JRA Educational Consulting Blog

College Love Letters: Teacher Recommendations

Last Updated on Apr 26, 2021 9:13:43 AM

Class of 2022 – Are you feeling the love?

This is the ideal time to select the teachers who will write your letter(s) of recommendation for college. Junior core academic teachers are usually the best recommenders because they are more likely to have taught you in a high-level course, perhaps know you for several years and can speak to your growth. A teacher’s recommendation carries weight in the college admissions process because the teacher can evaluate − relative to other students − your work, intellectual vitality, resourcefulness, collaborative spirit, and more.

Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, Letter of Recommendation

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Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, Letter of Recommendation

What Does Harvard Look For In Its Applicants

Last Updated on Apr 19, 2021 10:18:59 AM

In the world of college admissions, the most selective colleges usually set the tone for everyone else. For example, when Harvard went test-optional, other colleges quickly followed suit. Brown University president Christina Paxon just announced that all students who have been vaccinated for Covid-19 will be welcomed back to campus this fall to attend classes and activities in person; many other colleges jumped on that bandwagon. Northeastern University (MA), Cornell University (NY), Fort Lewis College (CO), Nova Southeastern University (FL), Roger Williams University (RI), Rutgers University (NJ) and St. Edwards University (TX) are also requiring COVID-19 shots for students who wish to return to campus in the fall.

Topics: College Counseling, College Planning

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Topics: College Counseling, College Planning

Record Number of College Applications This Year

Last Updated on Mar 31, 2021 1:44:05 PM

Early on in the pandemic, as college students fled home, the forecast for the future of universities turned to gloom and doom. A year later, such talk of their demise proved premature. Not only are many colleges surviving, but larger, more competitive, and Ivy League colleges saw application numbers skyrocket in 2020; on the other hand, selective and smaller institutions saw declines.

Topics: College Counseling, COVID-19

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Topics: College Counseling, COVID-19

7 Tips for Transfer Students

Last Updated on Jan 12, 2021 10:14:22 AM

Did you know that our last two presidents were transfer students? President Trump attended Fordham University and transferred to the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania, and President Obama transferred from Occidental College to Columbia University. So, if you are unhappy at your current school, you can make a change.

Applying to college a second time is not an easy process; it takes lots of research and careful planning. Here are a 7 factors to consider:

Topics: College Counseling

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Topics: College Counseling

Present a Consistent Picture of Yourself in Your College Applications

Last Updated on Oct 8, 2020 6:00:00 PM

One thing that you absolutely DO NOT want to do is confuse college admissions officers by presenting contradictory – or inconsistent – information about yourself in your college applications. And there are multiple opportunities to do exactly that – through omission and commission.

Topics: College Admission, College Application, College Counseling, Activity Resume, Resume

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Topics: College Admission, College Application, College Counseling, Activity Resume, Resume

How Do I Find My Best Fit College?

Last Updated on Sep 5, 2020 7:00:00 AM

Ranking, selectivity, major, location! Is this college too big, too small? Can I even afford to go to college? Many students and their parents are overwhelmed by the number of decisions they face when choosing a college. Indeed, the process seems mystifying, and families wonder how they can wade through the data -- from national rankings to “best of” lists to college affordability tools. In today’s post, we’ll tackle some of these common questions to help you break free from the endless lists and get a better understanding of the selection process.

Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, College Planning

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Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, College Planning

College Application Advice: Selling Yourself and Your Activities

Last Updated on Aug 27, 2020 12:46:48 PM

Before we tell you what colleges are likely looking for in your list of activities, we’ll say this: their importance has not diminished in any way. In fact, it has probably increased in the face of so many colleges going test-optional because of COVID-19. Admissions officers will scrutinize your activities list and read between the lines to understand the true nature of your involvement to each activity. That brings us to activity “fundamentals” – what you must strive to include in your list.

Topics: College Admission, Common Application, College Application, College Counseling, Essay, College Tips

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Topics: College Admission, Common Application, College Application, College Counseling, Essay, College Tips

Covid-19 has Infected College Admissions!

Last Updated on Aug 26, 2020 3:21:41 PM

It’s a new school year that brings us a completely unanticipated college application environment: for one thing, more and more colleges are temporarily test-optional in the face of Covid-19; for another, it’s impossible to demonstrate your interest in a college by visiting its campus for a tour and information session. According to NACAC’s 2019 State of College Admission report, almost 83% of all colleges surveyed last year indicated that test scores were of considerable or moderate importance in making admission decisions. Additionally, 40% of the surveyed colleges said that demonstrated interest (a visit is part of demonstrated interest) was of considerable or moderate importance. That the pandemic has affected these two key factors, among others, and so has changed college admissions would be quite the understatement! The health crisis has upended the admissions evaluation process, redistributing the weight associated with the most important factors that have always been considered in admissions.

Topics: College Admission, College Application, College Counseling, COVID-19

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Topics: College Admission, College Application, College Counseling, COVID-19

Common Application: The Hidden Factors

Last Updated on Aug 5, 2020 11:58:20 AM

 

In an April blog post titled Recommendation Letters In the Era of Covid-19, we noted that “LORs [letters of recommendation] were important in admission decisions even before the Coronavirus made in-person interviews problematic, and they’re likely to increase in importance now.” Nothing that we’ve learned since then has changed our minds about that…

…but there’s another dimension to recommenders and recommendations about which you might not be aware: whoever completes your Common App School Report (often conflated with the “counselor recommendation”) is going to be asked to rate you in terms of the following factors and in this manner:

Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, Common App, Letter of Recommendation

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Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, Common App, Letter of Recommendation

COVID-19 and College Enrollment: Uncertainty and Trepidation Revisited

Last Updated on Jun 4, 2020 1:04:55 PM

On April 20th, we posted a blog titled “The Coronavirus and College Admissions: Uncertainty and Trepidation: Part I,” in which we discussed the serious economic and related consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic on college finances and admissions, and we followed that blog post with others on the same topic.

In this post, we’ll discuss the findings of McKinsey & Company, a broad-based provider of information to business and industry leaders, as presented in their May 21st mckinsey.com article titled COVID-19 and US higher education enrollment: Preparing leaders for fall. While the article was aimed at higher education administrators, much of its information is also highly relevant for students, parents, and high school educators and counselors.

Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, College Planning

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Topics: College Admission, College Counseling, College Planning