Our mission is to level the playing field of college admissions, regardless of socioeconomic status.
College admissions is not fair. The truth is, public high school students are at a significant disadvantage relative to their private school peers in terms of resources.
Consider these alternate, but very real, scenarios:
At private schools, students are automatically paired with their own college counselor, someone who will guide them through the entire college process. It starts with helping determine their unique passions and interests. Then it’s everything from choosing the perfect school list, all the way to crafting an amazing resume and unbeatable college essay. Oh, and it starts as early as freshman year at some schools.
At public schools, the average guidance counselor to student ratio in the US is 1:472. Students receive virtually zero personalized attention. The mission of the guidance counselor is typically just to make sure you get in somewhere, never mind where you’ll actually fit in, grow as a person, and want to spend the next 4 years of your life. Some students never even discuss college with their guidance counselors until senior year.
Now, don’t get us wrong — we have nothing against private schools. In fact, we work with private school students all the time because they recognize the unique value of our services (plus our results speak for themselves). But when you remember that college is the 2nd biggest financial decision a family makes (house is #1), it becomes clear how grossly under-resourced families are.
So families are turning to private admissions counselors for help. But local admissions advisors often use outdated admissions practices and typically have pretty small sample sizes for their clients, so their advice to families is often based on “feeling” and “intuition” rather than actual admissions trends or data. For a decision that is so critical to a student’s future, this level of uncertainty is just irresponsible on the part of the local counselor.
Meanwhile, admissions isn’t getting easier, and the colleges themselves are partly to blame. Universities are in an arms race to drive up the size of their applicant pool so they can drive down their acceptance rate (i.e. increase rejections). All so they can improve their rankings. Good for them, but not good for high school students and their families.
At CollegeVine, we are trying to level the increasingly unfair playing field, and we are fundamentally on the side of students and their families.
At our core, we are trying to accomplish the goals of 1) using mentorship to build stronger students who are going to be successful in life, and 2) helping them navigate the admissions process according their goals, whether it’s getting into a very competitive top university or simply finding the best school for them.
By selectively hiring only the most talented, successful college students and rigorously training them in all aspects of admissions, we’ve created a network of expert admissions mentors who have recently succeeded in the process themselves. This concept of near-peer mentorship — students helping students — has been key to helping our clients become more effective individuals, develop unbelievable resumés, gain admission to their dream schools, and manage the college process with minimal stress.
And with a fee structure starting at considerably less than our competitors, we are uniquely affordable.
Additionally, beyond our services, we maintain two very significant publications on the web. The first is our Admissions Blog, which delivers free content from our network of experts at the nation’s top universities, answering students and families’ real questions about college. The second is our Zen Digest, the first ever online media property dedicated to reducing stress and providing perspective to students and families throughout the admissions craze.