Financial Aid Appeal:  How and Why

You’ve just received your Financial Aid Award Letter from your favorite college, and it just isn’t enough.  Besides the thud of your disappointed heart hitting the floor, you hear a small voice in your head, “I’ve heard you can negotiate your college costs!!” Whoa there!  Take a step back.  That’s not quite true.  Accepting or declining a financial aid award is not like negotiating on a used car!  Prepare for a bit more courteous and considerate approach, and read on.…

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Make the College Fair Worth Your Time

Your local college fair is one of the best chances for juniors to visit with admissions representatives from a variety of colleges all at once.  For sophomores, it is a great time to begin looking.  I highly recommend that you attend!  Here are my tips to make your college fair well worth your time: Arrive Early so that you can use all the time you have productively.  Parking is a bear!  Allow for the extra time!  Admissions counselors get exhausted talking to…

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5 Factors to Weigh in Deciding Your College

Deciding your college can still be a daunting task, even when you've been accepted to your favorite schools,. After all, you are not simply choosing where to live for the next 4 years, you are choosing your alma mater, your mentors, your future friends and colleagues.  Clearly, this is not to be taken lightly.  Here are a few things to consider seriously as you continue deciding your college. More Than Your Major Aside from your chosen major, how is this college…

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Growing in Your Faith During College

Leaving for college doesn't mean you have to leave your faith behind at home. And, choosing a faith-centered college over a public university doesn't automatically mean your faith during college will strengthen. Everyone knows that college has many distractions. Studying. Parties. Events. Travel. Relationships. It is easy to push aside the faith community of your youth. The years spent in college are a perfect opportunity for you to explore your faith and continue to grow spiritually. In fact, some students…

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College Safety: How to Stay Safe on Campus

Many college students are simply unaware that they must look out for their own safety and security at college.  This may be the first time that they are away from home without a family member or close friend to look after them.  They must get used to new ways of doing things, a new place and a new schedule which may leave them walking around unfamiliar areas at odd times of the day and night. I always suggest that students find…

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Scholarship Displacement

Top Scholarship Myths

  These are some scholarship myths I hear frequently in my role as an independent college admissions counselor: Scholarship Myth #1: Everyone has a scholarship. This is not true. Most money comes from the college itself in the form of grants or loans. Most people do not apply or use scholarship money. Schools often use the word “scholarship” in reference to many different things, even things like a “tuition discount.” Beware of the use of the word “scholarship.” Scholarship Myth #2: You should…

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Student Work

What is the Most Important Skill for Finding a Good Job?

Many people have been over-emphasizing the fact that students need special credentials and certifications to prove themselves (for example, see Jeffrey Selingo's newest book.)  They take endless classes, get a myriad of certifications and read informative articles to educate themselves. I think this is the wrong approach. Instead, I think we need to do a better job of articulating what we have learned. People in the work force today seem to be having an unusually hard time articulating their skills. …

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Best Ways to Graduate On Time in 4 Years

The average college student is taking 6 years to get a 4 year degree.  Don’t be part of that statistic!  Use these tips to graduate on time. Do your research!  When you are looking at colleges, look carefully at graduation rates and make sure that the majority of students are graduating in 4 years.  If they aren’t, ask why this is happening.  Is it because they run out of money?  Is it because they don’t have enough professors in certain…

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The Best Time to Report Your SAT Scores

I decided to tackle this topic after I received a call from the worried parent of one of my students. Her son (named Zach for our purposes) had just taken the SAT for the first time and was in a near panic. After I experienced that sinking feeling any tutor of the " I am in this biz to make a difference" mindset is familiar with, mom told me the real problem. When Zach registered for the SAT, he did…

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3 Questions to Answer Before You Choose Your College

Your college acceptances and awards are finally finding their way to your inbox.  How will you finally choose your college?  Even though you may have a favorite, we advise you ask yourself several tough questions before you make your choice. Is This College Where I Felt the Greatest Connection to Faculty? So why the big deal with the college faculty?  Because they are your primary mentors in the college environment.  They will help guide your reason for being there—to learn…

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