The IvyWise College Counseling Experience

Want to get into your dream university? At IvyWise, our team of former admissions officers knows what it takes to stand out when applying to college. 

What Makes IvyWise College Counseling Unique?

Unrivaled Direct Admissions Experience

All of our college counselors are former Deans and Directors of admissions at top colleges and universities with at least three years of direct admissions experience. They have read applications, sat in committee, and made the critical admissions decisions that shaped well-rounded classes at the country’s top universities.

Wide Range of Services

The admissions process is holistic, and so is our approach to working with students. We don’t just advise on how to fill out the Common App – although we are the best at it! We work with students to determine the best combination of college counseling, tutoring and test prep, and research services to maximize outcomes and help them reach their academic and admissions goals.

Mock Admissions Committee Feedback

Our unique team-based approach to college counseling allows students to benefit from the expertise of the entire team of 27 counselors – all former Deans and Directors of admission – through the IvyWise Roundtable in addition to personalized, one-on-one guidance from their dedicated IvyWise counselor. This level of expertise and team-based feedback is something no one else offers.

Concierge Client Relations Support

You’re never alone! In addition to individualized attention from your expert IvyWise counselor, families are also supported through the entire IvyWise experience by a dedicated Client Relations Manager, who helps to ensure that students are on track and that families are getting the most out of their IvyWise programs.

How Does IvyWise College Counseling Work?

Colleges consider all four years of high school grades, courses, activities, summer plans, and awards when reviewing applicants, so it’s important to start the college preparation process as early as possible. At IvyWise, our programs are tailored to fit each student, no matter what stage of the college admission process they are in. Comprehensive programs can start as early as 8th grade or much later in the process when seniors have just started on their applications. We’re here to help guide students through the entire process – or the specific areas where they need the most support.

Comprehensive College Admissions Counseling Programs

Students in long-term IvyWise college counseling programs work with their counselor to build compelling profiles by maximizing their time in high school in order to be best prepared for the college admissions process. As senior year approaches, students receive comprehensive application support – ensuring they’re putting together the most compelling applications that will give them the best chance of admission to their top-choice schools.

College Counseling in 8th Grade

Profile Building: Colleges evaluate all four years of high school grades, courses, activities, summer plans, and more, so starting early is critical to a successful and stress-free college admissions process. In this stage of the program, sessions are impactful and introspective as IvyWise counselors get to know students and help them build a strong foundation early, allowing them to take advantage of all opportunities available to them with expert guidance through every step of the way. This includes working with students in 8th grade to help them choose 9th grade courses – setting their academic track through all four years of high school.

College Counseling in 9th and 10th Grade

Crafting Your “Story:” Who are you today and who do you want to be in the future? As students enter 9th and 10th grade, IvyWise counselors continue to work with them to explore and refine their academic and extracurricular activities, helping them continue to build their profile authentically and better define their “story.” Colleges want to build well-rounded classes of students with clear interests and goals, so our counselors guide students to participate in purposeful and relevant activities that are true to their interests and who they are. It’s our goal to help students grow into the best versions of themselves and tell their own story – not the story someone else thinks admissions officers want.

College Counseling in 11th Grade

Executing Your College Prep: Most high schools don’t start college prep until the second half of 11th grade. At IvyWise, we have been building a solid profile since 9th grade, so by the start of junior year students are ready to dive into the bulk of the college prep process. At this point, sessions are more frequent with more deliverables as IvyWise counselors leverage our tutoring and research services to help students to build a balanced college list, refine and execute a relevant testing strategy, plan for college visits, and more. Everything students have been doing over the last 2-3 years is starting to be realized as they work toward the application process senior year.

College Counseling in 12th Grade

Telling Your Story: IvyWise counselors work directly with students to tell the story they’ve been building over the last four years through compelling and thoughtful college applications. This starts with developing and executing a strategic application plan to maximize outcomes. Students work exclusively with their IvyWise counselor for every part of the application process, including brainstorming, drafting, editing, and refining the personal statement essay along with any supplements. Sessions are weekly, or even daily, as we work with students to tell their story through every application and submit them to IvyWise Roundtable, which helps students hone their applications before submitting. 

Short-Term Programs for College Admissions

Looking for expert feedback in a fast-tracked, targeted program? IvyWise offers short-term senior programs that give families access to expert college application advice to help students prepare their applications, or even offer guidance after their applications are done. While these programs don’t include access to the IvyWise Roundtable, students still benefit from personalized guidance from a member of our team of admissions experts.

Application Boot Camp: Assistance with Your College Application

The IvyWise Application Boot Camp is ideal for students who are coming to us later in the process and want to tap into IvyWise’s counseling services in a focused, fast-tracked, and affordable program. Seniors will work with an IvyWise counselor on all aspects of the Common Application, including personal and activity statements, as well as the supplement for a top-choice school.

Application Review

You’ve already completed your Common Application and the supplement to your top-choice school, but are you sure it’s ready for submission? Get your application read by a former admissions officer before it really counts! An IvyWise counselor will provide comprehensive evaluation of all application aspects and make suggestions for improvement.

Portfolio Review

Are you submitting a portfolio with your college applications? The IvyWise Portfolio Review gives students a thorough, expert review of all elements of their completed portfolio and, if required, an artist’s statement by a former admissions officer and artist who reviewed applications and portfolios for both undergraduate and graduate-level art programs.

Deferral and Waitlist Consultations

You’ve already completed the admissions process and the results are in – but they’re not what you expected. IvyWise counselors provide expert insight into what comes next. They will review all of the student’s application materials and provide a strategic plan to help maximize the chances of admission.

Development Consultation

Enhancing philanthropic giving is important to all colleges and universities, and can play a unique part in the college admissions process in some circumstances. At IvyWise, we provide development and philanthropic counseling with a former Ivy League development and admissions officer with over 20 years of experience. Your counselor will explain the development process from the point of view of a highly selective university and discuss development priorities and methods for pledging or making a major gift.

IvyWise Results Speak for Themselves

91% of IvyWise students gained admission into one or more of their three, top-choice schools. Our proven methodology ensures that students get into their best-fit colleges.

IvyWise students are 4x more likely to gain admission to top colleges in the US and abroad.

See the proof in our results.

Rated #1 best college consultant by TopCollegeAdmissionsConsultants.com

We are the best of the best but don’t just take it from us! See what others have said about IvyWise.

5-Year Average Acceptance Rates

IvyWise Student Acceptances

IvyWise College Counseling Team

IvyWise college counselors are here to guide students every step of the way. Our college counselors are all former Deans and Directors of admissions from top colleges and each has at least three years of direct admissions experience. They have read and evaluated tens of thousands of applications and know what it takes to stand out when applying to college. Meet a few of our college counselors:

Nat

Nat is a former Senior Assistant Director of Admissions at NYU and NYU Abu Dhabi

Expert tip: “Choose the activities that you really genuinely enjoy and choose the schools that will really appreciate and respect the choices that you have made.”

Kim

Kim is a former Associate Director of Admissions at the University of Pennsylvania

Expert tip: “I think that “understanding your why” is extremely important in this process. My advice to students is to be open-minded and to ask yourself tons of questions.”

Cara

Cara is a former Assistant Dean of Admissions at Colgate University

Expert tip: “Sometimes, the college process feels like climbing a mountain. But if you pick your milestones, break it down into smaller pieces, and remember to have some fun along the way, you will make it to the top.”

Rod

Rod is a former Associate Director of Admissions at Case Western Reserve University

Expert tip: “If you plan ahead, set realistic expectations, accept that there are no guarantees, and have an open mind about the process, the journey to finding your best-fit college will be fun.”

Counselor Specialties

In addition to direct admissions experience, IvyWise counselors have specialties in a number of specific areas that can give an added layer of support for students with unique guidance needs. Some common specialties include:

  • Athletics: IvyWise has counselors who can guide families through the intricacies that student athletes may face if they plan to compete inter-collegiately in NCAA Division I, II or III.
  • Visual and Performing Arts: For students applying to arts or music programs, an IvyWise counselor can help them showcase their talents in a creative and engaging way and can provide feedback on portfolios (such as art work, recordings, written pieces, etc.), while explaining how these supplements fit into the larger application picture.
  • Learning Differences: Our counselors have experience advising students with learning differences, whether families are seeking specialty high schools and colleges with LD support or wanting to address learning differences in an application. We work hand-in-hand with families to give students the confidence and tools to achieve their goals. Our counselors are trained in reading and understanding psych-ed evaluations and IEPs and how they impact students in and out of the classroom.

For a full list of counselor specialties and areas of expertise, check out our team page.

Parent and Student Testimonials

Get Started with the Initial Consultation

The IvyWise Initial Consultation is the first step on the path to a successful academic experience and application process. Following a thorough review of your student’s profile, you’ll meet with the IvyWise expert counselor of your choice for 90 minutes to go over a personalized, strategic action plan to help your student achieve their academic and personal goals. This consultation also allows your counselor to make the best recommendation for ongoing work to fit your student’s needs. To learn more and enroll in an Initial Consultation, call us today at +1-212-262-3500.

Learn more about the IvyWise Initial Consultation »

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