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Why Your Extracurriculars May Not Help You Get Into College

We’ve all heard horror stories about brilliant kids—straight As, perfect test scores—who were rejected from nearly every school on their college list. I recently started working on transfer applications with a student who’d been waitlisted, and then rejected at a number of top-20 universities, including Harvard and Yale. She’d only

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College Planning Timeline for High School Students

For tens, maybe hundreds of thousands of seniors applying to college this year, the admissions process will be one of the most grueling and stressful experiences they’ve had in their lives. If you’re a student or a parent of a student who’s just starting high school, however, we’ve got good

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How Starting a Blog Might Get You Into College

How do you make an admissions officer believe you? This, in my opinion, is the central challenge of college applications. You probably believe you’re smart enough, hard-working enough, and talented enough to get into the schools you’re applying to, and your job is to convince the application reader that you

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How to Pick Colleges to Apply to Without Visiting

One of the first and most often overlooked steps in applying to college is deciding where to apply. As a high school student, especially at a public high school but at private ones as well, you rarely receive any helpful information about what differentiates colleges. For example, my parents worked

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How to Stay on Track for College Applications during COVID-19

Colleges internationally have shut down their campuses and in-person research operations in response to the COVID-19 crisis, but the application cycles for most remain unaffected. Meanwhile, many high school students are stuck at home. While admissions officers will take into consideration the difficulties faced by students during this period, this

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How to Gain Leadership Experience this Summer

As high school students head into winter break, summer vacation is probably the furthest thing from their minds. And that is just fine. Winter break is a good time for students to live in the moment a little, and relax and recharge. But once they’ve had a chance to catch

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