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Interpreting Your Financial Award Letters Can Be a Complicated Task

Applying and subsequently gaining admission to a college or university is an exciting time for both you and your student. However, the exhilaration of an acceptance letter is invariably followed by the typically more sobering award letter; wherein you learn what will be expected of you financially. That is at least, their intended purpose. According to financial expert Mark Kantrowitz, almost 1/3 of financial aid award letters underestimate some of the costs of attendance, while other costs go unacknowledged altogether.…

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The 2 Questions You Must Always Ask Yourself

I often think about two basic questions which have shown up multiple times in my life and will continue to keep me thinking.  Since I struggle with these questions, I am especially empathetic to young people as I ask them and they ask themselves these important questions. Questions You Must Always Ask Yourself: #1 - What do you want? This first question is usually the harder of the two and the more important of the two.  We have so many…

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5 College Preparation Questions for Juniors

High school juniors:  Are you getting ready for your college search?  It’s time, and here are 5 college preparation questions to get you started: What should I major in? Have you chosen a career? What major will you choose?  Of course, you’ll need to know the answers to these questions. It is exactly the right time to explore that, even if you think you know.  A comprehensive assessment of your interests AND your aptitudes will help you clarify careers that…

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College Accepted! Now Compare Your Choices

Congratulations! You’ve gotten your first (few) college acceptance letters. There are likely more to come. You should feel great about your college accepts. (And, frankly, you should get over any rejections that you may have received—really! There are happy lessons to be learned from your rejections, truly! Watch for my blog on that topic).  Right now, it is all about how to compare your choices.  Now, the ball is back in your court so you still have work to do!…

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How Your College Essay is Like Your Face

It’s that time when many HS Seniors are thinking about writing and revising their college essays.  Some believe that the essay must stand out and be different so that the reader remembers them.  Others feel the need to show a certain kind of perfection and intensity in their essays so they write, re-write, edit and edit again. Still others write it at the last possible moment without giving it any editing in the hopes that they will make the submission…

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Why Do Families Hire A College Consultant?

Some parents have the time and energy to become experts in whatever interests their child.  But most don't.  Parents find coaches to help their kids with the sports they gain and lose interest in over the years.  They hire tutors to help with ACT and SAT test preparation.  They hire nutritionists or medical experts when their child is experiencing physical problems.  Why not hire a college consultant for the college application process? Who is a qualified consultant? The majority of…

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Award Letter

Your HS Transcript: The Most Important Factor in Admission

A transcript always tells a story.  Anyone who looks at transcripts often will have these questions and thoughts as they look at the transcript. What classes did the student choose? Did the student chose the hardest classes available to them? Are there patterns that can be identified? For instance, does the student do better on reading/writing classes or classes with tests, like math and science classes? Did the student have certain years where their grades were stronger? Are there any trends,…

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How Many Legs Are On Your “College Admissions Chair”?

My College Planning Team's President, co-founder and Academic Team leader, Stephanie Kennedy, discusses the importance of having multiple legs on your "college admissions chair". https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SJkdahZFnx4&feature=youtu.be Need Help With the College Admissions Process? My College Planning Team's Academic Team can assist your student with all aspects of the college search, application and selection process. Contact Stephanie Kennedy for more information or click here to schedule a free consultation. My College Planning Team Serves the Following Chicagoland Areas: Arlington Heights · Aurora ⋅ Barrington ⋅…

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What is Demonstrated Interest and Does it Really Matter?

As you begin your college search, your college visits, and start thinking about college applications, you’re likely to hear about demonstrated interest.  Usually, that means that you show (demonstrate) the college your (genuine) interest in them. Do Colleges Care? There are 3 possible ways to consider this: Colleges don’t care at all Colleges want to know if you are interested Colleges track your every contact with them All three are known to be true, but in very few cases can you…

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Letters of Recommendation for College

Your college applications usually require one or more letters of recommendation from a high school teacher or counselor. Let's take a look at why letters of recommendation matter and how to go about getting them: Colleges use these to supplement the rest of your application.  Good letters of recommendation (LOR) will strengthen your application. Specifically, the letter should support and reinforce that you can handle college-level coursework in your chosen field. Determine 3 or more teachers who know you the best. Be…

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