(Parts 1 & 2)

Shanghai, China — April 2012

IF THERE'S A PART OF YOUNG PEOPLE'S LIVES THAT'S MORE COMPLEX THAN TODAY'S COMPETITIVE ADMISSIONS LANDSCAPE, I'd be hard-pressed to name it. From the endless fixation on more (AP's, extracurriculars, volunteer work).... to plummeting acceptance rates.... to rampant urban legends ("I heard some guy got into all the Ivies last year with a 3.7, so I will, too!").... let's be honest: it's just overwhelming.

I'LL NEVER SAY A PRESTIGE COLLEGE ON YOUR CHILD'S RESUME DOESN'T MATTER.  I will, however, argue that name brand should dictate your choices less than many applicants believe. 

PEOPLE OFTEN ASSUME GRAD SCHOOL APPS ARE MORE STRAIGHTFORWARD.    But after years of guiding clients toward medical, law, business, academic masters, and PhD programs, I have to say: they actually demand more  thoughtfulness, acuity, and attention to detail. 

IN THE FACE OF SUCH PRESSURE, IT'S NO SURPRISE THAT PEOPLE CAN FREAK OUTBut freaked out is not where you want to be when you're navigating crucial life decisions....

Imagine.... instead of obsessing over reputation....

If we chose a list of campuses that are ambitious, realistic, and tailored to your child's specific individual needs?

If we weighed the risks your child does take very, very carefully?

If we could maximize acceptance chances at your child's best-fit schools through careful collaboration and vivid, compelling personal writing?

And: if we could do it all in a way that's positive, and nurturing of your child's confidence and well-being?

I love working with....

Applicants and families seeking a dynamic, growth-oriented, healthy process.

I coach clients through....

Close, patient dialogue and exploration as the foundation for personal discovery and self-knowledge. 

The application essays become....

An invitation to explore passion and personal maturity — to make a powerful statement about the kind of student and citizen your child will be, and his/her potential for meaningful contribution to the larger world beyond.

It's best to begin the process....

As soon as you and your child feel ready. I'm a particular fan of the unique opportunities a slow ramp-up through 10th or 11th grade allows us, including important time and space to fine-tune the student's foundation across many levels:  

>> School list selection in anticipation of spring break campus visits junior year

>> Class selection guidance year by year

>> Active support for application to summer programs (including the luxury of laying the creative skills base for personal statement writing in less high-risk circumstances)

>> Targeted, personalized extracurriculars and community service (as opposed to a more typical generic approach)

>> Independent academic / creative / volunteer projects

>> Guidance in building relationships with teachers for more effective mentoring (as well as the best letters of recommendation)

From the moment I met Kevin, there was an immediate connection that can be best described as a mentor relationship. His goal was not to get me into the best college to please my parents or boost his reputation, but to help me find a school I would gladly come to call home. Every week we had long conversations about a vast range of topics from religion to even relationships. In these conversations, Kevin was instrumental in coaxing my experiences and passions first into words, and then into coherent and artful essays. I had the security of working with someone who was talented in the field of writing, and who also had a genuine respect for my emotions and life experiences. Kevin was not only an integral part of getting me into the majority of the schools I applied to. He made sure to bring me back to his office to sort through my acceptances in search of the college that best matched me personally and academically. I cannot thank him enough for the effort he put into molding me into the motivated and very happy college student I am today.      — Esther J., Williams College


Creativity  ~  Vividness  ~  Sanity

>> CONTACT ME to learn more about what we can create together.