applying for college

On the latest episode of Getting In: A College Coach Conversation, host Elizabeth Heaton celebrates the historic third anniversary of our podcast by talking with her guests about summer opportunities for athletes and sports enthusiasts, appealing a financial aid award, and the complex and often mysterious outcomes of the Early Action admission process.

How Can I Take Advantage of Sports Opportunities This Summer?

Beth’s first guest, college admission expert Amy Alexander, who was a varsity college athlete and is a Master’s level swimmer today, talks with Beth about the myriad of options available for athletes and sports-lovers to pursue their passions during the summer months. She begins by emphasizing that students don’t have to be amazing athletes to take advantage of sports camps—there are camps available for all athletic abilities, and valuable lessons to be learned even if you never plan to play on a varsity college team. Amy and Beth discuss the variety of possibilities for exploring the sports world, from internships and summer jobs to volunteer opportunities and summer coursework. If sports are your thing and occupy most of your time in high school, Beth and Amy explain how you can become “well-lopsided” by taking advantage of activities that expose you to the other aspects of your sport’s world (you’ll have to tune in to learn the definition of well-lopsided!).

How to Appeal Your Financial Aid Award

Beth’s next guest, college finance expert Beth Feinberg Keenan, is on hand to give a full explanation about how to approach a college and ask for reconsideration of your financial aid award. Beth explains that you have nothing to lose by writing to a college to lay out financial circumstances that have changed or were not reflected in the financial aid application. She gives some great examples of appeals that might work (and ones that probably won’t), and provides a complete tutorial on how and when to submit your request.

Making Sense of Early Action Decisions

Beth’s last guest, college admission expert Emily Toffelmire, wraps up the show with a robust discussion of the Early Action admission cycle offered by some institutions. She and Beth agree that while outright denials during the Early Action cycle are not prevalent, many parents and students are surprised when a strong student is not admitted through Early Action, but deferred to the Regular Decision pool. What follows is an in-depth conversation from two insiders about how and why colleges use Early Action (and Early Decision) to meet enrollment and other institutional goals. Ultimately, Beth and Emily advise students to pay less attention to the acceptance rates of the different admission cycles at an institution, and more attention to the academic profile of students who are admitted in the Early Action round. It’s impossible to summarize the nuances of their discussion in one paragraph—you’ll need to tune in to learn more!

And don’t forget to tune in to our next episode, when guest host Sally Ganga will welcome her guests to explore summer volunteer opportunities, scholarship negotiation, and trends our educators are seeing in the early admission rounds this year.

Getting-In-CTA

Written by Kathy Ruby
Kathy Ruby is a member of College Coach’s team of college finance experts. Before joining College Coach, Kathy was as a Senior Financial Aid Officer at St. Olaf College and Shippensburg University of Pennsylvania.