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THE SAVVY APPLICANT

THE SAVVY APPLICANT

A College Admissions Blog

How To Choose Your College Application Essay Topic

Eureka, Rosebud, Cheesecake? A great idea for a college admission essay. I saw her eyes light up as she said it and there was no turning back. Rima (not her real name) was brilliant, no doubt about it, and she had the grades and test scores to back it up. An aspiring physician, she kept up a Herculean schedule of activities, internships and community activism outside of school. She was Read More

Tennis Recruiting for Intermediate Players

When it comes to college tennis recruiting, many of the best colleges recruit players with modest skill levels. Don’t sell yourself short!

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Don't Bore the College Admissions Committee

With the common application personal statement and individual colleges’ supplemental essays, students applying to 10 -12 colleges (a reasonable number) may have to write 20 essays to complete their applications. This can be an unbelievable source of stress while trying to keep up Read More

5 Keys to Meaningful College Visits

College visits are a huge opportunity. They can be daunting to plan and expensive to go on, but whenever possible, savvy applicants will take advantage of them. There is so much more than the official (read boring) information session and campus tour that will help you, first, evaluate if a college is a good fit for you and second, maximize your probability of admission to your top choices.

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8 Things Savvy College Applicants Do During Summer

After a grueling junior year filled with AP courses and standardized tests, there is no doubt that soon-to-be high school seniors have earned some rest and relaxation. At the same time, it is impossible to deny that the college application season has begun and that savvy applicants will take advantage of the summer. Do these 8 things over the summer to increase your chances of admission to your top choice colleges and minimize stress later this fall.

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3 Ways to Minimize the Cost of College

The cost of college and the amount of debt students are being burdened with is a major problem in this country. While some (like Forest Gump), are lucky enough to have invested in “some kind of fruit company” that made it so big they don’t have to worry about money, the rest of us do. Even families that are too affluent to receive any need-based assistance often ask us about strategies to minimize the cost of college. Read More

Free Ivy League Courses

As college admission consultants we advise students on how to get in to Ivy League and other selective universities. We mentor and coach students through all aspects of their application process, including their college admission essays and interviews, but the most important aspect of what we do, if we meet a student early enough in the process, is help them develop and pursue their intellectual interests. 

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The Best Deal in Education

Going to college is expensive. It is so expensive that many are beginning to question its wo rth through a cost/benefit analysis.  Of course, there needs to be a distinction made between educati on, which few question as a universal good, and four or more years away at a college.   Many of you may remember the scene from the film, Good Will Hunting, where the autodidact Will (played by Matt Damon) outshines his Harvard educated interlocutor in a barroom debate of sorts.  In the scene, Will points out the fact that he can get the same education for the price of a library card, Free!  Read More

How To Choose The SAT or ACT

I am not a huge fan of standardized testing, but the SAT and ACT are not going away any time soon. While there are an increasing number of colleges that are “test optional” (see fairtest.org), the SAT and ACT remain important for admission to selective colleges. Traditionally the SAT was taken by students on the coasts, since that is what colleges there required, while the ACT was taken by most students in the middle of the country for the same reason.  Today, however, since all colleges except either test, many students elect to take both and use conversion charts to see which “looks better.” There have always been differences in the two tests however, and therefore different strategies for success

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High Achievement vs. Intellectual Passion

For admission to Ivy league or other selective colleges and universities like Stanford, MIT, Northwestern or Duke students must show both high achievement and intellectual passion. So what is the difference and how do you demonstrate it? High achievement is the more easily measurable of the two. It is defined by earning high grades in a rigorous curriculum and high scores on standardized tests like the ACT, SAT and SAT Subject Tests. There is no substitute for high achievement. To compete for admission at the most selective colleges students must be high achievers relative to their peers.

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