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Top 6 Reasons to Hire an Education Consultant

Today’s college landscape is highly competitive, and students sometimes thrive with additional guidance from a college specialist.  An independent education consultant (IEC) helps families with the college admissions process, ideally starting sophomore year.  Here are some reasons why families choose to hire a college consultant.  

  1. We maximize the rewards of investing in your child’s higher education experience.  College will be one of the most significant investments you will ever make.  The high price tag of many colleges and universities often overshadows the application process.  Making the wrong college choice can be costly because it can add years to the time necessary to complete an undergraduate degree and cause emotional stress to students.  The advice of a college consultant can help your child find the best college for them.  We generate a balanced and personalized college list for each student to provide the best admissions outcomes.
  2. We define short-term and long-term goals for students.  Many high school students are unsure of their aspirations and goals, which is okay.  With one-on-one assistance from a professional, students will be better equipped to examine their strengths and weaknesses and determine potential study paths and career outcomes.  We offer different assessments to analyze potential areas of focus for students to pursue in higher education and as a career.     
  3. We motivate and organize students throughout the high school experience.  Navigating high school is tough.  The stress students feel with the prospect of college is heightened due to increased competition in college admissions.  College consultants are expert cheerleaders, encouraging students throughout the entire high school process.  We break down the college application into small, accessible action items that span across a student’s high school experience.  We create and model different organizational methods, share college admissions hacks, and teach students how to transition into the ever-changing landscape of college.
  4. We personalize actionable items for students to tackle.  Today’s college guidance counselors wear many hats, and it is difficult, if not impossible, to give substantial time or individual attention to your child’s college search.  Education consultants keep our caseload low to focus on each student.  Independent education consultants take students’ wants, dreams, interests, and goals and actualize them into a plan.  We keep students on track with a customized high school timeline, including an individual course map, admissions plan, and doable action items.      
  5. We empower students.  We put students in the driver’s seat and help them navigate the college process, holding their hand every step.  Being in the front seat means that students learn excellent organizational skills, explore their wants/needs, and find their authentic voice.  Therefore, as we coach on the sidelines, the college application and the college admittance results are 100% our students.  We can help get your child organized, excited, and ready for the college application season.
  6. We counsel students through highly introspective work.  College applications are highly introspective work and benefit from the guidance of a professional.  When selecting an IEC, finding someone your student will feel comfortable and safe with is important.  Good applications might offer some vulnerable insights into the student’s life, so having someone they trust is crucial for a successful outcome.

When should I hire an IEC?

Working with an IEC starting sophomore year can be advantageous to maximize the best possible outcome.  So often, I’ve witnessed students wanting to apply to a highly competitive school with good grades but missing course rigor.  Early in your child’s academic career, an IEC ensures that courses are challenging enough.  Additionally, the earlier a student works with an IEC, the more we can accomplish, like exploring potential career paths, and discovering summer internships and study opportunities.  The earlier we start, the more we learn about your kid and why they are fabulous, and the better we can recommend colleges and plan for college applications in an efficient, stress-free way.  

Many students I work with as seniors are overly stressed and have to dedicate lots of time and effort to the college application process.  They must juggle good grades, extracurriculars, jobs, and internships with the college application.  As a result, many IECs do not work with seniors due to the stress.  I do, but I only work with a few to ensure I can give my best effort and attention to each student. 

A Note to Parents

I hated my college experience.  How did this happen to someone like me, who loved learning and school?  When I was in high school looking at colleges, I did not know what to look for in colleges.  I knew I wanted an academically rigorous school with a strong biochemistry program.  I knew a small liberal arts college was the right fit for me as a participatory learner and a student.  I knew I wanted a senior thesis to stand out on graduate school applications.  But I largely left out the social aspects of going to a college.  I did not account for what it would mean to attend a school in the middle of nowhere.  I didn’t consider what kids did outside of the classroom, how kids on campus got involved, who my peers would be.  I was simply focused on academic programs and if I could continue to veterinary school.  

My dislike for college stemmed from my lack of knowledge of how to build a college list.  This is why I am a great independent education consultant because I did not have the shiny, glimmering college experience.  And because of my failure to love college, I know exactly what to look for to avoid this experience for your child.