There’s an article in “The Huffington Post” today by Ruth Starkman entitled “Private College Admissions Consultants: Does Your Child Need One?” that discusses the booming private college admissions consulting industry. When our Founder, Bev Taylor, began Ivy Coach, there weren’t many private college counseling companies around the country. Now, there are thousands. It seems like anyone who got into a good college, whose kid got into a good college, or who just wants to earn a little extra money every year to supplement their income as veterinarians seek to work as private college admissions consultants (in spite of their lack of expertise).
In the op-ed, Ms. Starkman writes, “Fee-based college advice has long been available, but where such services once catered to students with difficult cases, an uneven transcript or learning differences, now they are becoming mainstream. Responding to public demands for greater insight and access to college, private admissions consultants offer a range of services from test preparation and college selection, to essay and interview coaching and application packaging. Some consultant businesses provide a bevy of courses and coaches. Others merely focus on the application and are small businesses owned by individuals, who may have worked in counseling, admissions or for a university in the past. Still others are new to the profession and have an interest in working with teenagers and families. Their backgrounds and experiences vary greatly from education to marketing to athletics and the arts, as do their services.”
She’s right in that, like in any industry, there is a range in the quality of private college admissions consulting businesses and it’s always important to read through the services so that you’re fully aware of what you’re paying for. We couldn’t agree more. We’ve written extensively over the years about the benefits of hiring a private college admissions consultant and if you want to read some more reasons, check out our Why Hire A College Counselor page.