College Admissions: How to Select and Contact your Recommenders

Posted by Danielle D. on 8/18/17 6:32 PM

In the olden days of college applications, high school seniors would haul stacks of addressed, stamped envelopes to each of their recommenders, so that those recommenders could send a different hard-copy recommendation letter to every school the student was applying to. So much work! In some ways, submitting recommendation letters for college applications has grown easier: now, you can use the Common Application to invite your recommenders to submit their letters electronically. Once you’ve added schools to the “My Colleges” section of the app, each school will have a “Recommenders and FERPA” section that lets you click a button to invite your counselors and teachers to submit recommendations on your behalf. Each of your recommenders will be emailed instructions to access their own Common Application accounts, no stamped envelopes needed.

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Tags: college admissions

Where Else Could you Go to College? Your Top Four Choices Beyond the Ivies

Posted by Danielle D. on 7/17/17 4:36 PM

When high school juniors and seniors are putting their lists of schools together for college applications, they sometimes run into a paradox: on the one hand, there are so many colleges and universities they could apply to. On the other hand, everyone seems to be talking about just eight of them—the Ivy League (or maybe a few more if they’re counting the Ivy Plus).This mindset can feel so limiting! It’s probably not a good idea to base a school list on a set of colleges that are actually only grouped together because they were made an NCAA athletic conference in the 1950s, but it can also be overwhelming to try to sort through a massive guidebook to all the US colleges. Instead, this post will highlight some other types of colleges and universities that are very worth considering—if one or two jump out as appealing to you, I’ve included tips for how you can search for more schools of this type.

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Tags: college admissions, college

How to Address Weak Areas of your College Application

Posted by Danielle D. on 6/5/17 6:44 PM

Although it may feel like you have to have the perfect application to get into college, with acceptance rates at one top-tier school dropping below five percent, there is no perfect formula for being accepted to college. Your goal instead should be to present any “problem areas”—a dip in your GPA, lower test scores than you wanted, or other high school hiccups—in the best possible light. Sometimes, this means putting your problem front and center by writing about it in your Common Application essay as an example of your ability to learn from challenges, while in other situations you might ask your counselor or recommenders to address the issue in their letters. Rather than hiding your problems and hoping for the best, you should have a proactive plan for demonstrating that you can hold yourself accountable for mistakes and learn from them in the future.

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Tags: college admissions

4 Key Tricks for Brainstorming Your College List

Posted by Danielle D. on 5/10/17 6:01 PM

If you’re a rising high school senior looking toward college application season, one of your most important first steps is putting together a list of colleges you want to apply to. This list will help you plan college visits and make a schedule of application deadlines; it’s also an important time to check in about which schools’ admissions criteria match your test scores, grades, and activities. However, with more than 3,000 four-year colleges and universities in the United States alone, the college search can be a little overwhelming, and it can be difficult to think beyond big-name schools or the colleges where all your high school classmates go. Here are four creative tricks for brainstorming outside the box when it comes to making your college list.

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Tags: college admissions

Early Decision Schools: Everything you Need to Know

Posted by Martha C. on 3/24/17 5:00 PM

Many sophomores and juniors—along with their parents—are thinking about college right now.  Though so many have whittled down a balanced list of schools, many applicants and their families have difficulty deciding when to apply.

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Tags: college admissions, college

Your College Admissions Timeline

Posted by Martha C. on 2/20/17 9:00 AM

Looking ahead to the college application process, it is imperative to have a roadmap to follow.  The most successful applicants begin to plan for their college application during the sophomore year of high school. By beginning to plan for the college admissions process early, applicants can better position themselves and significantly reduce the stress.  

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Tags: college admissions

Tips to Rock the College Admissions Interview

Posted by Corinne Carland on 10/28/16 9:30 AM

source: Randy Glasbergen

You’ve picked the college, started to submit materials, and began writing draft #239 of your personal statement. Then you get the invitation to interview. Having now been on both sides of the table, I can say that being the interviewee can be really stressful, and I sympathize with you. Here are a few tips for rocking it:

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Tags: college admissions

Ask an Expert: Do Colleges Consider Campus Visits in their Admissions Decision?

Posted by Martha C. on 10/21/16 6:34 PM

In this blog post, we ask four of our New York and Cambridge college admissions coaches a simple question. Based off of their expertise in coaching prospective applicants, four of our coaches weigh in on the discussion.

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Tags: college admissions, college

How to Use Your ACT Scores to Bucket Your College List

Posted by Danielle L. on 8/1/16 9:30 PM

Yes, you can apply to 50+ schools and every year, there are students that do. However, if you build a strong college list there is no need to exhaust yourself by applying to too many schools. I always recommend students prepare a list of nine to twelve schools. Personally, I think nine is plenty but I understand the security that comes with submitting twelve applications. When thinking of your list, it’s best to be honest with yourself and place schools into three categories; reach, match, and likely. I recommend having three schools in each category, thus nine applications, but I know that some students do prefer to have four to five match schools. Below, I shared a breakdown of how to determine if a school is a Reach, Match, or Likely based on your ACT scores (one of many factors to consider when building a list.) To construct the strongest possible list, I recommend consulting a College Coach through Cambridge Coaching or scheduling an appointment with your Guidance Counselor at school.

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Tags: college admissions

Tips on How to Spend the Summer Before College to have a Successful First Year

Posted by Sandra on 5/4/16 9:30 AM

college_summer.jpg

The transition from high school to college can bring about a complexity of emotions, from excitement to uncertainty. There will be students from a variety of different backgrounds who are all taking a big step toward independence, growth, and exploration with you. Colleges will help you with this transition by giving you information during freshman orientation, but there are steps you can take during the summer to help you make the most out of your first year. Here are some tips I wish I would have known the summer before going off to college.

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Tags: college admissions, college