What would you do identically?

“Looking back, what would you do differently?” It’s a useful question any time you break down an experience, a journey, anything where you can extract some learning to apply the next time around. But in the drive to address would could have gone better, don’t forget to look at what went well. Learning from what […]

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Students make colleges great

In his recent piece, “Today’s Applicants, Tomorrow’s Reputations,” teacher and college counselor Josh Stephen manages to tackle the futility of ranking colleges while simultaneously offering some reassurance to seniors in the face of disappointing news from a dream school. The entire article is worth the read, but this portion in particular could be a great […]

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Teach our children well

College counselors often come across parents who couch their kids as victims in the college admissions process. They’re victims of a system that seems unfair or of purported preferential treatment toward other students. And in some of the more bizarre expressions, they’re victims of the lack of a life tragedy (which is now being labeled […]

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The problem with pros and cons lists

For seniors who will soon be making decisions about where to attend college next fall, don’t expect a pros and cons list alone to make the decision clear. There are two big problems with using these lists to make a big decision. 1. Humans don’t make big decisions entirely rationally (and in some cases, our decisions […]

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Leadership lessons are everywhere

It’s easy for high school students to fall into the trap of believing that leadership is reserved for leadership positions. The editor of the yearbook. The captain of the hockey team. The treasurer of the student body. Elected or appointed positions are almost always reserved for a select few. They’re the leaders. Everyone else is […]

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Where accepted status won’t change

Brennan Bernard’s latest Forbes piece, “A Letter To College Applicants,” is written for students. But it really should be shared with their parents, too. Parents, your kids are going to need you to help them see the message conveyed within, that their life will be about many things bigger and more important than any decision […]

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Need class scheduling advice?

Students, if you’re choosing which classes to take next year and would like some expert advice, join Collegewise counselors Lindsay O’Sullivan and Amy Chatterjee in our upcoming free webinar. Making the Grade: Class Selection for the College Fast Track Wednesday, March 6, 2019 5 p.m. – 6 p.m. PST From how many honors and AP […]

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When all you can do is the best you can do

Parents, imagine that you’ve just applied for ten new jobs at different organizations around the country. You’ll be receiving decisions from all of them in the next 30 days. Each opportunity has its own pros and cons. And each will require that you make a significant life change—new responsibilities, new co-workers, maybe even a new […]

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Yes to their yes

Seniors, as you wrestle with the wait to receive decisions from your colleges, it’s natural to assign a lot of gravity to these impending notifications. Other people are seemingly deciding your next four years for you. It’s natural to think about the tidal shift that a yes or no from any college will carry with […]

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Where can you take options off the table?

How can a softball pitcher keep her focus and retire the side when getting shelled on the mound while the runs are adding up? How can a speech and debate competitor keep his composure when he loses his train of thought? How can the teenage part-time restaurant hostess manage a growing crowd of hungry, impatient […]

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