05 March 2015

University of California to Freeze Enrollment

Posted in Perspectives

university of california freezes enrollmentUniversity of California President Janet Napolitano indicated earlier this week that the UC system will not expand enrollment of California freshmen and transfers this fall if more funds are not appropriated from the state. Furthermore, enrollment of out-of-state students at UC Berkeley and UCLA will be capped.

Click here for a Los Angeles Times report on the topic.

02 March 2015

Are Prestigious Private Colleges Worth the Cost?

Posted in Perspectives

Applicant, Employer and Expert Perspectives

wsjThis article from the Wall Street Journal explores the "value" of attending a name-brand college from three perspectives: the applicant's, the and the employer's and an admissions expert.  The article also includes a list of "best value" schools courtesy of PayScale that considers return on investment (future reported salaries) in addition to cost.  

Click here to read the article now.

27 February 2015

Should I Major in Business?

Posted in Perspectives

business majorsBusiness and related fields are the most popular undergraduate majors in the country, accounting for approximately 20% of all college students. If you're thinking about it but still aren't sure, continue reading about the pros and cons of an undergraduate business degree and perspective from pundits, courtesy of the New York Times.


27 February 2015

More High School Seniors Taking Early Admission to College

Posted in Early Admission, Perspectives

early admission article from the los angeles timesIn this Los Angeles Times article, Carla Rivera writes about the rising number of college applicants taking advantage of early admission programs to remove stress and uncertainty from the admissions process.

The article also looks at early admission from the school perspective, and why/why not schools choose to participate.  

With admission rates falling and the number of early admission programs on the rise, we maintain that every college applicant needs to at least consider the possibility of applying early.  It may not always be appropriate, but when it is, it's a valuable way of maximizing odds and minimizing wasted motion for simply applying 60 days earlier than normal.   

Read the early admission article now


11 February 2015

Getting the Most Out of Your First College Tour

Posted in Perspectives

college tour tipsWith ski week and spring break right around the corner, it's time to plan for college visits.  Here's a list of top tips for making sure you get the most out of the experience.


10 February 2015

College Applicant Trends

Posted in Your College List, Early Admission, Perspectives

Insights from UCLA survey of 150,000+ college freshmen

UCLA TitleThe Higher Education Research Institute at UCLA recently published The American Freshman: National Norms Fall 2014, a survey of 150,000+ first-time, full-time students at over 200 four-year U.S colleges and universities.

The study covers a broad range of topics, including college admissions.  What's clear is that students are applying to more schools than ever, they're getting into their top choice schools less frequently, and that early admission is becoming a very important consideration in choosing colleges.  

Click on the Continue Reading link below details.

06 February 2015

More College Freshmen Report Having Felt Depressed

Posted in Perspectives

nytThis article from Allan Schwarz of the New York Times highlights one of the downside impacts of modern day college admissions.  

In a survey conducted by UCLA of over 150,000 college freshmen, 9.5 percent of respondents reported having "frequently felt depressed" during the past year, up from 6.1 percent just five years ago.  A significant factor: being overwhelmed by schoolwork and other commitments.

Click here for the article.

28 January 2015

College Admissions Racket: They're Not Going to Let You In Anyway

Posted in Perspectives

Bloomberg-LogoSeveral top colleges and universities—including the University of Chicago, Duke, Columbia, Bates, Washington University in St. Louis, UPenn, Vanderbilt and Yale—took the unusual step of extending deadlines to college applicants this past January.  This article from Janet Lorin of Bloomberg questions whether this was for the benefit of the applicants or out of self-interest to juice up their application submissions and fees.

At the heart of the matter is whether colleges have become too sales-driven in their quest for lower admit rates and higher prestige. One can't help but feel that we're in an arms race that's creating too much collateral damage in the form of frazzled college applicants and families. 

Click here for the article.



27 January 2015

Obama Relents on Taxing 529 Withdrawals

Posted in Perspectives

nytCommon sense prevails!  The Obama Administration is relenting on their recent proposal to tax 529 savings plan withdrawals.  

Check out the latest New York Times article for the details.

23 January 2015

White House Proposes Taxable Withdrawals on 529 Plans

Posted in Perspectives

nytThe Obama Administration is proposing a significant change to 529 college savings plans—to make withdrawals taxable.  

Of course, this would apply only to new contributions, but regardless this feels like a terrible policy move for advocates of affordable education.

Check out this New York Times article for more insight and perspective.

20 January 2015

10 Things the College Admissions Office Won't Tell You

Posted in Perspectives

marketwatchHere's an article from Daniel Goldstein at Marketwatch entitled, "10 things the college admission office won't tell you."  It attempts to shed insight on topics such as grade inflation, essay authenticity, perceived exclusivity and need-aware admissions.

Click here to read the article

15 January 2015

Financial Aid for the Middle Class

Posted in Perspectives

wsjSeveral colleges are now attempting to cast a wider net with respect to financial aid.  The beneficiary: the middle class.  

This article from the Wall Street Journal outlines some of the initiatives being taken by public and private schools throughout the nation to earmark more grant aid to families earning between $65,000 and $150,000 per year.

Click here to read the article.

09 January 2015

Here's One Way to Get Early Admission Into College: Be Rich

Posted in Perspectives

Bloomberg-LogoThe title of this Bloomberg/BusinessWeek article leaves a lot to be desired, but it does correctly point out that affordability issues can often prevent applicants from applying to binding early decision programs because they won't be able to shop around for the best financial package.  

More importantly, the article does reinforce our strong belief that every rising senior needs to consider the possibility of applying early given how favorable the admission rates can be.  It may not always be appropriate—tools like College Kickstart can help you figure this out—but it should never be ignored. 

Click here for the article.

06 January 2015

Insights from Duke's Dean of Admissions

Posted in Perspectives

forbesRising seniors and parents—here's a great video from Forbes Magazine featuring Christophe Guttentag, Duke's Undergraduate Dean of Admissions.  It's entitled, "Who Gets Into Top Colleges and What Makes The Difference" and you'll find it chock full of interesting insights from the inside.

Click here to watch the video.

19 December 2014

Department of Education Unveils College Rating Plan

Posted in Perspectives

DoEThe U.S. Department of Education outlined its framework for rating colleges in a report issued earlier today, as reported by the New York Times.  It plans to group schools into one of three categories: high-performing, low-performing and those in-between.

The article is interesting for two reasons: first, it provides a preview for how the government plans to assess college performance, and second, it's an instructive example of guarding against "false precision."

Click here for the Department of Education College Ratings Framework release.

Click here for the New York Times article.

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