Intensive Prep Coaching

One-on-one college admissions coaching and mentoring to help students compete!

Great College Advice® provides direction and support, as well as a helpful accountability mechanism, to keep top students motivated, diligent, and ultimately successful.

College Admissions Coaching to Achieve More

The college admissions process—especially at the most selective colleges and universities—requires that students achieve a level of excellence that doesn’t come easily.

For students aiming for the most selective colleges and universities in the United States, Great College Advice® offers guidance and mentoring as they pursue outstanding records of achievement in high school. This mentoring begins as early as the 8th grade and can continue throughout high school. The primary focus of this counseling is on the so-called “passion project” that often defines the most successful applicant to the Ivy League, other top 25 universities (Stanford, Notre Dame, Vanderbilt, Johns Hopkins, University of Chicago, etc.), and the most selective liberal arts colleges (Williams, Middlebury, Bowdoin, Pomona, etc.). This counseling offers young people an additional resource to help them imagine, plan, and execute their own vision of excellence. Great College Advice provides direction and support, as well as a helpful accountability mechanism, to keep them motivated, diligent, and ultimately successful. While the implementation of this vision is entirely the responsibility of the student, the guidance and advice we offer can inspire confidence. Most students of this caliber benefit from a monthly meeting with a counselor with regular email check-ins to keep the student on track and accountable. However, these sessions are priced by the hour so that families can control both the commitment and the cost. After each session, the counselor provides the student and family with a detailed summary of what was discussed and the next steps the student has decided to take.

What Do the Most Selective Colleges Want?

Back in the day, colleges were looking for “well-rounded” individuals. They sought students with excellent academic records who also had a wide variety of interests and abilities.

Today admissions offices focus on building a well-rounded class. Therefore, they now seek students who are more specialized, and who have achieved high levels of excellence in whatever area that interests them most.  

Excellence is not something students generally just walk into. It takes equal measures of diligence, creativity, and resilience. It takes the ability to become a leader of one’s peers. It takes a focus on the things that are genuinely interesting to the student.  

And it takes time. It takes vision. And for many, it requires a level of accountability to ensure that the goals the student sets for him or herself come to fruition.  

We provide one-on-one college admissions coaching and mentoring to help students compete in a global game. 

Note that these college admissions coaching sessions are available only in combination with the Elite Great College Advice package.


"Pam helped me so much throughout the college admissions process. She was able to help me find colleges that would best fit me, set a schedule that took some of the stress out of the process, and in the end got me into a school I am very excited about."
Jenna W.

What is the
“Passion Project”?

Simply stated, the passion project is an endeavor in which the student achieves a level of accomplishment and excellence.

In our college admissions coaching, we help students focus on something that interests them. It could be a field that will captivate their interest for the rest of their lives or it could be something on which they focus on for a while and then move on.

Together, we identify this area of interest and set out to deepen it so that students will achieve a level of excellence and stand out in the admissions process.  

Examples of Effective College Admissions Coaching

Here are some examples of interests that students have explored with counselors at Great College Advice and developed a high level of accomplishment through college admissions coaching.

The student engaged in a research project on Middle East politics with a professor he met at a university seminar. He visited Israel for 6 weeks and was an intern for nearly two years with a member of the state House of Representatives. He also decided to focus more on Public Forum debate, and surprised himself when he became a state qualifier.

The student now attends the University of Pennsylvania.

Initially, this young man thought he had no distinguishing interests. Since childhood, however, he had been fascinated with planes. The student read widely on the history of flight as it pertains to waging war. He flew flight simulators, visited aircraft carriers, went to air shows, and built dozens of models that filled his bedroom.

The student is now president of the student body at Grinnell College.

The student pursued strong interests in her own art, including attending two highly selective summer programs in studio art. She complemented her own creations by a year-long internship at an art gallery and becoming a volunteer tour guide for a massive international art show.

The student now attends Stanford University.

The student spent two summers studying French intensively while living with a host family in France. She complemented her interest in the language by volunteering at the Alliance Française, working at international exhibitions promoting French products, and becoming an intern for a summer at the largest French publicity firm in the world. She also took occasional classes on how to bake French pastries–which left her mother frustrated by the constant mess in the family kitchen.  

The student graduated from Princeton University.

The student regularly took trips to the airport to take photos of aircraft from all over the world, which he uploaded to a website for hobbyists who share an interest in plane spotting. Some of his photographs became very popular on this website. This, in turn, prompted the student to learn more about photography through classes and online tutorials. He began to specialize in drone photography and entered several photo contests.

The student now attends Brown University.

These are but a few examples of the sorts of projects that the counselors at Great College Advice help cultivate through intensive college prep coaching. There is no formula for these. Rather, our guidance allows students to make good decisions, develop plans, and execute their plans with confidence. The process is a mixture of encouragement, brainstorming, problem-solving, and accountability coaching.  

Still have questions about how the best college admissions advice can help your family?

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