The blog post below is a rough transcription of the video above – so please listen to the video if possible – otherwise, here is what was in the video:
Hey everyone, it's Neha from College Shortcuts, I'm just really excited.
I'm in my Uber on the way to my client in Florida. I thought I would just do a quick video because I have the time. I'm obviously not driving someone else's driving, which is awesome because I wanted to talk with you a little bit about you know why college consulting is so important for your kid.
Now, what most people don't realize is that the entire college admissions process can be really stressful. You know I was sitting down and I was at Rice University, my Alma mater. This week has been a pretty non-stop week for us here at College Shortcuts.
They were telling me about the future of college admissions and how eventually, possibly in 10 years, they'll just be an algorithm built that can eventually look at all the data of applications where you can choose based on the GPA, the test score, certain keywords, and the extracurricular activities, etc. If you think about it, like just thought of the entire admissions teams being completely eliminated in the process and they can create these algorithms through the data to make sure that they get a diverse population. It really kind of changes the name of the game and the college admissions industry.
I know for a lot of you, you guys have one maybe two, three, or four kids, for some of you may be done this once or maybe done it twice, for yourself you did it, and you maybe only applied to two or three schools, but no matter where the trend is going, there's going to be a requirement for students to really understand what it is that schools are looking for, and what their unique angle is.
I think it's the one thing that most people underestimate is the importance of the unique angle, because so many times we think that "Okay, you know my kid got a 3.5 GPA." They did a 30 on the ACT. They've been part of Boy Scouts.
You know it’s funny. We drove by the Big Boy Scouts building just now and I thought about it - they should just be able to get into any school that is on their list it should be easy.
The problem with that is, that's not always the case.
I think most people haven't realized that there's 3.3 million students every year applying to college, 3.3 million.
That is so many students every year applying.
At College Shortcuts we're helping what I would call a handful of the select that really want to get the help they want.
Really want to get in.
Really want to get the service that they need to really understand what it takes to get in.
It's so painful, you know, I got an e-mail this morning in my inbox from a mom that said "You know Neha, I wish I'd heard about you earlier with my older kid. You know we didn't know what we were doing. We just thought we could do it on our own. My student was a top student and applied pretty much at the end of the game. He got in nowhere. Now we're having to fund an entire gap year of his life until he can get in the next time." I said "Well, you could get them in spring semester." She goes "My son really wants to join in, you know when everyone else does, and really be part of a community."I thought to myself, wow, I wonder what it costs to fund that child for an entire year. Just the food, the activities, he's going to want to possibly travel, his housing, his car, all of those things.
I thought to myself, like wow, you know if she invested in College Consulting, which results in thousands of dollars in scholarships in getting into the right place, saving a year's worth of your kids time, and really getting this done, she would be avoiding this 12-month, what I would call "mistake" that happened.
It's painful that I hear stories like this. You know you don't realize we have hundreds of thousands of parents that are watching us constantly on Facebook and listening to our messages. I get messages of the good things that are happening in kids’ lives.
I also get messages of the warning signs where parents are really struggling and having a hard time, or when they've made mistakes and they just didn't know any better.
So many times we just trust what we know and we only know what we know, right?
I think to myself about the fact that when I talk on average with some of the top students that go to public school. A lot of them will say "Well Neha, I mean I just didn't have a high school counselor that was available to me. I just didn't know that there were so many steps and on the level which I should have taken care of this even though I'm in the top 10% or top 20%. I didn't know all of this stuff." So you just don't know what you don't know.
The issue is you can spend hours upon hours like reading about things. I'm the type of person just you know I hate shopping. It sounds funny or like "Oh, you must love shopping." I don't actually.
I like to know what it is that I'm looking for. I like to do my research, and then I go and I get it and then I leave. I don't like to think over it. I don't like to mull over it, because I don't like to waste my time.
I think that's one of the biggest things that parents don't realize is that when you aren't booking things like this, I think to myself and it's so hard, when I listen to parents they're like "Oh my child, I promised they'll get it done." They worked with me and they have a second kid and they're still dragging their feet in the process because they're hoping the teenager will want to do it.
They don't realize that with us we've decided that we're not going to be working with kids late in the semester, because in all honesty the later you wait the harder it is to get your kid in.
If we can't try for results then why would we work with those children?
So although it's the end of July and a lot of people are like "Oh I've got till November and December." You have to realize that you can't force an essay to come out.
Getting into college is a little bit like creating a baby, in a same way. It's like you know you make the decision that you want to have a child right or you make the decision that you want to get your kid into college. There's a lot of things that happened to create this baby as I call it the application itself that will eventually be sent off. It takes time. You have to feed the baby in the stomach. You have to have breasts. You have to take time.
It's the same process in the college admissions process. You have to sit there and think about it which colleges are the right fit.
How do you get that information?How do you know that your kid is going to go to the right place and really be happy where they are?
I mean do you realize that this is the first time your kid is officially leaving the house. Like leaving you, forever. Basically their support network becomes who they surround themselves with.
Most people don't realize that teenagers are very malleable at that age. It is an area of development where they can absolutely either turn for the best or turn for the worst.
You know as someone who runs two companies I hear from both sides. I hear from parents that have 22 year olds that are still a sophomore in college because they fell through the cracks of education and no one was there to guide them.
By the way I'm not talking about families that don't have means. I'm talking about families where you know some of their grandparents and parents run over 600 employee companies.
They know, these are top level families in terms of the amount of work they put in all day long. The kind of people they spend time with and yet, still we're dealing with these kids that still a sophomore as a 22 year old. No one was a mentor there. No one is holding them accountable.
They wait until the very last minute.
It's just waiting until the last minute that really does a disservice for our children.
I just wanted to kind of wrap up my week with you guys because you know we've been having such a good time chatting and talking. Everyone that's logging in please say "hi" or comment below. I love seeing you guys on.
I wanted you to know that where your kid goes, ultimately decides who they spend time with, what they're going to be like, what they're going to find, fall in love with, in terms of what subjects they love, what type of teachers they have.
You know we want to make sure that they are very much taken care of.
While many people think "Oh I'll just pick a school off the U.S. News World Report list." That's not always the most effective strategy. You know that is a menu of colleges, but we need to figure out like what type of school is the right school for your child.
With College Consulting that's where you really get that deep dive of getting a sense of what your kid is like.
What is their personality?
Do they have a mentor that's similar to them or that can really relate with them and feel like a sibling in a way that's been through the process?To make it easier and more fun.
You know I was in my gym class this morning and I thought to myself, wow, like I would so much rather be sleeping. I don't know why I'm in this group or I could just skip this work out. There are so many excuses, constantly that we can have around all of this stuff where you can literally just be like "Oh I can just not do something or I can put it off."
Unfortunately with college admissions you can't put it off for that long, because eventually what happens is you start missing deadlines.
Early decision is coming up in October. If you think that you could put an early decision application together to where they say "yes" to you. You are certainly wrong. If you can do it in such a short amount of time.
I see a lot of people logging on. I'm heading to Florida right now for this weekend to work with some high profile clients on the college admissions process. So please comment "hello". Glad to see you guys on.
I just want you to know that these deadlines are coming. I know it's so easy to keep going on vacation or to continue to focus specifically on other things. I see parents that are like, "Oh you know what, I've gotta book for soccer camp, and you know I've got to get my kid practicing for football. Okay we've got these other activities and etc."
It floors me because priorities are everything, and if you're not realizing that priorities are everything, sometimes I wonder what people think about it what is the end goal specifically.
You know the end goal is all about making sure that you guys are understanding what it is.
The end goal of course is to ultimately get into a great college.
So why are we not investing our time and energy into the process?
You know so many times I'll hear from parents and it’s like, "Oh you know we'll just make sure to handle that at the very end."
They'll prioritize for all these other things instead of the test prep needed or make sure the grades are right or helping with the essays and the resume. Those are all the things that need to be focused on.
The amount of time you spend in a sport, like irrelevant by the way. Like totally irrelevant and not that important.
I think one of the things that most people think is that, you know, "Oh I'll just specifically be able to do this later".
You can spend all your time focused on extracurricular activities. Go for it. Just let me know what happens in like eight or nine months when you're done with the application.
You're waiting for your results and you don't get in because you haven't prioritized the level of work needed to get it done.
I just wanted to shoot you guys the videos at the end of the week. I know we're all really looking forward to our weekend and spending time with family and I urge you.
I urge you to take just a few minutes over the dinner table or over lunch or when you're driving with your kid. To ask them and just be like, "Hey you know what, I've been watching some videos online and I really would like it if we talk about getting this set up. You know we're spending so much time setting up all your other activities. I know you want to get out of the house. I know you want to graduate and you want to go to college. So I would really like to I'm going to go ahead and reach out to College Shortcuts. See what we can do to get this off your plate because I know that it's so much easier to avoid it and do it."
But in the end you really want to make sure that you know we get this off your plate so you can really enjoy senior year. Most of the clients I work with that are wrapped up this weekend.
This client, I'm doing work with him on Friday, literally are going to be done like next week and they get to pretty much enjoy senior year.
Some of the kids will basically step into a little bit of senioritis.
I mean to be honest. I tell them "Hey, like you don't have to work so hard just relax a bit."
Because they're already done with everything and there's nothing that feels better in my opinion.
We can cross something off your to-do-list.
My to-do list is typically 50 tasks a day. We get over 500 e-mails just into my inbox. I practically get like an email every 10 minutes, and so that's just me not having people on my team. So it's really about being able to process off what we're doing. Making sure we're helping as many families as we can and really make sure that you're getting the help you need.
You know first of all Florida is one of my favorite places to go. It's absolutely beautiful of course. The families out there are just amazing.
They are hardworking families, that you know the parents really care about their child, and they want the best for their kids.
You know their kid has done so much work.
I mean so much work from an academic standpoint.
You know trying to get through the classes, the extracurricular activities, like lots of commitment. Great summer activities, but they really want someone to put the bow and make it perfect to me in the end.
Really bring in that level of expertise that they don't have.
I think it's fascinating if you look at.
Please comment guys. I love when you guys communicate.
You know this morning I was at my sister's, also a fellow entrepreneur in her own ventures. We were talking a lot about some things that she's dealing with. I said to her "You know look, I've done X, Y and Z for over 12 months. You know people are going to tell YOU to do this, and that, and the other, and give you the ideas and put them in your head. That may not be the most effective information." I'm just telling you based on data. Like just real data like what's the likelihood of you participating in that activity. What that's going to look like for you. If you're willing to do that then go for it. I've already done it. I've already done it. So it’s up to you if you want to follow it. I love doing that because I think so many times people just think that "Okay, well this is a great idea. I'll run with it or I'll do this or that."
The thing about it is, it's not always the best advice. I mean it's really painful to watch.
Yesterday in Voice of Asia we were called the Queen of College Consulting. I think this is very appropriate today.
I just wanted to reach out to you guys. I know it's the end of the week and so many of you guys are on the fence through thinking about things.
I just wanted to offer little insiders secret - we've gotten hundreds of calls, so there are a lot of parents out of that 3.3 million that are taking action getting the help they need.
If you're on the fence and you aren't calling us, We're actually at 95% capacity.
I'm really proud to say that because we're not working with 3.3 million kids. We're only working with a select handful of kids that we believe are a great fit for us as well and that are willing to really make sure their dreams are on their to-do-list too. So we're already at 95% capacity for this year and for next year.
It's really quite remarkable because I've chosen to only work with a handful of people on my team.
To make sure that the kids are really getting the help that they need in the process, because I really don't want it to be where you know we just expand and we're taking care of the kids. We basically feel like a high school counseling office is just like not what I want.
I'm really excited to say that you know we're very selective and we want to make sure that we're working with the best kids possible. Also that you know we just get booked and we work with kids that really understand how it works and then same for next year.
So just wanted to shoot a quick video. Super excited to have each and every one of you guys on listening and learning more. I hope you guys have an amazing amazing weekend.
You know I know that so many of you are really trying to figure out this process and sometimes it can be very overwhelming for a lot of people and I get that.
I just want to make sure that you guys are definitely taken care of and you're getting your questions answered.
Anytime you guys have questions please message us up above because we love to answer any messages you have.
This week has been quite remarkable.