Our Collegewise counselors work with A students, C students, and everyone in between. We don’t care what your grades or test scores are—we’ll go all-in to help you find and apply to the right colleges, and hopefully, we’ll help your family enjoy the process together.
But we can’t do the work for a student. Instead, we promise to match the student’s own work output.
Sometimes a parent is hoping we can get a student motivated. Motivation is a frequent by-product of our work, but it’s not something we can sell, promise, or just install into a student.
An imbalanced working relationship between a student and a counselor isn’t good for either party. A student who sits back and waits for his college counselor to pick the schools, assemble the applications, and somehow transform half-hearted essays into compelling writing isn’t just being lazy—he’s turning over his college process to someone else. It’s the student, not the counselor, who will ultimately have to live and learn for four years at whatever the final college choice is. Good help and advice is one thing. But it’s not a good idea for any student to be a passive observer during his own college planning process.
This works both ways. A private counselor who doesn’t spend time to suggest appropriate colleges, doesn’t talk about the options, doesn’t give good advice or reply to questions or take some responsibility for the process isn’t offering the kind of expertise and support that the family has every right to expect for their money.
So we make this promise to every student—we’ll match your work ethic. As hard as you’re willing to work on your own behalf, that’s how hard we’ll work for you.
We don’t do it as a punishment. We do it because it’s the only way. If you research your schools and have detailed feedback, we have a lot to talk about. If you take the time to give detailed, thoughtful answers to our essay brainstorming questions, we’ll have plenty of potential stories to invite you to share with us. When you complete your application drafts on time, we’ve got work to do right away to start reviewing them.
But when a student doesn’t do those things, there’s just not that much work for us to do. We’re not playing favorites with the students. We can only work where there’s work to be done.
The best private counselors feel a deep sense of responsibility for the students. It’s not just the smart way to run a business—it’s what you should feel when you’re entrusted with a student’s college process.
But that responsibility shouldn’t translate into doing the work for a student. When you feel that happening, step back, invite the student to step up, and promise to match their work output.