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SAT and ACT scores may be optional in college applications this year, but many top schools still rely on them

March 26, 2021

Pierre Huguet, CEO and co-founder of H&C Education, a Boston-based educational consulting firm, told me that “admissions officers relied pretty heavily on the SAT or ACT to evaluate the academic profile of a student. They were already looking at the academic results, the extracurricular profile, the letters of recommendation, but now they have to find ways to quantify some of these soft skills, and mostly the extracurricular profiles. So, it takes a lot of time. Now on top of that, they received lots of applications.”

College majors with the highest and lowest unemployment rates

October 21, 2020

Pierre Huguet, CEO of admissions consulting firm H&C Education, described political science as “one of the most versatile degrees in terms of job opportunities.” This is because political science majors cultivate analytical and rhetorical skills that can translate to essentially any industry. However, students of this discipline tend to work in political and legal environments, and often find jobs as diplomats, lobbyists, political consultants, and lawyers.

It’s Not Too Late To Have Meaningful Gap Year

October 9, 2020

Pierre Huguet of H&C Education, an educational consultancy, says now is a great time for students to help their communities, join activist groups, or create their own groups, all while building their resumes with meaningful experiences.

What Happens If Your College Campus Closes Again This Fall?

September 1, 2020

If you are worried about college campus closings and having to make last minute accommodations, you shouldn’t wait and see what happens. According to Pierre Huguet of H&C Education Consulting, a college consultancy firm, the absolute best step you can take is to start planning now. 


“Do not wait until school officials announce they’re closing dorms or won’t be delivering food to your dorm,” he says. Students and families should come up with a concrete plan that would fit their finances and be logistically realistic in the event of a last-minute closure. This includes lining up access to food and lodging so they can adapt to online learning as smoothly as possible if campuses and dorms close.

Grad School During a Recession: Is It Worth It?

July 14, 2020

"Students who are passionate about research and want to go to graduate school should be aware that it will be very complicated for students with non-professional degrees to find research or tenure-track positions in the next two years, at the very least," said Pierre Huguet, CEO of educational consulting agency H&C Education.

But a professional degree like a JD, MD or MBA will still make you more marketable, recession or not.


"While a professional degree isn't a magic formula when it comes to finding employment, it can certainly help students, provided that they've spent enough time building their resumes by pursuing impactful activities during their education," Huguet said.

What the GRE Test Is and How to Prepare

August 6, 2020

Ian Curtis, co-founder and former director of academic development at H&C Education admissions consulting firm, notes that grad program admissions officers often care more about GRE section scores than overall GRE scores.

"Ph.D. programs are generally interested in highly specialized applicants, so a low math score, for example, won't necessarily hurt your chances of acceptance to great humanities and social sciences programs," Curtis wrote in an email. "I recently worked with a student who was accepted to a top history Ph.D. program with a math score in the 40th percentile. He had numerous publications and extensive teaching experience, the benefits of which far outweighed his poor performance in math."

What Is Graduate School and Should You Apply?

February 15, 2019

"Graduate school can mean many things," wrote Pierre Huguet, who is [...] the CEO and co-founder of the H&C Education admissions consulting firm. "There's a big difference between starting an M.S. or M.A. program, going to law or business school and embarking on the five- to seven-year journey that is a Ph.D."

Dilemma behind opting for Ivy League schools in COVID-19 times

July 7, 2020

In an interview with Forbes, Pierre Huguet, CEO of H&C Education, said that online education is often far from the experience students hoped for and paid for, and this is true no matter how hard schools try to alter their programs. With that in mind, he expects some schools to adjust their pricing for the coming school year.

How to get a student loan for community college

June 26, 2020

As Pierre Huguet, CEO and co-founder at H&C Education, an educational consulting agency in the New York City area, puts it: “Distance learning is definitely not the ultimate college experience. Many of my students keep telling me, ‘This isn't what I signed up for!’ and they’re right. Remote learning just isn't as exciting or fulfilling as a campus experience that allows students to interact with peers and faculty.”

He also says, since the process behind remote learning is largely the same, no matter which institution you choose to attend, many of the families  he works with are balking at the idea of paying full tuition.

The Class of 2021 Could Change College Admissions Forever

June 19, 2020

Colleges claim to value a student’s character in the admissions process. “It’s not enough just to be smart at top schools,” says Angela Dunnham, former assistant director of admissions at Dartmouth College. “Students must also show that they’ll be good classmates and community builders.” If this were truly the case, then an applicant’s essay and extracurriculars would hold equal or more weight than a test score or G.P.A. After all, there’s nothing about a multiple choice test that showcases a student’s creativity or versatility.

Top Undergrad Majors at the Best Medical Schools

June 16, 2020

Pierre Huguet, CEO and co-founder of the H&C Education consulting firm, encourages premeds to explore their nonmedical academic interests and discover connections between those interests and the medical profession.

"The possibilities are endless, and they range from sociology and anthropology, to art and the humanities, and even to sports and video games," Huguet wrote in an email, adding that med school hopefuls with a nonmedical "passion" can distinguish themselves. "Most applicants tend to look the same, so finding some unconventional interests is always a great way to stand out in the admissions process."

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Tips For Taking The At-Home GRE

June 14, 2020

Pierre Huguet, CEO and co-founder of the college consulting firm H&C Education, says students should read the fine print on the checklist and pay close attention to details such as the requirement that asks students to provide a 360-degree camera view of the room and desk prior to taking the exam.


“This means that if you work at a desktop computer with a built-in camera, you probably won’t be able to show a 360-degree view of the room without either breaking your back or unplugging your computer,” Huguet tells Business Insider.

America Disrupted: Colleges face cash crunch

June 12, 2020

Yahoo Finance’s Alexis Christoforous, Brian Sozzi, and Akiko Fujita discuss what the college education landscape will look like due to the coronavirus pandemic, and speak with H&C Education CEO Pierre Huguet about how students are reconsidering their enrollment.

As Harvard Goes Online, Will Students Pay Top Dollar For Higher Education?

June 8, 2020

Pierre Huguet, CEO of H&C Education, says that online education is often far from the experience students hoped for and paid for, and this is true no matter how hard schools try to alter their programs. [...]

Elite colleges with huge endowments, such as those in the Ivy League, aren’t impacted by the economic crisis in the same way as most colleges, says Huguet. A majority of top-tier colleges, and especially Ivy League schools, are already need-blind as well, which means that applicants are judged solely on their merits irrespective of their ability to pay for tuition. 

“These schools meet 100 percent of the financial need demonstrated by their students,” he said. “They do not rely on tuition the same way most colleges do.”

This article also appeared in:

Impact Of Coronavirus (COVID-19) On College Tuition And Finances

June 3, 2020

“At the moment, much remains uncertain, but unless a vaccine becomes available in the near future, I would bet that a lot of colleges will remain closed until 2021 and try to move all of their classes online,” said Pierre Huguet, CEO of H&C Education. “The main issue with this scenario is that online courses aren’t as appealing to students as living on campus. So, if this happens, and even if moving instruction online is an expensive process, colleges will have to find real financial incentives to make sure that enough students enroll in the fall.”

What you need to know to prepare for and excel at the online GRE, according to testing experts and instructors

May 5, 2020

Pierre Huguet, CEO and cofounder of college consulting firm H&C Education, explained that a good way to get ready for this is the online practice tests.


"While we're all living in a very stressful time, a quarantine is also a great moment to start working on a research paper, for instance, and show admissions officers that you've been proactive during your quarantine," Huguet said. "Impactful experiences in your field are much more important than your GRE score alone."

What COVID-19 Means for Graduating College Seniors and Incoming Freshmen

May 1, 2020

"The job market for the class of 2020 looks bleak. The U.S. is facing a possible recession. People are losing their jobs, and no one seems to be hiring right now," explains Pierre Huguet, CEO and co-founder of college consulting firm H&C Education. "Graduating college seniors should expect to spend the next three to six months without any real job or internship opportunities." [...]

Even though times are tough, especially for those making big life transitions, there's still a way to make the most out of this complicated time. "Now is a great time for students to help their communities and build their resumes with meaningful real-world work experiences," says Huguet.

With Decision Day Looming, High School Seniors Face Uncertainty In Their College Choices

March 23, 2020

Pierre Huguet, CEO and co-founder of college consulting firm H&C Education, says that every school’s financial aid offer is different, so you have to spend some time deciphering their offers.

“This means that you need to figure out which parts of your financial aid package are grants or scholarships, and which sections are either work-study, or federal, state, or private loans,” he says. “Pay careful attention to all the details in your financial aid offer—what looks like a generous offer can be a loan in disguise.”

32 Free Online Courses from the Best Colleges and Universities

May 10, 2019

Can one math class make a difference in your academic standing? Curtis sure thinks so, and he has the story to prove it! “I worked with a student who took an online math class over the summer,” he explains to “The student could have paid for a certificate, but I told him to save his money. As an added bonus, the student was able to skip ahead a whole year in his high school math curriculum. These achievements count a great deal in the college application process.” Not bad for a single free class!

College admission essay tips from recruitment specialists

December 18, 2020

Ian Curtis, co-founder and the Director of Writing and Academic Development at H&C Education, added, “Aim for an uncommon and intriguing first line.  Avoid beginning an essay by introducing yourself, for example, since your reader already knows what your name is.” He also warns against making broad claims and instead, using concrete examples.

He reminds students that the essay is not an academic paper and doesn’t need to follow the traditional structure, either.

Test-Optional Colleges: What’s The Catch?

October 24, 2018

College admissions tests—and the SAT in particular—have been under scrutiny for many years.  Most people who work in higher education have stories about students accepted with relatively-low SAT or ACT scores achieving near-perfect GPAs in college (and, on the other hand, kids with outstanding test results being just average in their college classes).  

College Planning Timeline for High School Students

January 2, 2020

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 news: you can avoid nearly all of the stress of the application process by planning for success early on.

College Consultants Should Do More than Condemn William “Rick” Singer

April 18, 2019

College consultants are not the only ones who need to do better. Public schools (even certain private schools) need more funding for college counseling services. We repeatedly hear the same story from our clients: their child’s counselor is extremely overworked. In 2015–16, a single public school counselor was responsible for 470 students. When we founded our company in the fall of 2018, the New Haven Board of Education had recently cut the number of college counselors in our city by a third.

How To Get Into Top Colleges: Create Your Student Brand

February 15, 2019

With such low acceptance rates at top colleges, families are looking for new ways to beat the odds and stand out in the college admissions process. Creating a student brand will help you hone your talents and passions, and communicate your unique value to admissions officers.

What Can You Do With a Political Science Degree?

April 22, 2019

Pierre Huguet, the CEO of the H&C Education admissions consulting firm and a Ph.D. candidate at Yale University who took multiple college courses in political science and government as an undergraduate at the University of Montreal, says a degree in political science can be used to obtain a variety of types of jobs.

This article also appeared in:

What the GRE Test Is and How to Prepare

February 15, 2019

"Ph.D. programs are generally interested in highly specialized applicants, so a low math score, for example, won't necessarily hurt your chances of acceptance to great humanities and social sciences programs," Curtis wrote in an email. "I recently worked with a student who was accepted to a top history Ph.D. program with a math score in the 40th percentile. He had numerous publications and extensive teaching experience, the benefits of which far outweighed his poor performance in math."

How Long Does It Take to Get a Ph.D. Degree?

August 12, 2019

Ian Curtis, a founding partner with H&C Education, an educational and admissions consulting firm [..] says there are several steps involved in the process of obtaining a Ph.D. Students typically need to fulfill course requirements and pass comprehensive exams [...].

Pierre Huguet, the CEO and co-founder of H&C Education, says prospective Ph.D. students should be aware that a Ph.D. is designed to prepare a person for a career as a scholar. 

Preparing for College Starts Freshman Year of High School

July 14, 2019

Ian Curtis, independent college consultant and co-founder of H&C Education, encourages students to figure out the subjects they most enjoy and dig deep in those areas. “Use a part of your summer vacations in high school to enroll in academic programs that will help you build your knowledge and experience in a given subject,” he says.

Last-Minute Strategies For Ivy League Applications

December 17, 2018

The college essay is a chance for admissions officers to get to know a student.  The essay should tell an applicant’s own unique story. A student should be confident, before submitting his or her essay, that only he or she could have written the piece.  Style is not hugely important, but the content should paint a vivid picture of the applicant’s personality.

What wealthy parents do to get their kids into elite colleges (legally)

March 13, 2019

Huguet hopes this scandal will draw a clearer line between what is acceptable and what is not in the admissions process. "Some parents think they can buy their child a place into top schools," he says. "We have had clients who want us to write the college essays. Who want us to place them. That's not what we do."

This article also appeared in:

How to Take a Staycation This Summer

June 10, 2019

Between running a start-up company and wrapping up his graduate degree, Pierre Huguet is too busy to take a vacation this summer. “I don’t have much time to travel around, so I’ve decided to stay home,” he says.

This article also appeared in:

The Ultimate Summer Guide for Rising Seniors

May 3, 2019

"Remember that the college application process doesn’t have to be stressful. Plan ahead, make sure to stay organized, read some great books, and take time to relax and spend time with your family and friends. Keep these tips in mind, and start thinking about admissions now. This will give you plenty of time to ensure that you’re presenting yourself to colleges in your very best light. 

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