I met many knowledgeable and caring professionals including other IECs (Independent Educational Consultants), college presidents, college admissions representatives, vendors and authors at the HECA conference in Philadelphia last week. I toured eight college campuses, attended nine workshops and listened to leaders in the field speak about college admissions, Liberal Arts Colleges, the current and future state of higher education and the Coalition for Access and Admission in Higher Education. The conference was extremely valuable and information rich. These ten valuable take-aways offer only a glimpse of what was offered.
Ten Valuable Take-Aways from the HECA conference in Philadelphia June 2016
(- not all new information, but information that I feel is valuable for my students and families to know)
- Checking the box indicating that you are applying for financial aid in the college application can cause your application to be considered incomplete to the college until all financial firms are submitted.
- It is important that after registering for any future SAT test, students check the email associated with their College Board account. The College Board implemented a new plan in June 2016. Selected students who register for the test will receive an email stating that they are required to submit a Verification Form by a given deadline. If the form is not submitted by this deadline, College Board will cancel the student’s registration and credit the registration fee back to the credit card. Avoid the surprise of showing up for the SAT only to find that you are not actually registered. Students MUST check their email often.
- There are three different routes to the military: Service Academies, ROTC (Reserve Officers Training Corps) and OCS (Officer Candidate School) Each path has different requirements
- There is a company called New Frontiers in Learning that is full of trained professionals to help students with learning difficulties navigate the transition to college and learn to self advocate.
- HECA members as a whole are dedicated, collaborative, extremely caring and knowledgeable professionals in the field of college consulting.
- Liberal arts students are in demand: CIC Website For higher ed professionals – LiberalArtsPower For students and parents- LiberalArtsLife Can you see yourself in this environment- @smartcolleges twitterfeed
- Purpose fuels GRIT and experiencing failure is essential to building resiliency
- Colleges want to admit students who will succeed there. If there is a concern about that, some colleges give the student a chance to try it out before committing. (Passport Program- St Joseph’s University)
- Colleges and Universities have priorities in building their class each year. Their goal is to build a community of students who will help the university continue on its mission.
- Each college/university has special qualities just as each student does. The staff and faculty at those colleges really want their students to take advantage of all the school has to offer.
- A pre-med student really can actively pursue the arts in college as well. Muhlenberg College, Swarthmore College
- A women’s college can be made as coed as the student desires it to be.
- Traditions are strong on most campuses (Bryn Mawr /Haverford/ Lehigh/Lafayette)
- Engineering and business can be combined. (Lehigh IBE, Villanova SBI)
- Pass fail evaluations require exceptional knowledge of a given subject and/or field. (Swarthmore College Honors Program)
- Intellectual curiosity is very important – Haverford College
- Jesuit colleges have the mission of developing students of giving character with a strong appreciation of differences. (Villanova University, Saint Josephs University)
- Not every arts focused student needs to present a portfolio for admission. For schools that do require it, specific types of art are required and the admissions staff is there to help students through the process. (Muhlenberg College, Tyler School of Art at Temple University, University of the Arts in Philadelphia)
- There are colleges who aim to provide both admission decisions and financial aid awards to early admission applicants by December 20. (Drew University)
Sandy Aprahamian, EDNavigators LLC