What exactly does college planning entail?
Students who seek to attend college must prepare for a multitude of standardized tests, research and visit schools to determine the “safeties”, “reaches”, and “good fits”, complete a variety of applications and essays, and gather recommendations from teachers, counselors, and mentors. The process can be daunting, but we are here to help with any or all facets of college planning for your student, from college search to application submission.
So when does college planning actually begin?
For most students, it starts the summer prior to Junior year when they begin standardized test prep before taking the PSAT in the Fall. This test score is important for several reasons. First, it counts for qualification as a National Merit Scholar. Second, it serves as a baseline for SAT and other standardized test preparation. Third, it becomes the first piece of information colleges and universities use to begin recruiting students.
After completing the PSAT in the fall, students continue standardized test instruction throughout the school year in preparation for the SATs and/or ACTs. The exact test prep schedule for each student varies and depends on a variety of factors, such as preferred tests, exam dates, desired scores, and extracurricular and school schedules. Our team works with students to develop a custom test prep schedule that accounts for these variables.
College Application and Essay Support
During the summer before Senior year, we work with students to derive a list of schools that match their interests and abilities. This is a multi-step process that pays careful attention to students’ learning styles and career goals, while considering likelihood of acceptance. Students concurrently complete any college planning materials assigned by their high schools.
Once students, along with their parents and tutor, determine a final list of schools, they begin the college application and college essay writing process. We help students stay on top of deadlines and help them create an essay that reflects the desired traits that college admission board committees seek.
Rising Juniors and Seniors are invited on our college tours which take place during breaks from school in the winter, spring, and summer. The tour of Virginia, Maryland and DC colleges and universities gives students a foundation from which to build their list of preferences when deciding on the right school. A one time fee covers the cost of transportation, room and board, and meals.