Tag Archives: College search

Too Late to Change Fall Plans?

It’s late July and all your friends are busy prepping for their first semester at college, while you are still trying to find a job or working in a job you know you don’t want to spend years at. You are beginning to regret not applying to college and are wondering if it is too late.

If this is your situation, know that you still have options for attending college in the fall.

First be aware that many colleges public and private, have Rolling Admissions. Rolling Admissions means that the institution accepts applications generally through the first two weeks of the semester. However, if you are looking for on-campus housing, acceptance in to a highly competitive program, or need significant financial aid, you will probably be out of luck.

That being said, you should talk to an admission counselor, financial aid counselor, or your private college planner as soon as possible.

Here are some tips to help you get into college this fall.

Apply as soon as possible for admissions and financial aid. The sooner you complete the application process, the sooner they can review and accept your application.

Find out if you need SAT or ACT scores. You may not need either if applying to a community college.

If you can’t decide on a major, consider General Studies or Liberal Arts. This particularly true if you need financial aid, as you must be enrolled in a degree or certificate program to be eligible for financial aid.

If you can’t afford to attend full time, take a course or two (whatever you can afford). Then you can take your time and work with a college planner to outline a plan to start fulltime in the Spring term or the next academic year.

Even taking a course or two at a local two year or four state college, can be used to your advantage when applying to college or university you want to attend full time. It shows you are: 1) capable of college level work and 2) you can manage your time effectively, especially if you are balancing work and school.

So take heart, you still have options if you want to start college this fall. Now get moving!! And good luck.

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Should You Hire a College Planner??

A recent article in in USAToday (Is Private College Counseling the Key  to Getting Into a Top  School), reported that 26% of college applicants hired a college counselor in 2013. That was up substantially from 2003— three times greater. When  looking into private college counselors, consider the following points.

1. What are your needs? Do you need College search assistance, application process guidance,  admissions interview coaching, essay writing counseling, test prep or financial aid application process guidance? Know what you need and make sure  that counselor you work with doesn’t try to talk you into more than you  are looking for. Larger college counseling companies have structured programs, so you may not get the personal counseling you need.

2. Ask for the background and  experience level of the counselor. There is no license for college planners, so you really need to ask questions about the counselor’s qualifications. Many people enter this field without related or strong backgrounds in college admissions or financial aid. Frequently financial planners offer this as a service as a lead in to their financial planning services.

3. Does the counselor have set counseling programs or does he/she offer an hourly fee?

4. Make sure your personalities are compatible and that you feel comfortable working with the counselor.  You must  feel free to express you needs and concerns, as well as your strengths and weaknesses.

As a college planner who has over 20 years of experience as a college admissions and financial aid administrator, I am more than happy to answer these questions for my prospective clients!