Tired of racking your brain to create some ideas for a strong college application essay? At a workshop held on Thursday, June 2, 2016, students at Community High School in Ann Arbor tested out some new methods for writing a college application essay. Something unusual happened.  There were SMILES!   How did this happen?  Students […]

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College bound high schoolers:  starting to think about applying to college?  Make room on your desk next to the Common Application for a new college application from the Coalition for Access, Affordability and Success.  For over a decade, the Common Application has been the major application source for college bound students. Over 600 schools currently […]

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Dollars from college scholarships are available now

March 20, 2016. College scholarships can take some digging.  We’ve included thirty-two of them in this blog, a group worth a total of $96,000.  If you are a college applicant with more time than money, then you are a perfect candidate to explore this list of college scholarships.  Some require an essay.Each of these scholarships […]

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Barbara Corcoran in her Park Ave Apartment

The first sentence is the most valuable real estate in your entire college application essay.  The first sentence is like a Park Ave. penthouse address in Manhattan—it’s impressive and memorable. Describe the person who might live in such a place. You might imagine someone like author and Shark Tank entrepreneur Barbara Corcoran in this photo:  […]

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Thinking of either the University of Michigan or Michigan State as an option for college?  Read on.  Despite the fact that I call Ann Arbor home (and for complete disclosure, I have a BA and MSW from the University of Michigan,) I am also a fan of Michigan State as an excellent option for college.  […]

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Use this essay topic calculator to evaluate which college application essay topics will be the most impressive and compelling.  Your idea might be strong in one or more of these categories: Recent situation with longevity Relationship to others How challenging? Related to interests in college? Amount of initiative? Uniqueness Amount of detail Word pictures Results […]

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Since August 1, I have been seeing a rush of students in my office. They turn their blue or brown eyes towards me and say, ”I don’t know what to write about on my college application essay.” I reply, “No problem.” I can explain college application essays in twelve words. College application essays are about […]

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What do you think of this new Essay Coaching cartoon? The idea came from seeing so many parents (and being one of those parents) who try their hardest to launch their college bound teen into the world of college, work, and beyond. This desire to help but confusion about “What can I do?” can create […]

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The gap year is a powerful tool for fostering maturity in students applying to college.

Some people love the “gap year” idea (a year without formal schooling between high school and college).  Others say, “Nose to the grindstone! Get it done!” Fortunately for our daughter Alison, who raced through high school in three years and then needed a breather, the concept of taking a gap year before college became popular […]

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Post image for Common Application Questions and Advice 2016/2017

The Common Application has announced that the 2016-2017 personal statement essay prompts will be the same as the 2015-2016 prompts. With these questions in hand, high school juniors can now start working on their essays.  You only need to write about one of the five questions.  Which will you select?  What are you going to […]

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