How to help your kid navigate the college admissions process -- from scheduling standardized tests to writing essays -- month by month, girlfriend's-guide style.
So, your child is a high school junior. You've heard other parents with kids older than yours whisper the word "college" like it was a terminal disease. You've seen their taut, maniacal grins as they try to hold it together. The process of weathering and conquering the college admissions process with a teenager is a daunting affair for many. Advice will pour in through friends, your child's guidance counselor, and your mother's neighbor's cousin.
Thankfully, Jill Margaret Shulman, a college admissions coach, application evaluator, college writing instructor, essayist, author, and empathetic parent, is here to be your fiercest ally. She'll guide you through the entire crazy ritual that college admissions has become, month by month, breath by deep, cleansing breath, until you drop your kid off at college where she will ignore your phone calls and texts.
Come as you are -- whether chill or roiling with anxiety -- and Shulman, along with a platoon of experts and fellow parents, will help you maintain your strength and sense of self-worth, so easily lost somewhere between your teenager's screaming, "I hate you! You're ruining my life!" and typing your credit card number into the College Board's website for the twentieth time.
You've got college admissions cracked, and now, this book has got your back.
Readers with children will find a good deal of useful information, along with a potentially irritating type-A parenting philosophy, in this primer to preparing teenagers for higher education from Shulman, the founder of a college essay coaching company. Readers will encounter discussions of SAT versus ACT tests, what a good score in either actually means, and how to reduce test anxiety. Ready to visit colleges? Shulman provides a helpful comparison of campuses, big and small, urban and rural, along with "dos and don'ts" for visits. Each chapter features mostly helpful "to-do" lists and other useful lists, such as the "Thank-you Note Checklist for Students" and "Strategies for Motivating Your Kid to Just Write the Thing" (i.e., personal essays). Some of the advice seems geared more to a second grader than a soon-to-be-college freshman ("When she's not working, let her play"). On the other hand, "What to Expect on Drop-Off Day" will be good prep for parents used to thinking of that day as a long way off. Depending on where readers fall on the helicopter parenting issue, this book will seem either an invaluable guide to prepping teens for college, or a surefire way of making them eagerly anticipate leaving the nest.