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Parents' Survival Guide to College Admissions

    The college admissions process can be quite taxing upon the parents of high school juniors and seniors. Especially parents undergoing the experience for the first time with their eldest child may be overwhelmed by the required pre-planning, extensive timeline, writing of the personal statement, and even the reporting of transcripts, test scores, and academic and extracurricular activities. Furthermore, many parents are understandably concerned with the cost of the admissions process, and more importantly, the cost of college itself.

    Thus, a student’s final two years in high school can be a period of extreme stress and even tension in the household. As college admissions seem to grow increasingly competitive each year, students face much pressure at school, and their parents may also become quite anxious. However, Sibia Admissions offers the following friendly advice to help parents to survive the complexities of the college application process–not only that, they can ensure their sons and daughters thrive and get into the top colleges of their choice!

Stay Serene and Supportive

    Regardless of how caught up you feel in the entire process, remember that your child is no doubt feeling more stressed out than you are. Whether the transcript he brings home or the standardized test scores she receives in the mail are better or worse than expected–or indeed, exactly as expected–try not to overreact, in disappointment or excitement.

    Remaining as neutral as possible is perhaps the most effective way to demonstrate your support. Thus, your child can feel confident that–no matter what score is received on the AP French exam, what grade is earned in Calculus, no matter what school he or she eventually selects–your support and love are unwavering. This will be just the reassurance your child needs to sail through junior and senior years, as well as the admissions process.  

The Personal Statement IS Personal – to Your Child

    You may have a well-developed idea of what you think the topic of your child’s college admissions essay should be. Nonetheless, that’s your idea, and we are talking about your child’s personal statement.

    Parents can certainly be invaluable sounding boards to their children, as they brainstorm ideas and seek immediate and personal feedback. Simply avoid persuading your child to write about a topic about which he or she may not be as enthusiastic as you are. The admissions essay will ring false if the author is not genuinely passionate about the topic at hand.

Distinguish between Your Wants and Your Child’s Wants

    This applies to everything–not just the personal statement, but also to your child’s choice of colleges. While advising your child about potential colleges and suggesting alternate choices can be very helpful, listen carefully to what the student is seeking in a college, academically and socially. Ultimately, your child will be attending the college, not you. Although financial considerations may of course figure into this decision, your high school senior will probably be more enthusiastic and confident about applying to schools that he or she is actively interested in attending.  

Even When Worried, Refrain from Nagging

    It may be second nature to remind your child–-clean up your room, do your laundry, and write your personal statement! Unfortunately, doing so may only compound your high school senior’s stress level. He or she is most likely well aware of the impending deadlines. Furthermore, every individual’s writing style is distinct, and sitting down to formulate the best personal statement possible is no easy task. Constantly reminding your college applicant of the need to do so may only aggravate already frayed nerves, so be as patient and gently encouraging as possible.

When Working with an Admissions Consultant, Your Child Is the Primary Client

    Finally, when enlisting the help of an admissions consultant, it can often be easy for parents to dominate the working relationship with the consultant. This can be especially sensitive, as you are often the one footing bill for such services. Nonetheless, while you should certainly monitor your child’s progress with the consultant, remember that the college applicant is the primary client. Prepared to attend college within one year, your child can also establish a productive rapport with his or her admissions consultant.

Sibia Admissions provides you and your college applicant with the expert advice and editing and proofreading services of a highly qualified, personal consultant. We work closely with your child to maximize his or her chances of being accepted into the dream college(s) of his or her choice. Thus, we provide a variety of packages that are customized to meet your high school student’s specific needs and timeline. Check out our various package options here, and rest assured that the applications process will proceed more smoothly for both you and your child!