Frequently Asked Questions

How do you decide which colleges or graduate schools to recommend?2024-03-19T12:59:54-04:00

Matching students to the very best schools for their unique personality and educational goals is one of the hallmarks of Collegiate Gateway’s services. This is why we constantly visit and re-visit colleges and graduate programs throughout the world and meet with admissions staff, faculty, and students to learn everything there is to know about each school. Our success in identifying schools where our clients will thrive academically and personally is reflected in the extremely low rate of transfers among our clients – less than 1% compared with the national average of 25%.

School rankings can certainly be useful in providing generalized comparative statistical data on schools. However, the rankings are based on a multitude of factors that may have little bearing on whether a particular student will have a happy and successful experience at a given school.

Rather, the ideal schools are those that offer the greatest fit in terms of the student’s unique strengths, preferences, personality, interests, and goals. Determining this fit is a complex process that requires a full understanding of the student as well as the intangible qualities of each college’s cultural and academic life.

How early should students begin working with an independent counselor?2024-03-19T12:59:06-04:00

In today’s competitive admissions landscape, we believe the most successful applications require proactive and early planning long before you hit send.

For college applicants, the ideal time to begin working with Collegiate Gateway is in freshman or sophomore year of high school. Many of the factors that influence admissions decisions unfold      throughout the high school years, from course selection to extracurriculars to teacher relationships. We help students make the most of these years to best position themselves for success when it comes time to craft their experience into the college application itself.

The same applies for graduate school applicants, who gain maximum benefit when they begin the consulting relationship during their early college years. Collegiate Gateway helps college students plan a four-year curriculum sequence that best fulfills their distribution requirements, major, minor, and pre-professional courses. In addition, we advise on extracurricular activities, research, internships, and employment that will best position our clients to be competitive for their particular degree program.

What are Collegiate Gateway’s professional credentials?2024-03-19T12:57:58-04:00

Collegiate Gateway founder Julie Raynor Gross has achieved a leadership position in her field.  She is a Professional Member of:

  • AIGAC (Association for International Graduate Admissions Counselors)
  • HECA (Higher Education Consultants Association)
  • IECA (Independent Educational Consultants Association) – served as Chair of the Graduate School Professional Liaison Committee and Chair of the College Committee
  • NAAHP (National Association of Advisors to the Healthcare Professions)
  • NACAC (National Association of College Admissions Counselors)
  • NCDA (National Career Development Association)

She received certification from the Harvard Summer Institute on College Admissions, is a Master Practitioner of the Myers Briggs Type Indicator and a Certified Practitioner of the Strong Interest Inventory.

Julie is recognized nationally as an expert on college and graduate admissions and is featured regularly on television, in print, and at industry conferences to provide insights into the current state of the admissions landscape.

Why is a private college consultant useful in addition to the high school guidance counselor?2024-03-19T12:56:52-04:00

For high school students, the guidance counselor plays a valuable role as a liaison between the student’s secondary school and colleges. In addition, through their recommendation, they position each student within the context of their entire high school class. School counselors, however, often have caseloads of hundreds of students and therefore have limited time and resources to devote to each student or visit colleges.

Collegiate Gateway complements the role of a school counselor by providing a high level of individualized attention and care to each student and family. We gain thorough knowledge of our clients’ unique background and goals in order to identify their ideal colleges and provide a custom-tailored path to success.

In addition, we provide a huge amount of accessibility outside of school hours, whether in the evenings or on weekends – through the convenience of video and in-person consultations, email, and phone calls.

Why do students and families choose to work with an independent consultant like Collegiate Gateway for college admissions?2024-03-19T13:06:38-04:00

For both students and families, an independent admissions consultant can provide invaluable      guidance to improve the likelihood of a successful outcome – acceptance to a college that best matches a student’s individual academic and personal needs. Collegiate Gateway is a Professional Member of NACAC (National Association for College Admission Counseling), IECA (Independent Educational Consultants Association), and HECA (Higher Education Consultants Association), which means we have been fully vetted and demonstrate the highest standards in education, training, ethics, and experience.

An independent consulting practice like Collegiate Gateway has specialized, comprehensive knowledge on the full range of college options. We have visited hundreds of colleges and universities around the world and met with admissions officers, faculty, and students in order to stay on the cutting edge of the latest developments in the admissions process. We provide specific expertise on the college landscape to help clients identify the very best schools for their needs and then maximize their odds of admissions success.

The college admissions process doesn’t just impact the student who is applying, it’s often an      intensive period of time that affects the whole family. We bring the entire family into the process, providing a positive and focused environment for students and their parents to make these important life decisions together.

Finally, Collegiate Gateway can reduce stress by keeping students organized and motivated with the application and interview deadlines, so that the process remains manageable and even enjoyable!

Why do students and families choose to work with an independent consultant like Collegiate Gateway for graduate admissions?2024-03-19T13:07:04-04:00

The graduate school admissions landscape is highly competitive, whether you’re applying for a master’s or doctoral program, medical school, law school, or business school. An independent consultant like Collegiate Gateway brings years of expertise in guiding grad school applicants through the multitude of decisions on the path to a successful admissions outcome – from college course selection to standardized testing to post-grad employment and interview preparation.

Collegiate Gateway is a Professional Member of leading industry associations like NAAHP (National Association of Advisors to the Healthcare Professions), AIGAC (Association of International Graduate Admissions Consultants), and NCDA (National Career Development Association), which means we have been fully vetted and demonstrate the highest standards in education, training, ethics, and experience.

When it comes to graduate school, each type of application, and in many cases each individual school, has its own particular criteria and standards for excellence.      Collegiate Gateway brings to bear a thorough understanding of the requirements of each program, in order to help you craft a compelling, focused narrative to position yourself against a crowded field.

Just like college admissions, the most important aspect of the grad school admissions process is helping students identify the schools that are the very best fit for their individual background and goals. Collegiate Gateway has comprehensive knowledge of the full range of grad school options to guide these decisions. Just as importantly, we get to know each client as deeply as possible in order to develop a list that’s highly customized to your needs.

Lastly, an independent consultant like Collegiate Gateway can reduce your stress by providing an organizational framework to prioritize and meet all deadlines and stay motivated throughout the process. For any graduate school applicant, working with Collegiate Gateway provides the peace of mind that you’re doing everything possible to maximize your odds of success.

What kinds of consulting packages does Collegiate Gateway offer?2024-03-19T13:07:51-04:00

Collegiate Gateway offers a wide variety of college and graduate school admissions packages to suit all different needs. These range from comprehensive packages encompassing all aspects of admissions planning and applications, to hourly packages for more targeted assistance with specific aspects of the process.

A complimentary half-hour consultation can help students and parents explore which consulting services and packages best suit your needs. We would love to hear from you and learn how we can help you!

Do you work with students who participate in Science Research programs?2024-03-19T13:08:18-04:00

One of our specialties at Collegiate Gateway is working with high school students involved in their school’s math, science, or social science research programs. We help guide students through all aspects of their research projects – from identifying topics of interest to finding research mentors to reviewing research presentations – culminating in national science competitions like the Regeneron Science Talent Search and ISEF (International Science and Engineering Fair).

Do you work remotely or just in New York?2024-03-19T13:08:41-04:00

All of our meetings and services can be conducted remotely via videochat or telephone! We are proud to work with clients in countries all over the world, including Canada, China, Colombia, Denmark, England, and Singapore.

How does Collegiate Gateway help students prepare for college interviews?2024-03-19T13:09:02-04:00

Although a few colleges no longer provide on-campus interviews, most colleges still offer the opportunity for alumni interviews. As the college admissions process has become more selective, every factor plays a role in the final decision and provides a valuable opportunity to strengthen your candidacy.

We have extensive experience in conducting real alumni interviews and understand the factors that contribute to favorable outcomes.  We conduct mock interviews with our students in a professional setting that replicates actual admissions interviews, and we provide valuable feedback on how students can improve the genuine presentation of their background and strengths. For medical school applicants, we provide mock interviews for both the traditional interview and for the newer MMI (Multiple Mini-Interview).

What role does Collegiate Gateway play in the writing of application essays?2024-03-19T13:09:27-04:00

The most successful personal essays are those that provide an honest, authentic window into the student’s life experience and unique perspective on the world. To that end, our goal is to help students dig deep to craft essays that are the truest and most powerful representation of themselves. We do not try to conform essays into a prescribed mold, and we do not write essays for students. Rather, we help our students strengthen their own writing ability, self-reflection, and communication to write essays that truly shine.

One of the keys to an exceptional essay is choosing the perfect topic to showcase each student’s unique gifts and personality. We are skilled at helping our clients brainstorm potential topics, based on our comprehensive understanding of their background, strengths and interests.  We review drafts of essays and offer detailed suggestions for improvement to help each student achieve the best possible final product.

We also review all other supplementary material submitted with applications, including resumes of extracurricular activities, community service, employment, and honors, to ensure that students are presenting their background as effectively as possible.  The objective is to assist students in identifying and expressing their distinctive strengths, characteristics, perspectives, and life experiences, so that their personality shines through in all their writing.

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