College Bound Planning & Preparation

In the blink of an eye your child has gone from learning to tie shoes to thinking about college.   You've worked hard to prepare you student for college.  From choosing good schools to checking homework, teaching the rewards of hard work and persistence: college planning is where you bring it all together and run for the gold.

College admission is no longer based on meeting benchmarks.  With a many more qualified applicants than seats, a thorough evaluation of students takes place in the admissions office and families need additional, detailed information.  High school guidance counselors wear many hats; most students receive less than half an hour of face time to talk about college, and none at all to talk about how to pay for it.

Access consultants coach students in important aspects of college admission from investigating colleges for their application list to creating irresistible application documents to choosing among acceptances.  

Instead of spending hours of your time sorting through online tools and websites, our first hand experience on campuses gives us up to date information to pass along to clients.   Reduce your time and stress with focused planning that leads to successful application outcomes.

If you're ready to commit to a bright college future, go to the Contact Page and register for the College Admission Strategy Breakthrough Session!

Stephanie is very knowledgeable about colleges.  She found just the right fit for our son and helped him gain admission to colleges we didn't expect. ~Jim and Nancy


Early Start Planning for 8th graders, Freshmen and Sophomores

A stellar high school resume starts unfolding in the freshman year and continues through senior year. Start planning in 8th grade to help build a balanced portfolio of rich experiences that lays the groundwork for college and career success.

A simple, focused one-hour counseling session prior to 9th grade course selection enables us to consider a student’s academic strengths, interests and goals and recommend the best path. We build a flexible program so that as the student matures and new opportunities arise, changes can easily be accommodated. In addition to course selection, we discuss summer opportunities, sports, enrichment experiences and careers. 

I wish we had met you sooner! ~ Maureen

College Admission Concierge Program

This is the most effective program for students who have high goals and dreams to achieve.  Access the guidance, insight, and inspiration necessary to get you where you want to go! 

Investigate how the application process works and learn what admission representatives are looking for. You will collaboratively develop criteria for identifying colleges that meet your academic, social and financial needs; select best-fit colleges based on your interests and goals to develop a customized list.   Discover satisfying majors and careers and how to make the most of college visits.  Your coach will guide you in writing meaningful essays that enhance your application. 

This Concierge Program includes phone and e-mail collaborative consultation to create a step-by-step blueprint.

Concierge Program contents:

  • Developing criteria for colleges that fit academically, socially and financially
  • Preparation of a list of target, reach and likely admit colleges
  • Strategic plan including college testing and application timing
  • Learning how to ask for stellar recommendations
  • Tips for making the most of college visits
  • Application review
  • Brainstorming responses to prompts; review and proofreading of up to 4 essays
  • Interview practice
  • Exploring majors and career preparation
  • Financial aid overview
  • Scholarship assistance
  • Choosing among acceptances
Stephanie gave me the confidence to apply to great colleges; I'm so happy with my choices. ~ Jamie


College Advantage Program

College Advantage is designed to give students a competitive edge.   We begin by identifying what the student is looking for in a college including academic, social and financial fit, then build a list of colleges to apply to.   For students who already have a list in hand, we group choices into foundation, target and reach categories to be sure all bases are covered.  Once colleges have been determined, work on application materials begins.  Students are guided to use each section of an application to reveal new information about themselves.  Essays can change a "maybe" to a "Welcome!"  letter so particular attention is paid to responding to essay prompts, editing, proofreading.  Where required by applications, help is given to create a resume or portfolio.  Each student is shown other means to become visible to admissions officials at  their selected colleges.  From choosing application strategies to hitting the submit button, the College Advantage Program puts the student's best foot forward.

Thank you for being honest about colleges my son could get into.  You saved us time and money. ~ Janice 
My daughter wouldn't have gotten into of her top college without your help writing her essays. I'm telling my friends!~ Mary

College Prep Program:

Focused planning for strategic advantage.

Choose from a la carte options to create your own package of services at our hourly rate. Discounted bundles of 5-hours or 10-hours of assistance are also available.


A la Carte Services

 I was able to practice for the interview that (one of my colleges) set up for me.  I felt confident when I went in and when I came out.  None of the questions was a surprise. ~ Michael   

Stephanie, thank you for helping with my scholarship essays.  I'm waiting to hear but think I nailed them! ~ Chris

Scott and I thank you for your support re: gap year.   Your suggestions fell in line with our thinking and he is pursuing some of the options. ~ Sheila

College Visit Planning for Sophomores, Juniors and Seniors

This session prepares the student for making the most of college visits during the look-see phase or when you have the preliminary college list in hand.

Consultation includes detailed guidelines that cover when to visit, what to look for and a time-tested, 12-point checklist. Students are provided handy college visit evaluation forms to aid in comparing choices.

Interview Prep

An interview puts a face to an application and gives a student the opportunity to meet the admissions counselor who makes the ultimate decision. Make sure your student puts his or her best foot forward when it comes time for the all-important interview.

This interactive session gives students a chance to review and practice answering standard interview questions, as well as to tackle specific questions about their high school career.  After a mock interview, students receive valuable constructive feedback. Ideal for scholarship, internship and job interviews as well!

Effective Essay Writing    

Admissions counselors read 1000 or more application essays each year. How do you stand out from the crowd and still reflect your true self?  What about scholarship essays?

Content is as important as presentation. During collaborative sessions, we carefully consider the essay prompts and brainstorm topics to identify those that illustrate the student’s unique experiences. After the initial in-person meeting, students submit essays electronically for editing and proofreading. Students end up with polished, proofed final drafts. 


Gap Year/Post-Grad Year Planning

Some very selective colleges and universities now recommend that students take a year off between high school and college to pursue a passion or career interest. Other high school grads may need an extra year to mature socially and/or academically. Together we investigate needs and goals to find specific, well-suited gap year experiences such as community service, travel, internships or academic programs that enrich learning.

Choosing a Major, Exploring a Career   

Only 30% of college students pursue the same major from freshman year until graduation. Informal assessments and career focused discovery target areas of study and potential careers.  Emerging fields are presented.


Career Testing

It pays to pursue your passion, but what if you haven’t discovered it? Explore a variety of careers through testing designed to help you target  fields most likely to stimulate your interest and enable you to excel.

  • Formal Personality Surveys
  • Informal paper and online Inventories
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