Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education US College Rankings 2021

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The Wall Street Journal/Times Higher Education College Ranking 2021 was just released.  Harvard is number one again (Harvard Produces Wealthy Alumni)!  All of the Ivy League universities are among the top 15 schools. With their rarefied, global social alumni networks, door-opening reputations, prestige and superior academics, it isn’t surprising that the schools mentioned are all brand-name institutions.

 The rankings emphasize how well a college will prepare students for life after graduation.  The overall ranking is based on 15 factors across four areas:  Outcomes, Resources, Engagement and Environment.   Each school’s overall score is determined by student outcomes (including a measure of graduate salaries), the school’s academic resources, how well it engages students and from the diversity of the students and staff.  Data come from a variety of sources: the US government (Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System – IPEDS), the College Scorecard, the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), the THE US Student Survey, the THE Academic Survey, and the Elsevier bibliometric dataset.

My team and I personally visit top colleges three times annually to understand each of their ever changing and unique admissions policies as well as the campus environment.   As a result, we garner and develop our proprietary knowledge to help our clients achieve admissions success. (Why Dr. Paul Lowe Visits College Campuses).  This ranking is very accurate!

The WSJ/THE College Rankings “it takes a different approach, emphasizing the return on investment students see after they graduate. Schools that fare the best on this list have graduates who generally are satisfied with their educational experience and land relatively high-paying jobs that can help them pay down student loans.”  These two factors are clearly why our clients retain us as admissions advisors who specialize in Ivy League admissions:  Ivy League Admissions Advisors and seek the personalized superior admissions advice from Dr. Paul Lowe.

Here is a list of THE TOP TWENTY:

1.  Harvard University (Dr. Lowe Visits Harvard) | (Harvard University Produces Wealthy Alumni)

2.  Massachusetts Institute of Technology 

3.  Yale University 

4.  Stanford University

5.  Brown University, Duke University

7.  Princeton University, California Institute of Technology

9. Cornell University

10.  Northwestern University

12.  Dartmouth College

13.  University of Pennsylvania

14.  University of Chicago

15.  Columbia University, Rice University

17.  Vanderbilt University

18.  Washington University in St. Louis

19.  University of Southern California

20.  Carnegie Mellon University

Parents and students often use ranking as a resource and reference.  Why would you have college rankings if it doesn’t really matter? Our blog: Does it Matter Where You Attend College?  Absolutely!

Our clients care about WHERE their children will attend college!

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Admissions is a competitive sport!  Why gamble with uncertainty? – Dr. Paul Lowe

We provide our clients access to our specialized knowledge! – Dr. Paul Lowe

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe, founder and managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group, provides comprehensive counseling advice, exclusively for admissions to top private schools; Ivy League and highly-selective colleges/universities; BS/MD programs; graduate and medical schools and top visual and performing arts programs.   The admissions affiliate: Ivy League Admissions Advisors specializes in admissions to Ivy League and highly selective colleges,  Dr. Lowe also specializes in helping students who have been wait-listed, deferred or rejected gain admission into their top-choice schools: College Application Rejected. and student who wish to transfer to another college:  College Transfer Admissions Advisors.

U.S. News World Report Best College Ranking: Top 20 in 2021

The 2021 U.S. New World Report Best College Ranking is out!  I often hear that it doesn’t matter where a student attends college as long as it’s a “good fit”.  Really!!!  Why are rankings used?  Why are they so important?  Because we are a consumer-based society where a college’s reputation, prestige and brand does matter!

WHERE YOU ATTEND COLLEGE MATTERS!

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Here is the list of the top 20 college/universities:

1. Princeton University

2. Harvard University (Dr. Lowe Visits Harvard) |(Harvard University Produces Wealthy Alumni)

3. Columbia University

4. Massachusetts Institute of Technology

5. Yale University

6. Stanford University

7. University of Chicago

8. University of Pennsylvania

9. California Institute of Technology

10. Johns Hopkins University

11. Northwestern University

12. Duke University

13. Dartmouth College

14. Brown University

15. Vanderbilt University

16. Rice University

17. Washington university in St. Louis

18. Cornell University

19. University of Notre Dame

20. University of California – Los Angeles

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Admissions is a competitive sport!  Why gamble with uncertainty? – Dr. Paul Lowe

We provide our clients access to our specialized knowledge! – Dr. Paul Lowe

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe, founder and managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group, provides comprehensive counseling advice, exclusively for admissions to top private schools; Ivy League and highly-selective colleges/universities; BS/MD programs; graduate and medical schools and top visual and performing arts programs.   The admissions affiliate: Ivy League Admissions Advisors specializes in admissions to Ivy League and highly selective colleges,  Dr. Lowe also specializes in helping students who have been wait-listed, deferred or rejected gain admission into their top-choice schools: College Application Rejected. and student who wish to transfer to another college:  College Transfer Admissions Advisors.

 

Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan: Northwestern HPME Program Closed for 2020

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“Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan” is a blog series created by Dr. Paul Lowe that discusses BS/MD Admissions.  With such a competitive environment and the immeasurable value and benefits of BS/MD programs, the need for an admissions game plan is ESSENTIAL.

At BS/ MD Admissions, we discern that many students and parents are clueless about what to do, when to do it, where to do it, who to contact, and why do it.  They fail to discover what they are doing that’s wrong, or they discover what they’ve been doing is wrong when it’s too late!


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Northwestern’s Honors Program in Medical Education also known as HPME has announced that it will not be taking applications in 2020!  HPME is a 7-year combined medical program that admits students simultaneously into both Northwestern University in Evanston and the Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago.

Northwestern’s HPME is one of the top direct BS/MD programs.  The program has no MCAT requirement, accepts international students and allows students to explore their passions beyond their coursework. The University has community partnerships and programs (in leadership, research, public health, global health and clinical volunteering, etc.) to support student goals.

Since HPME will not be accepting applications in 2020, the competition to gain admissions into BS/MD programs will now increase because there will be fewer programs.

Our BS/MD Admissions practice is specialized: Dr. Lowe and his team only work with parents who understand that the BS/MD admissions process is competitive, who desire help from an admissions expert and who see the value and investment in paying for expert advice through a detailed and ongoing comprehensive admissions advisory service for their child’s dream of becoming a doctor.  He also specializes in helping international students in the BS/MD process. BS/MD Admissions Advisors – 2020 Acceptances.  Parents who chose to use our services want to call their son or daughter – “Doctor” when they are seniors in high school.

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe is the managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group network.  He and his team of admissions advisors, through the admissions affiliate, BS/MD Admissions Advisors, help high school students get accepted to BS/MD programs. 

Coronavirus Effect on Back To School

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It’s Back-To-School season!  As we enter the seventh month of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on secondary education, many of our clients, private as well as public school administrators and teachers are reporting to us their potential approaches to education in the current COVID-19 environment.

Some parents are forming learning pods.  Some parents are hiring tutors to supplement online learning at schools that are fully online.  Some parents are forgoing traditional schools that will be open in favor of homeschooling. Some parents have elected to build on their lots to provide their own “private” schools with virtual classrooms

We are also seeing parents who have sent their children to suburban public schools switching to private day and boarding schools, many of which have spent the late spring and summer busily preparing new rules, procedures, and protocols, while improving HVAC systems and technology for the new term.

Many elite private day and boarding schools, with their immense resources, have adapted to the COVID-19 pandemic with online classes, or for in-person schooling, using COVID-19 specific guidelines for social distance spacing, upgrading ventilation systems and adding antibacterial film on desks, handrails and doorknobs.  Some have purchased new buildings or adapted old ones to accommodate spacing guidelines. As many are aware, private schools have seen a flurry of new interest from families who view private schools as being better equipped to provide robust instruction, given their financial resources, space and nimbleness in adapting.

According to a recent survey of members by the National Association of Independent Schools, nationwide, 40% of independent schools planned to open fully in-person this fall, 19% fully online, and 41% in a hybrid model. By contrast, most of the country’s 20 largest public districts expect to start with only remote instruction.

Regardless of the approach, as high school seniors and juniors are beginning to return to schools, it will be important for them to maintain their focus on their educational goals. When the dust settles and students are into their educational routines, high school seniors and juniors will need to consider how college admissions and their school counseling landscape has been disrupted and changed in this unfamiliar environment.  Much has changed!  It will be important to keep abreast of the changes and understand how this new environment and uncertainty applies to future educational goal.

“Admissions is a competitive sport!  Why gamble with uncertainty?” – Dr. Paul Lowe

“Parents hire us because they chose to pay an admissions expert who will help them avoid making mistakes.” – Dr. Paul Lowe

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe, founder and managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group, provides comprehensive counseling advice, exclusively for admissions to top private schools; Ivy League and highly-selective colleges/universities; BS/MD programs; graduate and medical schools and top visual and performing arts programs.  Private school admissions affiliate:  Boarding School Admissions Consultants and of Private School Admissions Advisors

Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan: College Application Essays

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“Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan” is a blog series created by Dr. Paul Lowe that discusses BS/MD Admissions.  With such a competitive environment and the immeasurable value and benefits of BS/MD programs, the need for an admissions game plan is ESSENTIAL.

At BS/ MD Admissions, we discern that many students and parents are clueless about what to do, when to do it, where to do it, who to contact, and why do it.  They fail to discover what they are doing that’s wrong, or they discover what they’ve been doing is wrong when it’s too late!


COLLEGE APPLICATION ESSAYS

When we review and perform an in-depth student profile analysis of clients’ college application-essay drafts that they submit to us, we ALWAYS find mistakes that can result in rejections!  This is unfortunate because essays can tip the scales when colleges and BS/MD programs are trying to decide between two otherwise equally qualified applicants.  We find that students (even with high GPAs, great extracurricular activities and high SAT/ACT scores and excellent “manufactured” personas) don’t put much thought into their essays.  Or when they do, they overlook key points in their essays.  These are big mistakes because essays are crucial.

Applications for competitive colleges and BS/MD Programs ask the applicant to write a reasonably significant and compelling essay (in the 500-750 words range) about what is seemingly a broad topic.  What admissions officers (there are usually two or more readers) are looking for in the essay is an insight into how well the applicant thinks, how well they can articulate a point or view, how the applicant is unique, the applicant’s emotional and cultural intelligence, what matters to the applicant, and most importantly the applicant’s character, personality and honesty.

Essays should be successfully written so that they leave a lasting positive impression on the admissions committee. When reading essays, admissions officers strive to gain a reasonably complete picture of student – strengths, achievements and aspirations as well as challenges they face and how they overcome them.  At Ivy League and highly selective schools, and especially BS/MD programs, admissions officers look at every essay from every applicant, and for students who reach the level of serious consideration, essays may end up being read multiple times.

Through our years of experience, we know that the main requirement for writing a convincing, compelling, memorable and winning essays, aside from a command of the English language, grammar, coherency, optimal tone, readability, structure and flow, is to convey who you really are.  Find your “voice”. We help our clients find their unique voice during our numerous in-depth interview questions and student profile analysis.  Your voice is that writing style that lets your admissions officers “hear” who you are.

Competitive colleges and BS/MD program also require applicants to write several corresponding supplemental essays and short answers on a variety of topics. These essays are interconnected and interrelated. A 150-character answer as well as a 250-word essay is as important as the main essay. Naturally, your essays should not be repetitive, but should present a consistent image of the applicant.  We know that a well-coordinated essay set has a synergistic effect on the admissions committee: It provides a 360-degree view of the candidate on both a professional and personal level.

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Our analogy to an essay is music:  We help you revise your lyrics using our knowledge of you, your character and activities so that the admissions officers can happily sing your songs – your essays!

Dr. Lowe and his team of admissions advisors provide advice to make your essays personable, enlightening, energetic, harmonious and memorable to admissions officers.  We suggest content improvement and help you develop admissions-effective essays. Our goal is to make our clients standout from the crowd and pass that all-important final cut! 

Our over 20 years of advisory admissions experience and long-standing professional relationships with admissions officers provide us with the tool-kit of strategies and knowledge to help our clients successfully navigate the BS/MD Admissions process in the COVID-19 landscape.

Our BS/MD Admissions practice is specialized: Dr. Lowe and his team only work with parents who understand that the BS/MD admissions process is competitive, who desire help from an admissions expert and who see the value and investment in paying for expert advice through a detailed and ongoing comprehensive admissions advisory service for their child’s dream of becoming a doctor.  He also specializes in helping international students in the BS/MD process. BS/MD Admissions Advisors – 2020 Acceptances.  Parents who chose to use our services want to call their son or daughter – “Doctor” when they are seniors in high school.

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Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe is the managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group network.  He and his team of admissions advisors, through the admissions affiliate, BS/MD Admissions Advisors, help high school students get accepted to BS/MD programs. 

 

Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan: Choosing the Best Advice

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“Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan” is a blog series created by Dr. Paul Lowe that discusses BS/MD Admissions.  With such a competitive environment and the immeasurable value and benefits of BS/MD programs, the need for an admissions game plan is ESSENTIAL.

At BS/ MD Admissions, we discern that many students and parents are clueless about what to do, when to do it, where to do it, who to contact, and why do it.  They fail to discover what they are doing that’s wrong, or they discover what they’ve been doing is wrong when it’s too late!


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When considering a BS/MD program, we advise our clients to PLANPLANPLAN, and then re-PLAN.  Early planning and goal-setting are important in the long run for admissions success!

If you’re parent of a high school student looking for BS/MD admissions guidance, you’re probably overwhelmed in finding the best and meaningful advice that increases their chances of acceptance into a BS/MD program. You can complement their years of hard work by seeking the correct advice that gets them noticed by admissions officers.

  • While high school counselors provide college counseling, based on our interaction with our clients, high school counselors do not specialize in BS/MD admissions advising nor have the school-specific knowledge of BS/MD programs.
  • Books and guides are wonderful to give you a general overview of applying to BS/MD programs. However, they are not student-specific or school-specific.  They tell about the general “how-to’s”, but these strategies are not specific to an individual student profile and character.  Furthermore, from the time of manuscript completion to publication, sometimes 1 to 3 years, the BS/ MD admissions landscape changes.  Take, for example, the COVID-19 pandemic.  This has disrupted the conventional BS/MD application process.
  • Free college-planning websites – There is a saying: “You get what you pay for!”
  • Many independent educational consultants are experts in college admissions counseling, but do not have our unparalleled knowledge of BS/MD programs and knowledge of BS/MD programs as it relates to international students and H4 students.  Additionally, as experienced BS/MD Admissions Advisors, we know and understand what it takes to be a successful BS/MD applicant.

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WHAT TO DO:  Seek an BS/MD Admissions Advisor who has had experience and expertise in admissions strategies to BS/MD programs for U.S. as well as international students.  Choose an admissions advisor, who specializes in BS/MD admissions, who is not doing it part-time, who understands the medical school journey and or is a BS/MD graduate and who has admissions success.

OUR GAME PLAN STRATEGY: We have dedicated advisors for our BS/MD Admissions Advisory services. It’s one of the reasons that parents hire us to help them develop a strategic admissions plan to increase their child’s chances of acceptance. Our dedicated medical-school-specific knowledge and expertise WORKS!

With a lot at stake, in a short period of time, in such a competitive environment, BS/MD applicants need a winning BS/MD Admissions Game Plan that works in the COVID-19 environment.

Our over 20 years of admissions advisory experience and proprietary admissions strategies provides the basis for our methods and knowledge to help our clients successfully navigate the BS/MD Admissions process in any and all environments, including the COVID-19 landscape.

Our BS/MD Admissions practice is specialized: Dr. Lowe and his team only work with parents who understand that the BS/MD admissions process is competitive, who desire help from an admissions expert and who see the value and investment in paying for expert advice through a detailed and ongoing comprehensive admissions advisory service for their child’s dream of becoming a doctor.  He also specializes in helping international students in the BS/MD process. BS/MD Admissions Advisors – 2020 Acceptances.  Parents who chose to use our services want to call their son or daughter – “Doctor” when they are seniors in high school.

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Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe is the managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group network.  He and his team of admissions advisors, through the admissions affiliate, BS/MD Admissions Advisors, help high school students get accepted to BS/MD programs. 

Coronavirus (COVID-19): Schools Closed This Fall?

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We are currently receiving calls from parents who are receiving emails about the upcoming school agenda from their local school districts. The shift to online instruction is a predicament for many schools.   Some school districts are still figuring out whether to reopen, how they should reopen and if they should reopen. Some school districts are still in the midst of the planning stages of best practices for each grade level of education, including distance learning and online instruction.  This uncertainty has beset the over 13,000 school districts nationwide, with many pushing back start dates, planning hybrid models or deciding to go entirely online.

A recent study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association stated that school closures this past spring may have prevented 1.37 million cases of COVID-19 in the country between day 17 and day 42 of schools’ closure periods. The researchers estimated that 40,600 fewer Americans died overall during that period because schools shuttered.

Even with the possibility of some schools reopening (which, based on the current progression of COVID-19, is a low probability), many parents in our “Dr. Lowe’s Admissions Strategies” discussion groups were reluctant to have their children return to school, not only for the safety of their children, but also because of the risks of dissemination to other demographic groups.  Their concern is based on the fact that there have been reports of parents sending their children to summer camps and within weeks of attending (even with social distancing policies and strict safety and hygienic measures) there have been COVID-positive tests among attendees.  The worry is that the school environment will be an even more challenging venue to prevent COVID-19 outbreaks.

Parents are understandably concerned about the safety of their children at school amid the complexities and unknowns of COVID-19.  Several parents from different areas in the U.S. have told us that they are pooling resources for their children’s education.  They are gathering small groups of children to learn at home this fall called pandemic pods, home-school pods or learning pods in which groups of three to 10 students learn together in homes under the tutelage of the children’s parents or a hired teacher.  Other parents have formed parent pods with the intention of not sending their children to schools and conducting their own home school networks.

In terms of college counseling, parents have expressed concerns because of the shift to online education and the reduced in-person contact with high school counselors.  With college admissions dynamically changing and the effect of COVID-19 on college admissions to Ivy League and highly selective colleges and universities and BS/MD programs, our goal is to ensure students successfully navigate the college admissions process.  This can be especially more challenging for current rising juniors and seniors.  Admissions requirements have changed and many students will need more comprehensive, individualized guidance.  The new milieu created by COVID-19 will require innovative approaches to successfully navigate the new college admissions environment.

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“Admissions is a competitive sport!  Why gamble with uncertainty?” – Dr. Paul Lowe

“Parents hire us because they chose to pay an admissions expert who will help them avoid making mistakes.” – Dr. Paul Lowe

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe, founder and managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group, provides comprehensive counseling advice, exclusively for admissions to top private schools; Ivy League and highly-selective colleges/universities; BS/MD programs; graduate and medical schools and top visual and performing arts programs.   The admissions affiliate: Ivy League Admissions Advisors specializes in admissions to Ivy League and highly selective colleges,  Dr. Lowe also specializes in helping students who have been wait-listed, deferred or rejected gain admission into their top-choice schools: College Application Rejected. and student who wish to transfer to another college: College Transfer Admissions Advisors.

Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan: Extracurricular Activities

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“Your BS/MD Admissions Game Plan” is a blog series created by Dr. Paul Lowe that discusses BS/MD Admissions.  With such a competitive environment and the immeasurable value and benefits of BS/MD programs, the need for an admissions game plan is ESSENTIAL.

At BS/ MD Admissions, we discern that many students and parents are clueless about what to do, when to do it, where to do it, who to contact, and why do it.  They fail to discover what they are doing that’s wrong, or they discover what they’ve been doing is wrong when it’s too late!


EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

When considering a BS/MD program, we advise our clients to PLANPLANPLAN, and then re-PLAN.  Early planning and goal-setting are important in the long run for admissions success!

Here is what we advise our clients regarding extracurricular activities:

  • Extracurricular Activities demonstrate your passion, character and personality.
  • Extracurricular activities must be profound, meaningful and innovative.
  • Extracurricular activities must have a direct relationship with who you are.
  • Extracurricular activities must foster positive relationships and true interconnections.
  • BS/MD admissions officers are looking for highly motivated BS/MD candidates (high school seniors) who invest their time and effort in their passions, not just students who do extracurricular activities just because they might look good on college and BS/MD applications.

CORONAVIRUS EFFECT:   Even with the pandemic, the foundations for college admissions, specifically with regard to extracurricular activities, still apply and remain unchanged.  With regard to extracurricular activities: commitment, achievement, depth, impact still matter.  There are still ways to achieve the above, but it has to be unique to YOU!  You must make the most of the opportunities available to you.  You should also underscore the best activity for you that makes you stand out.  We always ask our clients: “How does an extracurricular activity apply to your unique student profile?”

Ivy League and highly selective colleges and universities, and specifically BS/MD programs, are seeking a diverse student body made up of specialists who can share their passions and achievements collaboratively.   They are not looking for the typical BS/MD candidate who has the sort of Jack-of-all-activities or have the typical fluff “BS/MD I want to be a doctor from high school” activities. Quality supersedes quantity!  The quality has to be student-specific. We encourage and guide our clients to pursue meaningful activities.

There are lots of “how-to” books and guides to getting into BS/MD programs out there but all were published pre-COVID; now their strategies are obsolete and outdated.  With a lot at stake, in a short period of time, in such a competitive environment, BS/MD applicants (and their parents) need a winning BS/MD Admissions Game Plan that works in the COVID-19 environment.

Our over 20 years of admissions advisory experience and proprietary admissions strategies provides the basis for our methods and knowledge to help our clients successfully navigate the BS/MD Admissions process in any and all environments, including the COVID-19 landscape.

Our BS/MD Admissions practice is specialized: Dr. Lowe and his team only work with parents who understand that the BS/MD admissions process is competitive, who desire help from an admissions expert and who see the value and investment in paying for expert advice through a detailed and ongoing comprehensive admissions advisory service for their child’s dream of becoming a doctor.  He also specializes in helping international students in the BS/MD process. BS/MD Admissions Advisors – 2020 Acceptances.  Parents who chose to use our services want to call their son or daughter – “Doctor” when they are seniors in high school.

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Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe is the managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group network.  He and his team of admissions advisors, through the admissions affiliate, BS/MD Admissions Advisors, help high school students get accepted to BS/MD programs. 

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Coronavirus Effect on Applying to BS/MD Programs

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Over the past month, our offices have been receiving many phone and email inquiries about BS/MD programs.  Most of these inquiries are from very anxious parents of high school juniors who have read guides or books about BS/MD programs, researched information and talked with their friends whose children are currently attending BS/MD programs.

Their children typically have this type of applicant profile: High GPA, at least 5 AP courses, high SATs (if they were able to take them), musical, artistic and/or athletic extracurricular activities, research/clinical internships, shadowing doctors, helping the poor or starting a not-for-profit organization to help the poor or traveling to a developing country to volunteer; and of course, a two-page resume!  What parents don’t understand or seem to ignore is that their children sound all the same on paper and as a result can be easily thrown in the rejection pool.

What parents are really calling me about is to find out what to do  during the COVID-19 pandemic and determine its impact on their children’s college admissions chances.  Internships, upcoming summer programs, volunteer programs, doctor shadowing and research opportunities have all been cancelled.  In several weeks, their children will be rising seniors and in the throes of the competitive college application process to Ivy League and highly selective colleges, universities and BS/MD programs.

In our recent webcast: Applying to BS/MD Programs – COVID -19,  we discussed our go-to strategies that should be used when applying to BS/MD programs in the COVID-19 pandemic landscape.  The sudden onset of these unprecedented times has brought new changes in applying to BS/MD programs.  Books and guides regarding BS/MD programs (which were published before COVID-19), although informative, do not address the how-to’s and the do’s and dont’s of applying to BS/MD programs during the pandemic.  They do not address the new variables such as lack of availability of test scores, cancellation of internships, summer programs, research projects and gaps in resumes.  Past strategies and guides do not show students how to navigate these changes and what students need to do in order to be strongly considered for these programs. In addition, high school counselors do not specialize in providing advice for BS/MD programs.

Our recent discussions with admissions officers at institutions with BS/MD programs revealed that they anticipate that BS/MD candidates’ applications and resumes will have vacuums/gaps including entire spring quarter or trimester without extracurricular activities volunteer work, sports, and scientific research in addition to new and online classroom experiences and grading systems. The consensus is that students have to be creative and innovative with these gaps and have to explain what they are doing with their time.  Admissions officers are not just looking at resume-building based on online activities.

As one admissions officer stated: “The COVID-19 crisis has reset how we will be evaluating BS/MD applicants this fall.”   Several stated that for qualified candidates they will base college and BS/MD application decisions on the information that is available to them at the time of the application. What they are looking for is an insight into how the student thinks, how they interact, and how well they can articulate a point of view under these unprecedented conditions.  BS/MD programs will be even more competitive!  Even in the COVID -19 admissions environment, BS/MD programs will NOT have a lot of trouble filling their seats.  Especially, when they guarantee admissions to medical school from high school!

With a lot at stake, in a short period of time in such a competitive environment, BS/MD applicants (and their parents) need a winning game plan that works in the COVID-19 environment.

Our over 20 years of advisory admissions experience and long-standing professional relationships with admissions officers provide us with the tool-kit of strategies and knowledge to help our clients successfully navigate the BS/MD Admissions process in the COVID-19 landscape.

Our BS/MD Admissions practice is specialized: Dr. Lowe and his team only work with parents who understand that the BS/MD admissions process is competitive, who desire help from an admissions expert and who see the value and investment in paying for expert advice through a detailed and ongoing comprehensive admissions advisory service for their child’s dream of becoming a doctor.  He also specializes in helping international students in the BS/MD process. BS/MD Admissions Advisors – 2020 AcceptancesParents who chose to use our services can now call their son or daughter – “Doctor”.

Coronavirus Effect on High School Counseling

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The Coronavirus pandemic continues to cause unprecedented changes in college admissions.  Because schools remain shuttered, high schoolers now lack the in-person help they traditionally could receive from high school counselors to meet critical admissions deadlines and requirements. This situation is exacerbating the already difficult role that school counselors face in providing adequate help with college admissions.

There are many high schoolers who have not met with their school counselors and their school counselors don’t really know them.  High school counselors in public schools spend the majority of their time on school activities unrelated to college admissions.

The National Association for College Admission Counseling’s (NACAC) 2019 State of College Admissions (using data from NACAC’s 2018–19 Counseling Trends Survey and the US Department of Education) reported: “that on average, public high school counselors spend only 19 percent of their time on college admissions counseling.  On the other hand, the counseling staff at private schools spent an average of 31 percent of their time on college counseling.  The results of NACAC’s 2018–19 Counseling Trends Survey indicated the average overall student-to-counselor ratio for public secondary schools (ending in grade 12) was 263-to-1. Data regarding the extent to which college advising is part of counselors’ job responsibilities showed the average student-to-college counselor ratio was 309-to-1. Public institutions assigned substantially more students to counselor.”

The American School Counselor Association (ASCA) recommends a maximum 250-to-1 ratio.  Most states are significantly higher than this. The most recent student-school counselor data (2018-2019) available from the U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics.  The student-to-college counselor ratio is based on both the total number of counselors who exclusively provide college counseling for students and the total number who provide college counseling among other services for students.

High school counselors are tasked with a multitude of duties.  It is a well-documented fact that public school systems burden counselors with many duties unrelated to college counseling including but not limited to, testing, scheduling, crisis counseling, social/emotional counseling, occupational counseling/job placement, etc.  Now they must do all of this without the benefit of personal contact with their students.

With the heavy workload of most high school counselors, few are able to know their students well or have the time to provide the personalized attention needed during the college admissions process.  Now add to this mix the new and unfamiliar challenges of closed schools, distance learning, cancelled standardized testing, alterations in traditional student evaluations, limited ability to visit colleges, cancelled summer activities, cancelled internships, cancelled sports, changes in extracurricular activities, etc.  Welcome to the new era of college admissions!

Many high school parents who call us are anxious over the fact that their children currently aren’t in school and they are focused very much on day-to-day living.  Some parents are aware of the differences in methods of providing education between independent schools, which provide remote active classroom interactions with student participation, as well as assignments and projects vs public schools, requiring parental home-schooling for completion of assignments.  Furthermore, they have not been planning ahead and are not keeping up to date with various changes in admissions deadlines, test cancellations and other issues that usually require multiple in-person school counselor meetings.

Given the level of uncertainty and the timing of the pandemic at a point when high school juniors are on the verge of college application planning, it’s important to understand the impact on student (and parental) planning.

Many parents are concerned with how the COVID-19 pandemic has and will affect their children’s chances of acceptance to colleges, especially to Ivy League and highly selective colleges and universities and BS/MD programs.

In our recent webinar: “Navigating the College Admissions Process: COVID-19”, many parents stated that they have a very hard time keeping up with college admissions.  Parents are frustrated, exhausted, overwhelmed and at times confused as they try to understand the competitive process, because they rely on books, algorithms and unreliable third-party advice about college admissions.  From these antiquated and outdated sources, many parents believed that they knew all there was to know about competitive college admissions.  However, they are now in new and unfamiliar territory.

Navigating this new frontier requires expert admissions advice, insight, foresight, specialized predictive analysis, research and the experience to spot pitfalls and avoid irrevocable mistakes that may result in rejections letters.

 

 

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Admissions is a competitive sport!  Why gamble with uncertainty? – Dr. Paul Lowe

We provide our clients access to our specialized knowledge! – Dr. Paul Lowe

Dr. Paul Reginald Lowe, founder and managing director of Pinnacle Educational Center Admissions Advisors Group, provides comprehensive counseling advice, exclusively for admissions to top private schools; Ivy League and highly-selective colleges/universities; BS/MD programs; graduate and medical schools and top visual and performing arts programs.   The admissions affiliate: Ivy League Admissions Advisors specializes in admissions to Ivy League and highly selective colleges,  Dr. Lowe also specializes in helping students who have been wait-listed, deferred or rejected gain admission into their top-choice schools: College Application Rejected. and student who wish to transfer to another college: College Transfer Admissions Advisors.