Feedback From Families

Personalized Advice, Colleges that Fit
Barbara,
I can’t thank you enough for your help this past year.  Last summer I was in a panic about college applications, dreading the process and worrying that we hadn’t done enough to prepare in my daughter’s high school years.  You guided the process through transcripts, course descriptions and the Common App but more than that you developed a relationship with her.  You helped her to develop a college list that fit her, that worked with both her strengths and her needs.  Your ability to guide her to discover new colleges, to look beyond the glossy pages of the brochures was important and powerful. You saw her, making this process about her discovering strengths that she could bring to a college.  With your help she was accepted to 9 out of her 10 schools with excellent merit aid at most of them.   And then when the final pick came, you were there with the exact right words to help her decide where she would be happiest.  Your advice was never generic, always looking towards what was best and possible for her. You took what could have been a tough year and made it a journey that she emerged from stronger and more confident in her path forward.
Thank you!”  Kristin, parent in Washington

Student Delighted, Parents Relieved
“Thanks so much Barbara for your help as we negotiated our daughter’s very strange path to college. It was difficult enough to try to figure out how to aim her–since she wanted both a quirky, small school and a solid astrophysics program. Figuring out who would take her, given the hodge-podge nature of our “home school”– spread out across 6 schools in 4 countries–was even harder, especially since so much depending on funding. To have it all come together, over the summer and a year early, was something we could have never done without you.  She’s delighted with her choice, academically and socially, and we’re relieved to have essentially side-stepped the stress of the application process.”  Biz, parent in North Carolina.

Pertinent and Helpful Guidance
Barbara was such a lifesaver through the nerve wracking college application process! She gave us pertinent and helpful guidance (which I didn’t find anywhere else), useful essay edits and suggestions, even technical advice for our problems with the Common App. Her responses were always fast, usually within an hour or two. If you shop around, you’ll see that her fees are very reasonable. I felt so supported by Barbara, who understands what a homeschool parent goes through when they help launch their child into the world. Our son’s applications were the best they could be, thanks to her. I can’t recommend her highly enough! -Sue, parent in California

Neutral Third Party – “That’s a good question for Barbara”
Although we had talked informally for several years, I began officially working with Barbara during the summer of my daughter’s junior year. Right out the gate she saved us time, money, and headaches with advice on the best test (ACT vs. SAT) for my daughter’s abilities and interests. She spent a lot of time getting to know my daughter and what she wanted in a college experience. Barbara’s advice was a welcome addition to that provided by my daughter’s independent school guidance office. Her insights on which colleges and universities to keep on our “explore” list and which to jettison helped us narrow our focus on what was important. The biggest advantage Barbara offered was her ability to act as a neutral third party. When my daughter had questions about the admission process, for example, I could say, “That’s a good question for Barbara!” My daughter e-mailed Barbara for answers, which empowered my daughter and allowed me to avoid teenage dismissiveness of my answers to her questions. Our college selection process went smoothly, so of course we derailed at the end of April just days before the decision day of May 1. Barbara was available for an emergency phone call in which my daughter realized that her first-choice school, which was a perfect fit for her, was in fact too far away for her comfort. Barbara’s calming manner, expert advice, and knowledge of my daughter worked in tandem with high school college guidance to come up with an innovative plan that met all of my daughter’s needs.

Barbara takes the time to get to know both parent and student in order to offer the best advice to meet everyone’s needs. I knew my child’s needs mattered to her, and I’m grateful to the support during what can be a very stressful and prolonged process.

I highly recommend Barbara’s services to any college-bound student and his family, regardless of achievement or income level. You won’t regret it. – Gretchyn, parent in Pennsylvania

Started Discouraged – Ended with Success
“Dear Barbara,
We are grateful for all of your kind assistance as our family went through the college admissions process. With low motivation, our daughter doesn’t fit the “perfect student” profile and she’s not a strong tester. We were feeling discouraged about how colleges would view her application. You guided us to focus on the big picture and help our daughter build on her areas of strength, including her active involvement in community service.  She ended up thrilled with the results of her college search. She was admitted, with a big scholarship, to her first choice college. She’s very excited about her future and we are too!”– Susan, parent in Pennsylvania

Simplified High School Planning
“Thank you for helping us plan for dual enrollment and testing. It was so much easier to get this done with your help and I feel better knowing we have a good plan for high school.” -Karen, parent in Oregon

Helpful, Prompt, Respectful, Accurate
“We knew our son wasn’t going to be a typical college applicant–he had been private schooled, homeschooled, private tutored, umbrella schooled, had skipped grades, and he was younger than the average high school grad. I’d read books on getting into selective colleges and I knew that with today’s competitive admissions, we needed to get this right!

I felt plagued by questions, and Barbara came to my aid. First, she helped my son gain dual-enrollment at a university that had previously turned him down. Second, she guided us in creating a balanced and impressive transcript presenting our son as a solid high school grad, but with just the right flair to make him stand out. Third, Barbara assisted us in nearly every aspect of the college application process.

Barbara has a great understanding of college admissions and what colleges expect. No question is too ‘dumb’, and she gets back to you promptly, respectfully, and accurately.”- Michelle, parent in Florida

Great Rapport with Teens
“Thanks, Barbara!
Our son received a $160,000 merit scholarship to his first choice, highly selective, college! Your help in finding this scholarship which so uniquely fit him and your guidance in the application process was key. The admissions department was greatly impressed with the transcript, course description and homeschool profile. Best of all, you made writing the college essay painless for both him and me.

The college application process seemed particularly confusing and daunting to us as this was our oldest child and he had always been homeschooled. Your expertise helped us create a very thorough, accurate portrayal of him as a student, person and musician. Your ability to see and illuminate each child’s unique strengths and the rapport you establish easily with teens are a great asset.

The expertise you provided was invaluable and will be put to use again on our younger children’s college applications and in guiding them through their high school years. Thanks again for helping us to sum up our son’s teen years in such a fulfilling and accurate way.” -Jennifer, parent in Maine

Improved Confidence in Decisions
“Dear Barbara,
As a licensed school counselor, I thought I had the right information to navigate the college entrance process for my son.  After speaking with you, I realized the complicated higher education climate is constantly changing and we were overlooking some important details. Your expertise helped me feel confident that we made the right decisions and got the best possible financial aid package. Thank you!”   -Constance, parent in Ohio