Success in Life

Success in Life

Success in life is more than just graduating from the “best” college.  However, finding the college that’s the best fit for you can help facilitate that success.  Your best fit college may not be the school ranked #1 by US News, or the school your parents went to, or the school your best friend is applying to – you get the idea.  So how do you find a college that will help you pave the path to success?   

Jullien Gordon has some advice on that topic in this TEDxTalk.  Jullien talks about the four types of capital that you need to develop in order to achieve success  

  1. Personal capital 
  2. Intellectual capital 
  3. Social capital 
  4. Financial capital 

Understanding these four types of capital can help you choose a college that will open doors for your future.     

Take Action 

As Jullien explains, you must be able to answer the question “Why do I want to go to college?”.  To answer that question, you need to know yourself.  Use the summer to consider what these four types of capital mean to you and why you want to go to college.  An answer to this question will help you define the best fit college for you.  

Questions? Let’s chat!

Bettina Weil

Weil College Advising, LLC

Is the Net Price Calculator a Reliable Tool?

Is the Net Price Calculator a Reliable Tool?

I was just corresponding with some fellow educational consultants about financial aid and net price calculators. For those of you not familiar with the term, a NPC is a very good tool used to determine how much a family would be paying for college. You can find NPCs in all – or almost all – college websites, in the financial aid page. You plug in your financial information and…tada! It spits out what you will pay for college. However, every tool has limitations and it might be useful to know what those are. My colleague Jeff Levy summarizes his thoughts here:
“My experience with net price calculators is that they are a good way for families to learn generally what a set of four, five, or six colleges might cost them. I don’t, however, think they are necessarily an accurate predictor of what any specific institution might cost them because so much depends upon the applicant pool the candidate is in. NPCs are using, at best, past data to inform their results, but they are not using current applicant pool data that financial aid administrators and enrollment folks are extensively relying on as they build their class and build their financial aid packages, applicant by applicant, simultaneously ensuring that they are meeting their enrollment revenue goals.
I am also usually not a proponent of using financial reasons to pull out of the ED contract, even though there is nothing unethical about doing so. Imagine a student is admitted to their ED dream school, but the award at this need-blind school that meets full need is $5K short of what the NPC predicted. For a family with an EFC of $18,000, an additional $5K annually is a lot of money, probably making the school unaffordable. What does a parent tell their child on December 20 when they receive this great news about their acceptance and heartbreaking news about their award? “We will negotiate with them,” the parent says. A likely response from the financial aid office, once they reopen after the holidays, is, “We have met your full need and are unable to increase your award.” Does the parent then tell this child that she must turn down the offer, not knowing for at least three months if she will get admitted at her selective RD schools and if she does get admitted whether those financial aid offers will be competitive with the one they are turning down? 
Guiding families wisely requires that we understand how important a factor cost is to them, and helping them understand fully the pros and cons of going the ED route.”
Questions? Let’s chat!
Bettina Weil
Founder, Weil College Advising, LLC
Goals for Next Year

Goals for Next Year

For most students, it’s officially summer now!  Given how this year ended, it may be hard to think about school in the fall.  But now is a good time to reflect on this past year and set your goals for the upcoming school year.  

Look back at this past year: 

  • Are you happy with your grades?   
  • Did you enjoy your classes? 
  • Did you spend enough (or too much) time in extracurricular activities?  
  • Are there activities or classes you wish you could have taken? 
  • What one change will you make for school next year? 

Take Action: Set a task with your goals for next year!

Need help? Let’s chat!

Bettina Weil

Founder, Weil CVollege Advising, LLC

info@weilcollegeadvising.com

AP Scores and College Credits

AP Scores and College Credits

Although this year AP tests were “non-traditional”, many colleges have said that they will still award AP credit (see this list by Prompt).  AP scores will be available online beginning July 15.  Scores are released over several days based on the state in which you tested.  View the date and location schedule, and your scores, on the College Board website.  

What is the AP exam score scale? 

There is no “pass” or “fail” on the AP tests.  It’s important to understand the definitions of the AP scores. 

5 = extremely well qualified | Many universities award college credit  

4 = well qualified | Some universities award college credit 

3 = qualified | Some universities award college credit 

2 = possibly qualified | No college credit awarded 

1 = no recommendation | No college credit awarded 

Send Your Scores to Your College 

Be sure you send your scores to the college you are attending in the fall.  The college needs your official AP scores to award you any college credit.  Additionally, your college may use these scores for placement purposes.  Even if you do not receive credit, it’s important to send your official score report.  Check with your college to confirm their policy on awarding AP credit.  You can also find those policies on the AP Credit Policy Search site.  You may also hear this information from your advisor at orientation, or see your college credits on your school’s student web portal.      

What if I have other scores? 

Go to www.apscore.org to view scores on tests you took in previous years. 

I have other questions about AP scores.

You can contact the CollegeBoard directly for AP questions by emailing apstudents@info.collegeboard.org. 

Have further questions? Let’s chat!

Bettina Weil

Founder, Weil College Advising, LLC

info@weilcollegeadvising.com

Application Stress?

Application Stress?

Applying to colleges can be a stressful process under the best circumstances.  In 2020, with the education system turned on its ear, the admission process might seem near impossible.  Standardized tests are canceled for the spring, high schools are closed changing the dynamics of grades and extracurriculars, and colleges are shifting application requirements.  From week to week, it can be hard to keep track of the changes.  So, what’s a high school junior to do?   

Focus on what you can control.  Minimize your stress by focusing on the parts of the application process that you can affect.  Here are some suggestions of things you can do now for your college applications.     

  1. Start your Common App Essay.  Haven’t started any college essays? Now is a great time.  Look at the Common App essay topics – the personal statement has a choice of 7 prompts.  Or look at the schools you are considering to find out if they require additional essays.  You can view the essay requirements on the college profile in GuidedPath.        
  2. Register for Senior Year Classes.  We may not know what fall will bring in terms of in-person school.  However, you want to have a challenging senior year schedule regardless.  Your senior schedule may be doubly important if your school adopted pass/fail grades for this year.   
  3. Study for Standardized Tests.  Although spring SAT and ACT dates were canceled, and many colleges have adopted test-optional policies,  odds are you may still need to take the SAT or ACT.  ACT is planning to offer tests in June and July, while the earliest SAT is schedule for August.  Use this summer to do extra test prep especially if you will only be able to take the test one time.    

Although it may feel like the admission process for the coming fall will be anything but normal, trust that colleges and admission officers are still looking for the same qualities – good students and good citizens.  Getting a head start on parts of your college application will allow you to be more adaptable this fall as the process continues to develop.    

Questions? Let’s chat!

Bettina Weil

Founder, Weil College Admissions, LLC

Senior Checklist

Senior Checklist

Senior Checklist

You are almost there!  What are your next steps? 

  • Finish strong!  Strive to finish the year with your best work.  We all know that the past weeks have been a challenge and online school is wearing on many people.  But honor the hard work you put into the year by finishing the last few days or weeks as the best student you can be.   
  • Check in with your college – often.  Situations at many universities are very fluid as administrators are trying to anticipate what the fall will bring.  No doubt you are getting updates via the student portal or by email but be sure to stay on top of changing information.  This may include updates for housing, orientation, registration, etc.  
  • Schedule new student orientation.  Many colleges may be making arrangements to move orientations to an online format for this summer – or delaying orientation until just before the fall semester.  Whatever the circumstance, you don’t want to miss it.  Orientation usually includes valuable advising information and will often be when you register for classes.   
  • Schedule placement tests.  Some colleges require you to take Math and/or other placement tests.  Find out the requirements and be sure to get it completed.  Sometimes your SAT, ACT, or AP scores will suffice, and you will not need to take a test.  If you have questions about placement test requirements, contact the college. 
  • Say thank you.  Tell teachers, counselor, coaches and others that have helped you, “Thank you”.  Give special thanks and appreciation to parents and family for support. 
  • Make summer meaningful.  Plan to work, improve your study skills, learn something new, or spend time (whether online or in person) with friends and family this summer.  Save any money you earn for when you start college in the fall. 
  • Get a physical.  You may need vaccine boosters or a physical exam from the doctor before beginning the fall semester.  Check with the college to understand their requirements.   

Questions? Let’s chat!

Bettina Weil

Founder, Weil College Advising, LLC