Of course every case is tailored to your student's specific needs, but here at BTA Education we feel you should know a little about what we can do for you if you chose to utilize our services. Below is a general outline of our process when we take on college consulting clients. We designed our five-stage process so that both student and parent can leave our office feeling more comfortable about tackling the wonderful opportunity we call college!
Our 5 Steps to Surviving the College Process
We work with students and families through a five-stage process.
STEP 1: Develop the list of best fit colleges. During this stage, we work together with you and your student to find the schools that match your goals. Many companies charge for this first meeting, but we believe you have the right to get to know us and our process before you commit to payment - so this initial consultation is FREE to you.
- We meet with you and your student several times to understand your student's personal interests and strengths
- We discuss your student's disability and the types of support available at the college level.
- We evaluate his or her academic profile.
- We build a timeline for the entire college process, including time for school visits, test dates, and application deadlines.
- We prepare a preliminary list of colleges for you and your student to research and/or visit.
- We coach you on what to look for and questions to ask during your visits.
- You and your student evaluate and visit the colleges on the list and provide positive and negative feedback on each.
- We refine your list, adding and subtracting schools based on your feedback.
- We monitor your progress to be sure you’ve completed visits in time to start the application process.
- At the end of this stage, you have a list of schools that fit your student's personal and academic profile.
STEP 2: Assist with the application process. While your student always completes his own applications and writes her responses, we help with the process.
- We go over the application requirements from each school with your student, including the online Common App.
- We help your student strategize responses, particularly to the short answer questions and the personal statement (essay).
- We provide guidance as your student revises and completes their applications.
- We monitor their progress to be sure all deadlines are met, and we intervene if necessary.
- The result of this stage is a set of completed, submitted applications.
STEP 3: Financial aid and acceptance. Many times this is the most stressful part of the process, but it doesn’t need to be.
- We go over all forms of aid, including merit and need-based scholarships, loans, and other options.
- We coach you on completing the FAFSA, as well as finding and applying for scholarships.
- If you need advice on your own finances, we can refer you to financial planning professionals who specialize in financial aid.
- As you begin to receive acceptance letters, we help you evaluate your choices so that you can make your final decision.
STEP 4: Securing supports. College is very different from high school; unless your student is going to a college with a specific academic program to support their disability, the burden is on them to identify their disability, secure supports, and ensure those supports are provided. We'll work with you, your student, and their chosen college before their first semester to ensure they can access the supports they need.
STEP 5: First semester support. Many consultants’ services end once you select a school, but our job isn’t done until your child is settled and happy in the college of his/her choice. Statistics overwhelmingly confirm that students who are successful in their first semester are more likely to have a successful college career. For students with disabilities, the successful transition to a new set of supports is also critical. We’re there during that first semester to help in any way we can, from navigating the services available on campus to providing an experienced perspective on any concerns you or your child might have.
To Learn More
To learn more about working with a college consultant or about the college process, contact us or click on the links below.
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