Schools Recently Updated for the 2016/2017 Application Season

Below is a list of all the schools that have been updated so far in College Essay Organizer for the 2016-2017 application season.

  1. Colgate University
  2. Georgetown University
  3. Georgia Institute of Technology
  4. University of California-Berkeley
  5. University of California-Davis
  6. University of California-Irvine
  7. University of California-Los Angeles
  8. University of California-Merced
  9. University of California-Riverside
  10. University of California-San Diego
  11. University of California-Santa Barbara
  12. University of California-Santa Cruz
  13. University of Chicago
  14. University of Florida
  15. University of Michigan-Ann Arbor
  16. University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

Only a few colleges post their new questions this early. Most colleges will update in July/August, and we'll be right on top of them all for you. We will also be updating many colleges before the Common App goes live Aug 1.

Make sure to Like us on Facebook and Follow us on Twitter to get our daily  updates and special posts.
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Join Our Webinar To Kick Off The 2016/2017 Season

This webinar is for both newcomers who can learn all about the longest-running and most popular college essay web tool on the market and veterans who can discover all the newest upgrades in response to IEC feedback.

For members using us directly through College Essay Organizer:
Monday, June 13 @ 1pm ET -- Click here to register now

For members using us through College Planner Pro:
Tuesday, June 14 @ 1pm ET -- Click here to register now

(Recordings can be emailed to you upon request if you can't tune in live)

Bonus: All attendees will be eligible for our free accounts giveaway!

What's new this season?

Use our new master account interface (now available through CPP, too) so you can access all your clients' essay reports and alerts on one page, getting a quick snapshot of everyone's status
Set up alerts to be emailed to any counselor you want so students can edit drafts with whomever
Track alerts more easily with student and counselor names visible in email subject lines
Customize each student's RoadMap with more essay topic options so that you control everyone's writing plans
Remove schools on your own from a student's RoadMap so you don't need to look at dropped colleges anymore
Keep track of tasks and notes for each student with our new To Do List and Scratchpad features
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Get started now

Most IECs have already started using College Essay Organizer for this year so get organized now before summer begins:

Existing members using us directly -- start here

New members using us directly -- start here

CollegePlannerPro members can email us directly to order in bulk -- you'll save money this way! (simply tell us how many student accounts you want)

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Gap Years are Increasing in Popularity

gap yearAs high school seniors get ready to head off to college next year, there is another option that is slowly growing in popularity. Parents aren't always on board with the idea, worrying if college will be put off forever, but for some grads, a year off from school is a good idea.

According to Kevin Doran, "Gap years can involve meaningful work, community service, specialized study or travel. Students can plan it themselves or be part of an organized program; some even pay expenses." There are definitely lots of opportunities for growth, with a growing number of resources available. Visit the below websites for more information, as well as this article:

AFS Intercultural Programs

City Year

Dynamy

Nacel

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End of Year Tip for Seniors

calmAs the school year winds down, it's tempting for students to become less focused, especially seniors who have already been accepted to college. However, every year, colleges revoke a small percentage of acceptances to admitted students whose grades have noticeably slipped or who have experienced disciplinary actions.

According to Paul Seegert, admissions director at the University of Washington, 10 to 20 acceptance letters are revoked each year, and although a student can appeal the decision, the results are almost always the same.

To read more about how senior missteps can result in the loss of an acceptance, click here.

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Swing by our IECA booth to see our newest upgrades!

Boston-logo-2016We are looking forward to seeing all of you at the IECA conference in Boston this week. Please visit our table and say hello. One lucky member will win 5 FREE student accounts just for stopping by!

As always, we'll be answering any questions, providing private demos, and showcasing new upgrades like the following:

  • Use our new master account interface through CollegePlannerPro so you can access all your clients' essay reports and alerts on one page, getting a snapshot of everyone's status
  • Set up alerts to be emailed to any counselor you want so students can edit drafts with whomever
  • Track alerts more easily with student and counselor names visible in email subject lines
  • Customize each student's RoadMap with more essay topic options so that you control all writing plans
  • Remove schools on your own from a student's RoadMap so you don't need to look at dropped colleges anymore
  • Keep track of tasks and notes for each student with our new To Do List and Scratchpad features

If you won't be in Boston, just look for our emails inviting you to our webinars starting in late May and running all summer.

Our team of dedicated researchers is extremely proud to have provided you with a 100% error-free college essay experience last season, and we look forward to delivering even faster, better service this season.

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Coalition Essay Question Released for 2016-2017 Season

coalitionThe Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success is set to launch its application in July, but the recommended essay prompts for the 2016-2017 season have already been released, though colleges can choose to not require an essay or offer alternate options. So far, a word limit has not been announced.

  • Tell a story from your life, describing an experience that either demonstrates your character or helped to shape it.
  • Describe a time when you made a meaningful contribution to others in which the greater good was your focus. Discuss the challenges and rewards of making your contribution.
  • Has there been a time when you’ve had a long-cherished or accepted belief challenged? How did you respond? How did the challenge affect your beliefs?
  • What is the hardest part of being a teenager now? What’s the best part? What advice would you give a younger sibling or friend (assuming they would listen to you)?
  • Submit an essay on a topic of your choice.

Although the questions have been released, many other details, including which schools will be using the application, are still up in the air. Of its 93 members, 60 are saying that they are not planning to use the application this season, and it remains to be seen how dependable the technology will be when presented. For more details, click here.

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Figuring Out Financial Aid Offers

fin aidThe tables have finally turned. Now that students have been notified by colleges as to where they've gotten in, it's their turn to make the decisions. And for the students to whom money matters, financial aid offers add another layer of complexity. Here are a few tips published by consumerreports.org to help figure out those financial aid offers:

  • Make sure you understand the total amount you'll receive. Pay attention to the figure "total cost of attendance," but not all schools handle this number the same way. Some figures include tuition, fees, room and board, while others include additional costs such as books, activities and living expenses.
  • Think about the type of loan you will need. You can opt for a Direct loan or a Perkins loan, and they can be subsidized or unsubsidized. Make sure to research which ones best suit your needs.
  • Find out if work-study programs are available. Work-study programs can be extremely helpful in making ends meet, and they are usually offered on campus.
  • Make sure that your offer will continue for four years. Schools often supply a financial figure for the first year of college. Be sure to find out what you are guaranteed throughout your four years.
  • Financial aid offers are not written in stone. You can always appeal an offer with the schools' financial aid office. This is especially true when you have a more generous alternate offer.
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Bringing Levity to the College Admissions Process

stanfordStudents are gearing up to hear from the remainder of their colleges over the next couple weeks, which always makes for a tense time for anyone involved in the application process. And we all know how admissions statistics have been going down every year with some top schools admitting less than 6% of applicants. Bearing that in mind, and keeping sight of the absurdity of it all (keep rolling with the punches, and you will find a school that's right for you!), it's refreshing to see today's article in the New York Times poking fun at the process:

"PALO ALTO, California — Cementing its standing as the most selective institution of higher education in the country, Stanford University announced this week that it had once again received a record-setting number of applications and that its acceptance rate — which had dropped to a previously uncharted low of 5 percent last year — plummeted all the way to its inevitable conclusion of 0 percent.

With no one admitted to the class of 2020, Stanford is assured that no other school can match its desirability in the near future."

To read the rest of the article, and have a needed laugh in the process, click here.

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University of California Schools Changing Their Essay Questions for 2016-2017 Season

uc schoolsUniversity of California schools have shared one application with the same essay questions for several years. However, this year it has been announced that the old, familiar prompts will be replaced by more personalized questions designed to elicit more relevant information. Fortunately, the schools still want students to have the opportunity to work on their essay questions early, so they have been released! Please find the new essay questions below, and click here to find out more information.

There are 8 essay question options, 4 of which applicants must respond to, and all are of equal importance in the admissions process. Each response is limited to a maximum of 350 words.

1. Describe an example of your leadership experience in which you have positively influenced others, helped resolve disputes, or contributed to group efforts over time.
2. Every person has a creative side, and it can be expressed in many ways: problem solving, original and innovative thinking, and artistically, to name a few. Describe how you express your creative side.
3. What would you say is your greatest talent or skill? How have you developed and demonstrated that talent over time?
4. Describe how you have taken advantage of a significant educational opportunity or worked to overcome an educational barrier you have faced.
5. Describe the most significant challenge you have faced and the steps you have taken to overcome this challenge. How has this challenge affected your academic achievement?
6. Describe your favorite academic subject and explain how it has influenced you.
7. What have you done to make your school or your community a better place?
8. What is the one thing that you think sets you apart from other candidates applying to the University of California?

 

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Fun Contest -- Seniors can win MONEY

moneyWe know how hard you worked on your college applications! Now is your chance to relive your acceptance letter euphoria and maybe even win some money.

We invite you to enter our new "I Got In!" Contest.

Simply send an email by May 15 to info@CollegeEssayOrganizer.com with your best "I Got In!"moment (either photo, video, or written story), and we will alert you if you're among our cash winners. Entries will not be shared without permission.

1st place = $200
2nd place = $150
3rd place = $100
4 honorable mentions = $25 each

5 SIMPLE RULES:

  1. Only one submission per person
  2. Written entries must be under 150 words
  3. Submission must be received by May 15
  4. Write "Contest" in the subject line
  5. You must have applied to college this past year (2015-2016)

TIP: we like risky, creative, compelling, and ones that make us smile ... like this one!

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