Scrutinizing a College Consultancy

There’s a great take-down piece in USA Today on a college consultancy known as Crimson Education, a firm whose counselors often recently navigated the admissions process themselves.

USA Today recently published a juicy take-down piece of a college consulting company known as Crimson Education. The piece, penned by Chris Quintana and Kevin McCoy, is entitled “This Harvard grad has made millions on U.S. college admissions for international students” and boy is it gripping. The take-down piece focuses on a New Zealand-based company founded by Jamie Beaton and Sharndre Kushor, Crimson Education. The college consultancy apparently prides itself on hiring students who recently successfully navigated the college admissions process (yes, we’re talking about college freshmen and such!). The company also cites admission rates of nearly 100%, though as Quintana and McCoy point out in their well-researched piece, “Crimson considers it a success if a student gets into at least one of eight or nine universities they have applied to.” One out of eight? Yikes is right!

As Quintana and McCoy write, “Crimson Education defends its use of college-age tutors, saying their recent admissions experience makes them more relatable mentors. The company insists its methods mean students are more likely than the general population to get into selective institutions. ‘For us, the most important thing is how well the person is able actually to interact with the student and get consistent outcomes,’ Beaton said in an hour-long interview with USA Today. He said the company rigorously recruits and trains tutors, and starts working with its high school clients early enough to ‘develop and build real skills.'”

We’re sure these eighteen year-old tutors are really helping these college applicants “develop and build real skills.” But of course! In any case, take a look at the take-down piece in USA Today. From claiming to have offices all over the world to citing membership in certain college admissions organizations to significantly overstating their success with college applicants, it’s truly gripping reading! We’ll leave our readers with a zinger from Crimson Education’s website: “Connect with Ivy League students past and present who know what admissions officers are looking for.” Uh huh. As our loyal readers know, we don’t give our students what admissions officers are “looking for.” Our students give admissions officers what it is they don’t even realize they want. The fact that Crimson Education touts this very sentence on their homepage kind of says all one needs to know in our book.



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