Finding Your Best Fit School: Spotlight on Skidmore College

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Finding Your Best Fit School: Spotlight on Skidmore College Skidmore Dining

This week one of our new interns, Sara, shares why she chose Skidmore College in Saratoga Springs, NY. Sara will be a freshman at Skidmore this fall:

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College Acceptance Rates, Then and Now

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

College Acceptance Rates, Then and Now

undergraduate admissionsThis summer, as many rising seniors create their college list, we remind our students that there are no guarantees when it comes to college admissions. Admission at the nation’s most selective schools has become much more competitive over the past decade. To add some perspective, keep in mind that parents of today’s high school students likely applied to college 20 or more years ago.

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College Application Resume and Activity List

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Creating and Updating Your Activity List/Resume

ResumeWhen it comes to your college applications, you will likely need to submit a resume or activity list. Colleges are not admitting facts and figures, they want living, breathing human beings with likes and dislikes, passions and aversions. What Dr. Kat calls your “soft factors,” your essays, letters of recommendation, and extracurricular involvement, will tell an admissions committee what kind of person you are. From the quality and duration of your participation in certain activities, a college admissions officer will gain a more in-depth understanding of your personality and character.

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Course Planning for High School Students

Friday, April 20, 2012
Course PlanningCourse Planning for High School Students

Now that spring is in full swing, many high school students are looking forward to their summer plans (and some time away from school!). While September and the start of another school year may seem far away, most high schools require students to choose their courses for the fall before the end of the school year. Nya Marie, a high school junior from Chicago, recently blogged about choosing her senior year courses for the Huffington Post. Like Nya, many students struggle to balance the courses they want or need to take with what colleges “want” to see. Because there is nothing more important to an admissions committee than your performance in the classroom, the  expert counselors at IvyWise offer the following tips for choosing your courses:

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College Acceptance Rates, Class of 2016

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

College Admission Rates, Class of 2016

College AcceptanceCollege admission at the nation’s most selective schools has become increasingly competitive. As another admissions cycle comes to an end, many colleges are reporting another rise in applications and another decrease in acceptance rates. According to the Department of Education, there are 3.2 million graduating seniors in the US this year and the number of international students in the US has increased by more than 20% since 2007. Below is a list of colleges including the number of students who applied to each school and the percentage of students who were accepted. We will continue to update this list as more information is released in the coming weeks.

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Finding Your Best Fit School: Spotlight on Washington University

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

These Are a Few of our Favorite Things…

Washington University in St LouisThis week, one of our awesome interns shares what she loves about attending Washington University in St. Louis. Though she (and her parents) were originally considering mostly Ivy League schools, extensive research and campus visits proved that this Missouri university was her best fit school:

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Finding Your Best Fit School: Spotlight on American University

Friday, March 9, 2012

These Are a Few of Our Favorite Things…

American UniversityAt IvyWise, we love helping students discover the schools that will be a great academic and social fit for them, where they will be happy and successful. That said, when given the chance, we never hesitate to give a shout out to our own alma maters and share what made that school a great match for us. Previously, members of our team told tales of Turkey Trotting at Lehigh, classes in the Commons at Emerson, and following in the footsteps of strong women at Barnard. This week, the newest member of the IvyWise team, our Executive Assistant Ashley, tells us about her experiences at American University in Washington, DC:

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How Do I Choose Which Colleges to Apply to?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012
5 Ways to Narrow Down Your College List

College ListWith more than 4,000 colleges and universities in the US, it can be difficult to nail down exactly how many colleges you should apply to. As juniors embark on the college admissions process (and visit schools over Spring Break), now is a great time to make a preliminary college list. Here are some of the most common mistakes we see students make and some tips from Dr. Kat to help you narrow your focus.

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Summer Programs for High School Students

Friday, February 10, 2012

Planning a Productive Summer

Summer ProgramsWhen it comes to the college admissions process, it is imperative to show how you have developed your interests throughout your time in high school. College admissions committees want to see how you have made an impact in clubs and activities during the school year, but also during the summer. While it may be tempting to sit around all summer working on your tan, boards of admissions specifically look to see that you have remained productive during your time away from school. Summer presents many opportunities for students to further develop their interests and goals —travel to a foreign country, continue training in your favorite sport, make up a class or gain extra credits in summer school, start a business, get an internship, or join a community service organization.

Though summer may seem far away, the applications for many popular programs are due soon. Some of these applications can be as complex as a college application, requiring essays, letters of recommendation, and even test scores, so you will need to get started soon! Dr. Kat and the team of counselors at IvyWise, have come up with the following

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Affirmative Action in College Admissions

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Let’s Hear it For the Boys

Affirmative Action, College AdmissionsThe US Department of Education reported that for Fall 2010 admission, women, on average, accounted for 56% of applicants to four-year colleges. That same year, the New York Times stated that for every 100 American women enrolled in college, there were only 77 men. Meanwhile, the National Center for Education Statistics projects that by 2020, men will represent only 41.4% of students enrolled in college. With colleges becoming increasingly concerned about gender balance on campus, has this really led to preferential treatment for men in college admissions?

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Colleges for East Asian Studies

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Dr. Kat’s List: Colleges for East Asian Studies

East Asian StudiesHappy Chinese New Year and welcome to the Year of the Dragon! While the Year of the Rabbit was characterized by calm and tranquility, the upcoming year is expected to bring excitement and unpredictability. For students seeking an academic and social experience as exhilarating as the dragon’s personality, Dr. Kat and the expert counselors at IvyWise have identified a list of colleges with strong Asian Studies programs.

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Working with Your College Counselor

Thursday, December 8, 2011

9 Ways to Work with Your High School College Counselor

College CounselorPeople often ask us what we think about high school counselors. Our reply: We love them! Your high school guidance counselor is one of the most useful resources for college information and you should try to cultivate a relationship with your high school college counselor as early as possible in your high school experience.

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Finding Your Best Fit School: Spotlight on Barnard – Part 1

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

These Are a Few of Our Favorite Things…

Bethanie at Barnard CollegeWe’ve asked the IvyWise team to share some of their favorite things about the college they attended. Not one, but two of our team members are proud graduates of Barnard College in New York, NY. This week, our Executive Assistant, Bethanie tells us about her experiences at Barnard:

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Using Facebook in the College Admissions Process

Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Be Facebook Savvy in the College Admissions Process

FacebookIn a recent survey conducted by Kaplan Test Prep, it was revealed that nearly a quarter of college admissions officers have used Facebook or other social media or networking sites to research a college applicant. In addition, 20 percent of admissions officers admitted to “Googling” applicants. While colleges don’t spend time regularly trolling facebook and checking out your wall, if you think you’re secure because you’ve adjusted your privacy settings, you need to think again!

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2011-2012 College Admissions Essays, Part 2

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

More Quirky College Admissions Essays

College Admissions EssayWe had a strong response to our post about the unique and quirky college admissions essays that appear on many of this year’s college applications and supplements. As the college admissions landscape becomes more confusing, and more competetive, it is more important than ever for applicants to convey the best and most accurate representation of who they are, both academically and personally, to the admissions committees at their targeted schools. The admissions essay is your chance to stand out as a unique personality, to verbalize who you are in a compelling and effective manner, and to highlight your character and your achievements in your own voice. The trick, as always, is to be yourself. To kick off your brainstorming, we’ve gathered even more of this year’s most creative essay prompts:

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What do College Rankings Mean?

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Breaking Ranks

College RankingsAmong high school guidance counselors, college-bound teens and their parents, the annual college rankings are often a prevalent consideration in the college admissions process. Newsweek/The Daily Beast, U.S. News & World Report (released this week), the Princeton Review and Forbes are among the “best college” lists that students use to guide them in their college searches. What do these college rankings really mean and how much credence should be given to them when choosing a college?

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Standardized Tests – ACT vs SAT

Friday, September 9, 2011

The Best Test: ACT vs SAT

ACT, SAT, Test PrepToday is the registration deadline for the October 1st SAT, and tomorrow’s ACT marks the first standardized test of the 2011-2012 academic year. While the concept can be intimidating, standardized testing doesn’t have to be an ordeal. As of 2007, every four-year college that accepts the SAT also accepts the ACT. Determining which test is best for you (based on format, timing, and content) is an important step in ensuring testing success. At IvyWise, we recommend taking one practice SAT and one practice ACT test under realistic testing conditions, scoring both tests, and comparing initial scores. Once you determine which test is better suited to your individual abilities and begin studying, we recommend taking a practice test weekly for eight to ten weeks leading up to the actual test date.

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The Transition from High School to College

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

An IvyWise Student Talks About the Transition to College

transition to collegeI led a relatively sheltered life before leaving for college. As an only child whose parents wanted to ensure that I remained focused, I had been enrolled at an all-girls school for seven years. To their horror, I ultimately chose to attend the farthest school I applied to—Washington University in St. Louis, a shocking 16-hour drive from my home in New Jersey.

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How to Prepare for the College Transition

Tuesday, June 28, 2011
Packing for College Get Into (the) Gear:

One way to feel mentally prepared for your new adventure is to get physically prepared. First, get organized: make piles of things to bring, things to store, things to toss, and things to give away. Most schools have suggestions on their websites of things to bring, as well as those that you should leave behind. This is a great exercise to do with a parent who may be more objective about what you will and won’t need at school.

Shopping for dorm décor will help you picture where you will be living and get you excited about furnishing your own space. Decorating your dorm room according to your own taste and style will help make it feel like home, which may also ward off any home-sickness. Don’t forget the necessities, including extension cords, cleaning supplies and laundry detergent. These basic items, which were always just there before, signal the realities of independence. If you haven’t already, now is a great time to ask your parents questions, learn basic housekeeping, bookkeeping and checkbook-balancing skills, and start practicing good living habits (like keeping your room tidy!).

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