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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I get started with Magna College Consulting?

You can start by filling out our contact form. As long as we have availability for your student’s graduating year, we will arrange a complimentary one-hour consultation where we will discuss the college admissions process and our services. We offer both comprehensive and hourly services and will help you determine what makes the most sense for your student and their individual needs.

Why should your student work with us?

Unlike many other college counselors who focus on admissions for a specific category of colleges, our goal is to find the best college fit for each student we work with. We want them to thrive the moment they arrive on campus as a freshman! While we have a proven track record with student admissions at the most selective colleges, we work with a broad range of clients, each with their own academic capability and life experience. We customize an application strategy for each student based on multiple factors that are teased out and explored through intensive, one-on-one conversations. In addition to our strong admissions credentials:

  • We are known for our high-energy, high-quality team that students love to work with.
  • Our approach guides students through open-ended self-exploration to help them identify and then write about their future academic and personal goals. The result is a thoughtful and cohesive application that tells your student’s unique story. We ask questions, get to know them, and become their biggest cheerleaders!
  • We limit the number of students we take each year to provide the highest level of individualized attention. We collaborate as a team to ensure that more than one counselor has read and offered feedback on each application a student submits. Our mission is to give each student and family a personalized, high-service experience.
  • We take the stress for parents out of the college application process! Our organizational platform, developed over many years working one-on-one with high school students, produces high-quality work using deadline-driven assignments. We require our students to submit all applications before deadlines to avoid last-minute panic.

Why do we need to hire a college consultant if our high school has a college counseling office?

We encourage all of our students to develop and maintain a strong and collaborative relationship with their high school counselors. We do not consider ourselves to be replacements for a student’s school counselors. However, we recognize that some families want the one-on-one attention we can provide as well as the highly personalized services we offer. Magna College Consulting takes the time to get to know each student and family so we can create a complete college admissions plan and identify schools that best match that student’s needs and interests. We specialize in application management, including a master deadline schedule, with automatic reminders and an organizational platform that consolidates all application material and information.

When do you start working with students?

We meet students at any point along their college journey. Ideally, we suggest meeting students early in their high school career to help guide individualized curricular choices, extracurricular activities, summer opportunities, standardized testing, teacher rapport, and essay development.

Do you help students with their college essays?

Using a highly individualized approach, we work with students to communicate their unique, authentic stories and voice. We will not write essays for the students, but we will support their efforts, from brainstorming compelling topics to proofreading the final product.

I thought students start writing their college applications senior year. Why should I consider hiring Magna College Consulting earlier?

Students who start thinking about their personal narratives earlier in high school have more options to shape and enrich their applications. This means being intentional about your choice of classes and extracurriculars. We believe that every experience and accolade enrich your student’s story. The counselors at Magna College Consulting can help you plan your high school road map in a way that is authentic and leverages your student’s interests and skills. Students should be able to do what they enjoy while showing colleges that are strong candidates for admission. We offer resources and advice on identifying and applying to summer programs that can augment their personal story and provide unique opportunities to learn and grow.

Do you only work with students with a certain GPA or academic qualifications?

No. Our students’ GPAs range from a 2.5 to a 4.5 and everything in between.  There are many, many schools to choose from and we strive to build a unique list of colleges that will include institutions that will challenge your students and also cater to their needs. This may include:

  • Academic support including services for students with learning differences
  • Honors programs for academically exceptional students
  • Pre-orientation programs and ongoing support to raise the level of comfort for international students

Will my student be working with a group of counselors?

No. Your student will work with one of us for the entire application process.  Internally, we are a collaborative team. Each of us builds our own deep relationships with our students but shares our knowledge with each other to provide the best possible service and industry knowledge.

Do you work with transfer students?

Yes! We work with students wishing to transfer after their first or second year of college. We can work with applicants to develop a list of schools that will fulfill the criteria of what they are looking for in a transfer and help students with their transfer applications.

Do you work with international students?

Yes, we work with students from around the globe to address their unique needs.

Is it too late to hire you if I am already a senior?

No! Application deadlines vary from school to school so don’t panic! We can still help you submit your best possible application regardless of where you are in the process.

What do holistic college admissions look like?

  • A school with a holistic admissions policy considers the whole applicant, not just numerical measures such as grades and test scores.
  • The rigor of coursework, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation, demonstrated interest, intellectual curiosity, personal qualities, and college interviews all play a role in holistic admissions.
  • Good grades and standardized test scores are still extremely important at schools with holistic admissions.

According to the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA), what factors should you consider when hiring an Independent Educational Consultant (IEC)?

  1. IECs should not guarantee admission to any school or a minimum scholarship value.
  2. The college consultant you hire should keep up with current trends, academic changes, and evolving campus culture. At Magna College Consulting, we attend 2 conferences, visit a minimum of 30 campuses a year, and meet with admissions representatives.
  3. The college consultant you hire should belong to recognized professional associations. At Magna, we belong to the Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA), the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA), the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) and Western Association for College Admission Counseling (WACAC). We regularly attend professional conferences and training workshops to keep abreast of regional and national trends.
  4. College consultants should not accept any form of compensation from a school, program, or company in exchange for placement or a referral. At Magna, we absolutely do not!
  5. Fees for college consulting services are stated in writing, upfront. After a complimentary one-hour consultation, we will send you the Magna contract which details our entire menu of services.
  6. College consultants should never complete the application for admission, rewrite essays, or fill out financial aid forms on the behalf of a student. At Magna College Consulting, we strongly adhere to IECA-recommended ethical standards of conduct. We believe it is essential for students to be in charge of the process and that all materials submitted to colleges be the student’s own, best work.

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