Monday, November 30, 2020

How Can I Afford College?

There is a million dollar difference between a high school graduate and college graduate, over their lifetime of earnings. What could be a better investment than a college degree?

Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Summer Plans?

What are your summer plans? Colleges are interested in how you are spending your summers. They don't rank "working a job" lower than "an expensive summer program on Harvard's campus". In fact, they don't rank summer plans at all, but expect that you do something. Colleges learn a lot about you as a person by how you spend your free time. It does not have to cost you any money. Be sure to check WHO is sponsoring the (expensive?) program. Often, for-profit companies rent out elite campuses to run summer programs, and advertise them to you and might lead you to believe it will help in getting into that college. You might assume that the admissions departments are running them. Check the fine print. 

Take a Summer or College Course

Summer Internships for students interested in STEM

Preview a College Course
Yale and MIT provide free and open access to a selection of courses taught by distinguished teachers and scholars. Before applying to either college, may I suggest you preview a course? It will make you a more informed applicant. Highly selective places like Yale & MIT would expect that you are involved in learning outside the Cheverus classroom. Have you explored Khan Academy? (free!) Check out Engineer4Free which offers college-level math, science & engineering classes.

Tuesday, November 3, 2020

What's a Gap Year?

Gap Year: take a break from schooling, and enjoy travel, paid work, training or volunteer work. Consider these well-know options: 

Monday, August 24, 2020

Junior Kick Off

Juniors & their Families - College Advising Kick Off - annually in late August

Handout 1: what to do 1st semester to become a more competitive applicant
Handout 2: Tulane University tips specifically for juniors
Timeline of College Advising events

Next up: look for an email from Ms Coddaire in December to set up your 30 minute family meeting.
Find the 2020 hour-long recording of the program on the College Advising YouTube channel.

Friday, March 13, 2020

Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida campus tour

I visited Lynn in January 2020 and was so impressed by their friendly community and obvious care for students. Ask me about Lynn & their unique facilities like their own airport!

Saturday, April 14, 2018

UMass Lowell campus visit April 2018

I took a tour of the 3 campuses that make up UMass Lowell: north, south and east. North & south are just across the river from one another, and the east campus is a quick shuttle drive away. Many students live on east campus and have classes on north or south.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

Junior Parents: College Info Night handouts (Feb 2020)

If you missed College Info Night for Parents of Juniors in Feb 2020, here are links to the handouts:

  1. Agenda for the info night.
  2. SAT Prep Course - sign ups begin Monday March 2, 2020
  3. Want detailed info on filing the FAFSA and what goes into the formula to come up with your Expected Family Contribution (EFC)? 
  4. Middlebury College Top 10 Things to Know about Need-Based Aid
  5. Schools that meet 100% of demonstrated need and what does that mean exactly? (contact Ms Coddaire via email for this handout: college at
  6. Two provocative articles: Fake News & College Admissions (like "no one is getting in anywhere") and Does Where You Go to College Matter?
  7. Map of the 27 Jesuit Colleges & Universities -
  8. Map of the Colleges That Change Lives -

Saturday, February 10, 2018

Loyola New Orleans & Tulane University

I visited Loyola New Orleans & Tulane University in January 2018.

Loyola New Orleans, a Jesuit university

 on St Charles Avenue in the Garden District, a pretty area of New Orleans with palm trees and street cars. They thought 55 degrees in January was chilly while I thought it was a welcome relief from a long Maine winter! Half of the 2500 student are from out of state. 85% live on campus.
 one of several quads

Friday, December 1, 2017

Basic Facts & Assumptions-read this first!

Grades are always the #1 thing colleges examine for admissibility. #2 is the rigor of courses you are enrolled in: college prep, honors and AP courses. If you are easily earning As in college prep courses, colleges expect you to move up. #3 are test scores (ACT or SAT). Are your scores consistent with your grades? A student with a 3.9 GPA and 550 SAT scores indicates a terrific work ethic that is overcompensating for average test scores. A student with 640 SAT scores and a 2.8 GPA is an underachiever: the test scores say the student is far more talented than the B- average he or she is earning in high school. At most colleges, scores and GPA must be commensurate. Students with the high GPA and so-so test scores should consider test-optional colleges, and students with the B average & high test scores need to work on their grades as much as possible, especially senior year. Use & Naviance to see which colleges are a good match for you.