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A Student's Story About Working with IvyWise

Wed, Aug 10, 2011 @ 01:30 PM

Considering Working with IvyWise? A Former IvyWise Student Tells her Story

IvyWise StudentThree years ago, my mom and I made the decision to seek independent college counseling firms. Although my high school offered two wonderful counselors, I craved more personalized attention and more detailed analysis of my applications. Enter IvyWise.

My mom and I had heard about IvyWise from several classmates who insisted that the counselors were incredible.

Working with IvyWise provided me with a fresh perspective on each of the schools I applied to. During just the Initial Consultation, my counselor gauged the competitiveness of my application and determined which schools would best fit my interests and needs. My session time was spent researching academic programs, building a thorough resume, brainstorming and drafting stellar essays, and preparing for interviews. Although these are all aspects of the process I probably could have done on my own and with my parents, my counselor judged my application from a former admissions officer’s point of view. For example, recognizing that admissions committees would not appreciate a generic “Why [x school]?” essay, my counselor suggested that I write about school-specific courses and activities.  

Even though I thought my college application process would be complete after pressing "Submit", my counselor continued advising me even after I was admitted to a number of my top choice schools. Prior to IvyWise, my top choices were Georgetown University and Notre Dame University, both of which I was accepted to; but my counselor recommended that I revisit colleges, since I had applied to several without a visit. With some nudging from my counselor, my family and I made a weeklong road-trip that spanned Wellesley College in Massachusetts to Washington University in Missouri. This trip, while unexpected, certainly sparked my final decision to enroll at Washington University. Visiting Washington University in person gave me a stronger sense of the tight-knit school community, along with an opportunity to sit in on several classes and gauge the general professor-student dynamic.

My IvyWise counselor’s insight made the process relatively stress-free and enjoyable. With her guidance and support, I achieved acceptances from nine out of the 12 schools I applied to. 

To those students who are preparing for the college application process—remember to relax and try to enjoy the experience; this is a great time for you to reflect and learn about yourself. Working with my IvyWise counselor during this process, I was pushed to evaluate my values, past experiences, and goals. Whether you are just starting to write your essays or getting ready to move onto campus, have fun and good luck!

Sarah Shanahan

Written by Sarah Shanahan

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