Please note that some of our clients requested that we use initials on this webpage. If you would like a more detailed endorsement, please write to debbie at essaycoaching.com. We would be happy to provide you with the names and emails of past clients who have volunteered to serve as references. Essay Coaching follows the Code of Ethics of the International Association of Coaching.
Feedback From Parents of High School Seniors:
Your sessions provided direction on essay topic selection and kept our daughter on task. I found the one-on-one sessions more helpful than a class. I would absolutely recommend Essay Coaching to others, because it is much more than help with writing essays–it is help in building skill sets for writing in college. My advice would be to encourage parents to stay to observe so they have a clear idea of what their child is learning and how you are empowering the kids to be creative and become better writers from session one through five.–L. D.Parent from class of 2013
Your sessions were exactly what we were looking for, and went beyond our expectations. What I found most helpful was the give and take. It is so impressive to see Debbie reflect so perceptively. I really appreciated Debbie’s openness in having a mom present. It was so good to know the status of the work and not feel the need to intervene at home. I would absolutely recommend Essay Coaching to others, and have already–lots! My advice to parents is to: Start Early. Hire Debbie. She makes the whole process fun and relatively painless. Debbie is a lifeline in the whole process. Debbie is a master!– B. D. Parent from class of 2013
“I don’t know how people can do this without you”—Kolby Moffatt, parent of a college-bound senior, 2012
“My advice would be to encourage parents to stay and observe, so they have a clear idea of what their child is learning, and how you are empowering the kids to be creative and better writers from session 1 to 5.” –Lynn Dworzanin, parent of a college-bound senior, 2012
“Many thanks for your “triage” work with my daughter today. You are amazing! You provided the perfect funnel of information & ideas + wisdom! KUDOS! We look forward to working with you in the future.” — February, 2012 LA Wallace, Georgia (phone and email counseling)
“I asked writing expert and essay coach, Debbie Merion, to bring her “Write Your Best College Application Essay” program to Dexter in August, 2011 to help my high school senior. My daughter, Kristen is an excellent student, but has struggled with writing. She heard about Debbie’s program and knew it could give her a vital edge in the college application process−and she was not disappointed. Debbie’s coaching helped Kristen bring enthusiasm, focus and personality to her essay. The evolution in her writing style was remarkable. Through Debbie’s program, Kristen has mastered an important skill that she can tap again and again! Debbie brings out the unique story in each student, increasing their self-confidence and opening their eyes to new perspectives. The students in Kristen’s group had a great time and emerged more motivated, excited and prepared for the college application process.”– Diane Durance, Executive Director, Great Lakes Entrepreneur’s Quest. September, 2011
“You had a unique relationship and professional attitude which is what is needed to distill a high school student’s essay into something that really highlights that student. After speaking with an admissions counselor, I believe that his essays were the component in his application that made the difference.” –J.S. September, 2008
“Just wanted to say thank you for your essay coaching help this Fall. Olivia heard from Michigan yesterday and has been accepted! I have to believe that along with her grades, your help in preparing her to write a interesting essay made someone notice.” —Kathy, December 2011.
“Last night we received heard good news from UM. I am grateful to you for your talents, your patience, your approach. Sign me up as a very satisfied customer.” –Dr. Fred Hankin, December 2011.
“The most helpful thing for me is it took me out of the picture. I had a lot of trust that the essays were getting done; I had confidence in your ability to see the process through to completion. –P.A.
Feedback From High School Students Who Were Coached Individually:
Thanks for your comments on my Northwestern essay. In response to your question about colleges, I just heard back from Stanford on Friday night and I got in! I’d like to thank you for all your help in the essay process, from generating ideas to assessing the final product. It was your help that pushed me to make my essays unique and full of “Gordon,” which is so important in college applications and all writing. Not only did you give critical feedback, but you laughed at my jokes and helped me see where my essays were strong as well. I really appreciate all the help you gave me.
I won’t be sending in any more applications since I heard back from Stanford. Thanks again for all your help and guidance!” — Gordon. December, 2012
“You really helped me come up with ideas, and stay on task weekly.” –Abigail Dworzanin. 2012
“Dear Ms. Merion,
“You helped me get what I had in my mind out onto the paper, in the way I wanted it. I’d definitely recommend you to any student who is struggling to write their essay.” — S.C. ,Duke University
“You were extremely helpful and my essays wouldn’t have been nearly as good without our meetings (that’s an understatement). You helped me write my own essays by extracting ideas from within me and guided me in their improvement, so your mission description holds true. ” – J.H.
“You helped me make my essay stand out, and give it a focus.” –A.W. , James Madison University
“I liked how you taught to my style. Each time we worked we made a lot of progress on each essay. The free-write was helpful to get my ideas out there and warm up my ideas.” –P.S., University of Michigan
Feedback from Grad School Applicants (including MBA, MS in Journalism, Law School, Engineering School)
I got into Columbia!!! Can you believe it? It’s absolutely my No.1 choice and my dream school. I’m so so excited. I guess I don’t have to worry about other schools any more. I’ll graduate with my M.S. in Journalism.
I think talking to you over Skype or phone and discussing my essays together really helped me a lot. I could understand why changes were needed and how to make them. I believe I learned a lot in this way. I would recommend you to others. Thanks so much for all your help. Please keep in touch.” –X. B. ,Columbia School of Journalism. March 20, 2011.
“To Whom It May Concern,
Writing has always been a difficult and painful process for me. When I decided to go to school for my M.B.A., the thought of developing personal essays during the application process almost prevented me from returning to school at all! Thankfully, I met Deb Merion. Deb helped me believe that what I had to say was valid and interesting. She also taught me that I could write it in a way which both inspired the reader’s confidence in me and gave an accurate insight into who I was and where I was going.
What surprised me most about working with Deb was her gift in understanding subjects which were unfamiliar to her. She asked wonderful, thought-provoking questions and had the ability to identify where my success factors were in those complex situations. She did not write for me; however, she was able to clear the muddy thought process which prevented me from communicating intelligently. She validated my thoughts, praised my progress, and worked diligently with me through approaching aggressive deadlines.
I liked working with Deb because she genuinely cared about my goals and adopted them as her own. When I told her I had been accepted to the University of Michigan’s Business School, it was as if we had been accepted, not just me. Now, when I write I feel more confident and capable concerning my skills and am able to believe more in myself. I highly recommend Deb to anyone who is looking for guidance in the writing process, for they can be assured that their final product will be regarded as a premium form of communication.”
G.B. CPA March, 2005
–Nick, Aspiring MBA candidate. Admitted March, 2013
Feedback for “Write and Edit a Winning College Application Essay” and “Writing a Winning College Application Essay” Ann Arbor Rec and Ed Class – 2013
Very helpful class! Excellent information, presented in a way easy to understand. Good discussion. Keep up the good work! Amy Meltzer
One thing I really liked about this class was that both sessions really helped me get started and have ideas for essays. One change I would suggest for this class is it should be advertised. It was worth it.
I loved this class. I learned so much and I’m glad I took it. One thing I really liked about this class was the one-on-one with the teacher, and the 10 min free writes. I would recommend it to anyone who wants to have a winning college essay.
One thing I really liked about this class was it gave me a lot of good ideas to start, now I don’t feel so lost.
I gained some really useful, quick tools to get me started in thinking about writing these kinds of essays. Very chill and positive instructor, I really felt that I learned all I could in a couple of 2-hour sessions.
Excellent, useful class for people starting the college application process.
Enjoyable and informative class.
Debbie is very knowledgable and experienced. I feel much more comfortable about the upcoming application season.
Feedback for “Write Locally, Get Published Globally” Ann Arbor Rec and Ed Class – 2012
One thing I really liked about this class was the resources provided and information about the UM printer for books.
One thing I really liked about this class was her great enthusiasm for writing/publishing.
I enjoyed it. I was impressed with how much knowledge the instructor had.
Great presenter, very informed about subject. I really enjoyed the class.
One thing I really liked about this class was Debbie—very personable, good pacing, knowledgeable.
Feedback from Educators:
““Debbie connected with our students and teachers immediately. She inspired the students to write an essay that communicated their passion. After her lecture, Debbie facilitated a group of writing mentors who provided one-to-one feedback to seniors engaged in college essay writing. It was an awesome experience for both students and adults. I highly recommend Debbie.” –Joanne Hopper, Director of Education Services, St. Clare County RESA
Essay Coaching students have been accepted to:
- American University
- Brown University
- Columbia University
- Cornell University
- Dennison University
- Duke University
- Emory University (Honors Program)
- James Madison University
- Harvard University
- Indiana University
- Lake Forest College
- Michigan State University (Honors Program)
- Northeastern University
- Northwestern University
- Oberlin College
- University of Chicago
- University of Georgia (Honors Program)
- University of Michigan
- University of Michigan (Honors Program)
- Washington University in St. Louis
- Wisconsin University
- Wittenburg University–This student received a acceptance letter from the Director of Admissions, complimenting her on her essay and offering her a $60,000 academic scholarship.
- Yale University