Targeting the right colleges based on goals and high school subject selection

– Rishika, Santa Clara University

Rishika understood the importance of finding the right fit, thanks to which (and a lot of hard work), she got acceptances from six US universities and is excited about enrolling at Santa Clara University in the fall of 2017!

From the beginning, Rishika was very clear about her goals – she wanted to apply for an undergraduate degree in business to US universities. Her challenge: high school math is a requirement if you want to pursue a business major at many US universities and Rishika did not select maths as one of her subjects in high school. While this was a big concern, Rishika, her family and The Red Pen undergraduate team decided to tackle this issue head on and worked through it by researching universities where math was not a requirement for application. We even helped her explore options in Canada and Australia.

We realised the importance of leveraging Rishika’s family background – she had many interesting stories and insights growing up as the youngest sibling in a large family, and her family’s business background was an inspiration to pursue business studies. We helped her explore her strengths and learnings, which became the foundation for her essays.

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The fundamental role of independent educational consultants is to help students explore college opportunities and find the right place for them to succeed academically and socially. IECs don’t get students admitted—they help students demonstrate why they deserve to be admitted at appropriately chosen schools. They help students find colleges they might not have heard of—often out of their region—and they help students put their best foot forward.

Here are 5 things families should consider when looking to hire an IEC:

  1. Does the IEC belong to a professional association such as IECA with established and rigorous standards for membership?
  2. Do not trust any offers of guaranteed admission to a school or a certain minimum dollar value in scholarships.
  3. Ensure that the IEC adheres to the ethical guidelines for private counseling established by IECA.
  4. Find an IEC that visits college, school, and program campuses and meets with admissions representatives regularly in order to keep up with new trends, academic changes and evolving campus cultures.
  5. Do they attend professional conferences or training workshops on a regular basis to keep up with regional and national trends and changes in the law?