Getting into the university or college program of your dreams can be difficult, even in the best of situations. Many applicants turn to the services of a professional admissions consultant, who can assist them in this daunting process in hopes of increasing the odds of acceptance into their school of choice. But is employing the services of an admissions consultant worth it?
What is an Admissions Consultant?
When students need help applying to universities or colleges as well as require assistance during the interview or financial aid application process, an admissions consultant may be hired. While high school guidance counselors provide some college application support and advice, most schools do not have the ability to hire counselors for the express purpose of advising university-bound students through the challenging process as an admissions consultant does. An admissions consultant will take students from the exploratory phase through the multiple application and interview steps as well as follow up with students as they navigate college acceptances and secure financial aid and scholarships. This degreed professional may work independently or with a firm or an agency, but all will be well-versed in the “inside track” information needed to successfully get into a wide variety of colleges and universities.
Benefits of an Admissions Consultant
Students that use an admissions consultant can expect to receive multiple services when one is employed to help in this process. Some services that are potentially included when an admission consultant is hired are:
- a comprehensive evaluation of student’s academic and personal attributes and accolades that may be used in the application process
- detailed analysis of future potential degrees to be pursued and related career opportunities
- in-depth review of potential university or college programs that may be considered
- direct guidance on filling out applications and securing required references
- help in the preparation of personal statements for applications
- review or editing of resume and essays required for applications
- interview preparation and debriefing
Is an Admissions Consultant Worth It?
Yes, hiring an admissions consultant can be worth it for many students. Ten of the most common circumstances that warrant engaging a professional to help you or your student navigate the admissions process are when a student:
1. is applying to a highly competitive school like an Ivy or other school with low acceptance rates
2. only wants to attend one specific university or college
3. doesn’t feel that previous college guidance has provided them with enough information or comprehensive support to be successful in the application process
4. will be competing against international students for a spot or when the student wants to consider an international college or university
5. has financial considerations for college funding
6. needs guidance to determine what to study in college and how to pair up that interest and ability with potential schools
7. wants to build a more competitive application
8. needs help managing their priorities in school before and during the application process
9. needs extra support with college application essays
10. wants to increase their odds of acceptance at their school(s) of choice
Hiring an Admissions Consultant
Students who decide to work with an admissions consultant should be sure to find a reputable person or company to work with, looking at reviews of the top admissions consultants and asking for statistics pointing to success with previous clients. Many consultants provide individual services as well as comprehensive packages, so hiring a consultant can be within the budget of just about everyone. A consultant is a great investment for many prospective college students. Since consultants can provide helpful, specific and personalized support during the sometimes-tricky route to being a college student, hiring a professional to guide and support you while you make plans to go to college can be just what you need to end up at the school of your dreams.