ACADEMIC ADVISING

Competition is intense as thousands of college applicants seek to be admitted to the school of their choice.  In fact, most families don’t realize that universities continue to become increasingly selective in their admission process.

Too often, families look only for a “name brand” school without considering the realistic possibility of admission, what the university is actually looking for, nor the financial burden in store to attend college.  Just because a student has an excellent GPA, a high standardized test score, or has done well in AP or IB courses, this does not guarantee admission to a sought-after university!  Today’s college landscape has changed, and there are many factors, beyond grades, that go into being admitted to any given university.

 

At INSPIRE College Solutions, we prepare your student for the journey and stay alongside you the entire way.  We find the “best-fit” universities where your student can thrive, including “Wi$eBuy”©, Match and Reach universities…in locations that are desirable…where success is a likelihood, rather than a possibility…and that is affordable!  We simply think you should have all the options and opportunities that keep you in control, so you can make informed decisions.

Academic Advising Process:

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We begin by getting to know our students with family goals in mind. This generally takes about an hour. We review your academic history, transcript, standardized test scores, future course enrollments, extra-curricular activities and community service. By identifying your unique strengths, gifting, talents and areas of interests, we will develop your individualized strategic plan.

1. Initial Meeting
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We will prepare your robust academic resume that reflects your accomplishments both in, and, outside the classroom for use in admission and scholarship applications.  And, if applicable to your unique pursuit, we will also guide you in preparing an online portfolio or personalized showcase presentation that helps you meet institutional requirements and distinguishes you from the competition.  This is an ongoing process throughout your ever-changing development in high school.  Creation and importance of social media: Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

2. Academic Resume
& Portfolio
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Your GPA at the end of your Junior year is what normally accompanies your initial college and scholarship applications, especially those with early deadlines.  We will advise you on standardized test strategies, how often to take specific tests, and what impact they have on your college admissions applications and scholarships.  Test prep also takes many forms and a tutor can often times make the difference in increasing your standardized test scores, attaining admission, or qualifying for a scholarship.  We will help you determine applicable resources, understand evaluations, and other on-line tools that are available to you.

3. GPA, Standardized Testing, Test Prep, & Tutors
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After our initial evaluation we prepare a customized list of recommended universities that positions you best for admissions, scholarships and academic programs within your intended field of study and interests.  We will then help you determine your top 8-10 colleges of interest.  This list will be categorized by: Reach, Match, and Wi$eBuy© options.  We will also review additional opportunities with you such as the impact of early action and early decision choices, test-optional universities, gap year, BS to MD, 3+3 Pre-Law and 3/2 options.  We will discuss this list with you thoroughly as your goals progress and perspectives change.

4. Best Fit College Target List
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There is no shortcut to investing your time wisely and strategizing properly when completing the Common App, private admission & scholarship applications, and writing required essays.  We will help you brainstorm your essay topics, guide you in fundamentals of developing an effective essay, and review/critique your final essay for effectiveness.  We will not write your essay, but we will make suggestions intended to help you succeed.  This process will require time, but thorough applications coupled with thoughtful essays can be the game-changer to being admitted to the college of your choice.  Often times your admissions application serves as your scholarship application.  We will present relevant scholarships to you and guide you through the process to helps you qualify for academic/merit based, private, religious, community, organizational and/or departmentally based scholarships.  Paying for your education with scholarship awards rather than student loans or your parents’ retirement savings is paramount to minimizing the rising costs of college and preserving your family’s savings and investments. 

5. Applications 
&  Essays
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Following our foundational groundwork, it’s important that you visit college campuses of choice to not only demonstrate interest to those colleges, but to also determine your best-fit opportunities and experience where you will be investing your next several years.  We help you organize your visits so you maximize your time on campus and also in that community.  If you will be a commuting student, it’s equally valuable to know the campus where you will study and interact with college personnel.  When it’s not feasible to visit a campus…virtual tours, additional research and strategic interviews are critical to your selection process.  We prepare you for your forthcoming interaction with professors, alumni screeners, admissions administrators, scholarship committees, financial aid departments and/or college fair representatives with mock interviews and thorough Question & Answer sessions.  We will also help you schedule strategic interviews, teach you how to prepare, guide you in professional etiquette and attire, describe what to expect in the interview, what to ask, and how to leave a lasting positive impression.  Through the process you will gain confidence as you look forward to your college career.

6. College Visits & 
Interviewing Process
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As you receive acceptance letters, admission offers and financial aid awards, we will thoroughly review and analyze all the comparative costs and benefits for each of your target schools.  We consider the impact of deadlines, early decision, early action, and additional opportunities between competing colleges.  We look at the context of every student’s unique situation to determine the best-fit for success, and whether an appeal may be in order before any acceptance or enrollment decision is made. 

7. Offers, Evaluations, & Decisions
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It is very important to remember that this is your education…and not your parent’s.  You must meet deadlines, you must complete forms, and you must finish tasks…on time…and with purpose.  Our responsibility is to hold you accountable and encourage you throughout the process.  We want the journey to be enjoyable.  Competition is fierce, so put yourself in the best possible position where we can all celebrate your success.  We will be with you the entire way!

8. Student Accountability