College Essay Do’s and Don’ts

Even the most stellar applicant is comparatively boring when reduced to just grades and test scores. That's why admissions officers will use your college essay to get to know you better. Here are some Collegewise do's and dont's to make sure they like what they read. 1.  DON'T try to impress admissions officers. Don't inject […]

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How to Ruin Your College Application

Jay Mathews of the Washington Post does it again.  We love Jay's take on the college admissions process because he's a member of the press who takes every opportunity to inject a healthy perspective, not fear, into his writing on education.  In fact, we like his book Harvard Schmarvard so much that we give it […]

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October News for Friends and Family

Back from NACAC Kevin, Arun and Alex enjoyed our stay at the annual NACAC (National Association for College Admissions Counseling Conference).  Some people get excited about seeing Angelina Jolie or Leonardo DiCaprio on the street, but NACAC lets us meet and learn from people like Parke Muth (at left), an admissions officer from University of […]

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Five Things Every College Wants You to Be

It’s that time of year when seniors begin sitting down to fill out college applications.  And when they do, a lot of those seniors will be wondering, “What do these colleges want to hear?” and “What are they looking for ?” and “Would winning the presidency of a small but quickly-developing country improve my chances???” […]

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September News for Friends and Family

Happy Birthday to Us Collegewise celebrated our 8th birthday on August 16, as it was exactly eight years ago that Kevin officially submitted the "Doing Business As" paperwork to County Clerk’s office in Orange County.  Since that day back in 1999, we’ve helped over 2,000 kids apply to college, and Collegewise students have attended over […]

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Not The Same Old Back-To-School Advice

Get good grades.  Get involved.  Get good test scores.  It’s all good advice.  But it’s advice you’ve probably heard before… a lot.  As students head back to school, here are five bits of Collegewise admissions advice to help you get in to college that might be new for you.  1.  Practice the art of participating […]

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For the Admissions Officers…

As Arun and I gear up for our annual trip to NACAC, I remembered a conversation I was lucky enough to have with Llloyd Thacker of the Education Conservancy at last year’s conference.  The subject was college fairs, and how so many admissions officers are under enormous pressure to generate student interest in their schools.  […]

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Five Tips for Parents of New College Freshmen

If you’re a parent preparing to send your son or daughter off to be a freshman in college, congratulations.  This is one of those things you’ve likely dreamed about doing since you first became a parent, and now it’s about to happen.  Every year about this time, we send our Collegewise parents a list of […]

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I am not a tuba player. And I’m OK with that.

When we go to college admissions conferences, we’ll always attend any session in which Bruce Poch, Dean of Admissions from Pomona College, is participating.  He’s outspoken, honest, and refreshingly forthright.  With so much mystery surrounding the admissions process, it’s nice to hear from a decision maker who’s comfortable discussing what admissions officers look for–and what […]

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News for Friends and Family…

New faces in the Collegewise crowdThere was a time not that long ago when we used to imagine what it would be like to have admissions officers leave their posts and come to work with us.  Then Arun joined us in 2004 from Caltech and Christina from the SUNY system in 2005.  And this week, […]

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