A blog about college, admissions practices, financial aid procedures, and more!

A Poor College Match Can be Costly

Tuesday, February 02, 2016
According to the November 16, 2015 ECampus News, 50% of college freshmen do not graduate, and 30-40% transfer from the institution they attend as freshmen.  These outcomes are largely attributed to a poor fit between the student and the college.

"Selecting a new college or a transfer college is often an arbitrary process that’s often based on geographic location, availability of specific majors, a family attachment to a particular institution, or even a favorite collegiate sports team. And while transfer students already have a “taste” of what college is like – and are equipped with more information than the typical high school senior – unless they are proactive about seeking help, most receive very little support in this area.

As a result, students are largely left to their own devices and expected to “figure things out” on their own. The problem is that while 75 percent of students are consistently accepted into their first-choice university, only one-in-two college freshman ultimately graduate."

An objective, experienced Independent Educational Consultant like me can be of great value here.  I gather critical information from parents, students, and schools and use that information to make a list of suggested schools at which the student is most likely to thrive.  The process is an art since there are many hard-to-measure factors to prioritize and weight before getting the stars to align. The process also includes moving targets, so as additional information becomes available - such as new standardized test scores or a music award - and as the applicant and colleges grow and change, the list of "right-fit" colleges for that applicant may change, too.  

Making a good match relies on my up-to-date understanding of the strengths, weaknesses, and cultures of colleges and universities, the talents and desires of the applicant, and the admission process at each school.  It's complicated, but it is an essential part of a well-oiled college search process.