Five Questions You Should Ask About Your College Essay(s)

Are you deep into college essay writing at this point?  YOU SHOULD BE!  It’s time to get those essays going, so you don’t have to spend your entire Thanksgiving (and winter?!) break working on your college applications.  Just a little time each day will add up to save you a chunk of time later!

Here are five important questions to ask yourself as you proofread and revise your essays:

1.  Do I express something new about myself, something that the reader won’t know just from reading my resume or activities list?
Your college essay is your chance to go beyond your resume, explaining the significance of the things you’ve done in your life.  Don’t just rehash a list of your accomplishments.  They’ve seen that!  Give them some of your personality.  Tell a story that really shows who you are, and what you might contribute to their campus community.

2.  Am I memorable and/or likeable?
This is really important.  When college admission co...more

Tags: college essays, college essay writing, college applications

Ellen Gaddie

At: 10/2/2017 1:03:42 PM
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FAFSA & CSS/PROFILE Filing Time is Now!

The Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) is officially open today, October 1, 2017. FAFSA aid is given on a first come-first serve basis, so it’s important to file early. Families of new or returning college students need to complete the form using 2016 tax information.

Valuable advice from Money Magazine, Oct. 2016, “4 Things to Know About the New FAFSA”

“Just submitting a FAFSA will automatically qualify you for a low-cost federal student loan of up to $5,500 for freshman year....The FAFSA is also required for many other kinds of aid, including work/study jobs; federal parent PLUS loans; scholarships from state agencies, private foundations, and colleges; and, in a few cases, merit aid.”

Steps:

1) Go to www.fafsa.ed.gov or https://cssprofile.collegeboard.org/

2) Student creates a Federal Student Aid Identification Number (FSA ID). 

3) Parents create their own FSA ID.  “Parent” refers to a biological or adoptive parent or a person de...more

Tags: FAFSA, CSS/PROFILE

Ellen Gaddie

At: 9/22/2017 2:15:56 PM
0 comments

Why Good College Research Matters

One of the first questions we ask our students is this: have you thought about what type of college is a good fit for you? The answer 90% of the time: "I have no idea." My other favorite answer: "I haven’t been to college yet, so how would I know?"

I know what they’re thinking, “Come on! I’m just a junior in high school! I don’t need to have everything figured out!” That much is true, you don’t need to have everything figured out. But you do need to start thinking about it, and start going a little deeper than just the 3 best colleges in your state you’ve already heard about. There are many reasons why doing good college research is more important than you think.  Here’s a few:

You are the one going to college, therefore, you need to know what YOU want.

This seems obvious, but it’s hard these days to not let all the college talk, parent talk, and peer pressure get to you. Maybe you’ve grown up in a home where mom and dad are die-hard fans and alu...more

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Step-by-Step Guide to Completing the Common App

This is your step-by-step, section-by-section guide to completing the Common App!  Below you’ll find instructional videos that will guide you through each section of the third “tab” in the Common Application – which is the heart of the application itself.

We hope these short videos will answer your questions about each section of the Common App!  The videos below discuss each individual section. Here’s our YouTube playlist with all of the Common App videos described below!

Completing the Common App – Profile Section
In this 6-minute video, we review how to fill out the Profile section of the Common Application.  This section requests basic information about where you live, what languages you speak, your citizenship and a few other details.

Completing the Common App – Family Section
We cover filling out the Family section in under three minutes!  You’ll need to enter information about your mom and dad – including where they att...more

Tags: Common App, Filling out the Common App, College Applications, Should I report my tests on the Common App

Why You Shouldn't Apply to all Eight Ivy League Schools

Many people mistakenly believe that applying to a larger number of “reach” or top-tier schools increases the chances of being admitted to one.  There are two big reasons why this belief not only is wrong, but jeopardizes students’ chances of admission to even one of the top schools on their lists.

Reason #1 Why You Shouldn’t Apply to All 8 Ivies

The first reason you shouldn’t apply to all 8 Ivy League schools, or limit your list to the top of the US News list, is that they are different in fundamental ways!  If you love and fit at Columbia, then Brown would probably not be a great match for you!  If you think Duke or Johns Hopkins would be perfect for you, it’s unlikely you’d fit well at Yale.  And if you aren’t a good fit, that’s probably going to come through in your essays – or at least other applicants’ essays are likely to be stronger than yours.  Top-tier colleges aren’t interested in students who are only interested in their top ranking, and the bumper...more

Tags: Ivy League, College applications, highly selective colleges, college essay, college supplements

Need a Job after College? A Career Center Adviser or IEC can help!

Four years of college can fly before a student realizes it.  By junior and senior year, that fateful question becomes ever prominent:  what will I do after college?  

For most students, taking the time to work closely with the career center adviser on campus can make this prospect less daunting.  Students should visit their career center and connect with an adviser at least by January of their freshman year.   This is an invaluable step to gain assistance in finding summer internships, employment and even advice on working or studying abroad.  All these steps strengthen the resume and help students learn more about professions for consideration.  Working with an adviser early and consistently each year of college builds a relationship that will pay off with big dividends by senior year, when assistance with the job search is most critical.

If for whatever reason a student does not make those connections, and finds him or herself needing help and...more

Tags: Careers, Job Search, MyCollegeAdvisor.Net Blog, reseme, Resume, College Guidance