforms I feature in this newsletter that help support the processes of researching and list finalizing. For my students who do not have a school-based college counseling platform, I provide a MaiaLearning/ Guided Path account. These companies have merged to provide a platform for managing college suggestions and research while shaping an eventual final list. I am also excited to share that I am using the College Kickstart set of tools to help students get a clear look at admission likelihoods, based on the most recent global data on application outcomes at many popular colleges and universities. Read more at the link above.
I'm looking ahead to theNACACNational College Admission Conference, which I'll attend in Houston later this week, with several thousand other admission and counseling colleagues. For people like me who grew up in this profession, it's a kind of annual homecoming, with a lot of catching up and a lot of hugs, especially after the last 3 years (we are an outgoing and affectionate bunch, by and large.) October brings continued digging in to application work, initial explorations with younger students, and in my next newsletter, some thoughts on those rankings that just came out (spoiler: they are not reliable indicators of undergraduate educational quality…)
If you or someone you know still needs application help, I have limited space remaining for one or two seniors who would like support with the college application process this fall. If we hit the ground running, we can shape a list and get applications together before winter break.
-This is the ideal time for this year's 11th graders to get on board with a comprehensive counseling package, and begin the process of self-reflection, initial list building and research.
-Families with students in grades 8-10 can begin an advising package to do some exploration of interests, and check in with me as questions arise on course selection, extracurricular engagement, test prep, and other topics related to making the most of high school and preparing for a low-stress college search.