Regardless of whether we start working with your student in 8th grade, in 12th grade, or anywhere in between, at Princeton College Consulting, our goal is to help your student maximize his/her potential, become a deeper thinker, and more self-aware while helping your student position themselves to maximize their probability of admission to their top choice colleges.
As your student moves through high school, and in particular, the college admissions process, our expert college admissions counselors deliver ongoing one-on-one tailored guidance that augments the support your student will receive from their school counselor. Your private counselor will work with your student to: determine their academic areas of interest; recommend, help develop, and evaluate extracurricular activities; develop a balanced strategic list of colleges that will be a great fit and where your student will be set up for long term success; help your student become a better writer while helping to brainstorm, review, and edit essays; help your student develop an activities list; help prepare for interviews; and work on all facets of your student’s application process.
At Princeton College Consulting, we work with families providing ongoing guidance through the entire college application’s process as we work to help your student craft their story that will demonstrate their character and who they are in the best possible way.
For those students who have opted into one of our Comprehensive or Elite packages, students meet with their counselor on the following schedule: in Grades 9 and 10, we meet at least once a month. After Grade 10, meetings are accelerated to at least once every three weeks, and in Grade 12, meetings are accelerated again to at least every two weeks or more as your student is working through their college application process. As your student gets into the meat of the application process, your counselor may advise more frequent meetings to ensure students are in the best position to complete their applications with time to spare.
Sometimes between scheduled meetings, an issue at school may arise, or a program opportunity may result along with an application deadline, or perhaps a student may simply have a question. In these cases, you or your student should always feel free to reach out to your counselor.
We have two primary office locations:
Princeton College Consulting
300 Witherspoon Street
Princeton, NJ 08542
Princeton College Consulting
590 Madison Avenue
New York, NY 10022
All the time! When we meet with your student and are discussing extracurricular activities, there are a number of different areas of focus for us:
- Is your student engaged in the right activities?
- Do we need to recommend, add, modify, or delete any activities?
- And most importantly, is your student achieving a meaningful level of depth in his/her various activities? If not, under our guidance, we help your student achieve deeper and deeper levels of meaningful involvement.
If you retain our services to work with your student through one of our Comprehensive packages, your student can apply to as many colleges as you like; although, there are some practical limitations. First, generally speaking, the optimal number of schools to apply to is 8-12. Beyond this point, your student will begin to enter the land of diminishing returns because if he/she gets into one school at a certain level of selectivity, they will be likely to gain admission to another school of equal selectivity. Ultimately, at the end of the day, they can only select one to attend. Furthermore, with each additional school, your student will need to write additional essays that will only add to stress levels and likely affect the quality of his or her applications.
When we work with your student through one of our Comprehensive packages, we do not limit how many college application essays we will review or how many times we will review each one in order to get your student to demonstrate his/her best writing.
We do not limit how many times we will review an application essay. Our goal is to get your student to his or her best writing.
Absolutely! With the exception of one or two questions you will be asked in any interview, your student’s responses will come from his or her life experiences. Our job is to help prepare your student to provide clear and compelling responses to any of the 30-40 different questions your student may be asked in any interview. By the time we have completed our interview preparation, your student will be prepared for any question and will be armed with some key questions to ask the interviewer that will be viewed as insightful.
We will build your student's initial college list at the end of sophomore year. Under certain circumstances, it may be appropriate to develop preliminary lists earlier. If you start working with PCC beginning in 11th grade (or later), one of our first steps will be to build your initial college list. This is done once we get to know your student and have honed in on his or her area of interest.
Once we have developed an initial college list based on match and fit, we will commence a qualitative and quantitative college research process. On the qualitative front, we will provide you with a list of tasks to complete when you visit any college. On the quantitative front, we will teach your student how to evaluate any school along with all the key attributes to review in order to understand why a given school would be an ideal place for your student. As we step through the research process with your student, we will help him/her narrow down the list based on key learnings derived from both the college visits you make and from the online research we will navigate your student through.
We do not, because at Princeton College Consulting it is a team effort. While your student will have a one-on-one relationship with a counselor, it is the collaborative behind-the-scenes teamwork and additional perspective that we provide to each other that plays an important role in our students’ outcomes.
Most families do not ask for references because nearly 70% of our business comes via referrals. Having said that, in the event you would like a reference, we are more than happy to provide it once you sign an agreement to work with us. Then, before we send an invoice, we will provide a reference.
If for any reason you do not want to proceed after speaking with the reference, then we will cancel the agreement. While this may seem counterintuitive, there is a very specific reason that we do this. We understand that as part of your decision-making process you may want to speak with a reference. However, our past clients, while they are more than happy to provide a reference, do not want to be bombarded with multiple calls while families are still shopping around for a consulting firm. This is why we ask families to get to a point where pending the outcome of a reference check, they want to retain Princeton College Consulting. In the meantime please feel free to review our extensive list of testimonials.
Absolutely not! Client privacy is sacrosanct. We adhere to the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) Principles of Good Practice.
No. It would be unethical of us as independent educational consultants who adhere to the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) Principles of Good Practice to guarantee admission to any school. There are some firms that provide guarantees, but those guarantees are typically accompanied with extremely high fees and the admissions decision is still not guaranteed.
With the exception of the recent college admissions scandal, where illegal guarantees were made, it is virtually impossible to guarantee someone will be admitted to any given school. You should be wary of anyone who promises to get your student into any college, particularly into ivy league colleges. No one can guarantee admissions and this violates the ethics of the profession.
While working with your student, we may administer an SAT and/or ACT diagnostic in order to determine which test is better suited for your student and to determine when your student should begin test preparation. That being said, we are not test preparation tutors. Rather, after years of experience working with various test preparation companies, we have identified one or two "best of breed" test preparation companies that have achieved results for our students that have far exceeded any other test preparation companies we have worked with in the past. The first, ArborBridge would be appropriate for students who would prefer individualized one-on-one test preparation. The other test preparation company - eprep.com is for students who prefer to prepare for tests on a self-directed basis.
We limit each counselor to no more than 10 students per grade. At this level, it ensures that each counselor will be able to spend all the time that is necessary to navigate your student through a successful college admissions process.
Your job is to support your student emotionally as they move through this process. This is naturally a stressful time for students and our objective is to develop a one-on-one relationship directly with your student. Most meetings will be between your student’s counselor and your student. This is important because in helping your student to maximize his or her potential he or she needs to be accountable for their work throughout the consulting process.
However, we also understand that while your student is our client, you are our customer. As such, your counselor will keep you up-to-date after each meeting on the work they are doing with your student by sending you meeting notes after each meeting, including but not limited to, work performed, progress made, any issues (if appropriate), etc... Additionally, once per quarter your counselor will reach out to you to set up an update meeting so you can ask any questions you may have. Lastly, you should always feel free to reach out to your counselor by phone or email to set up a time to address any questions or concerns.
While your student is our client, you are our customer. As such, your counselor will keep you up-to-date after each meeting on the work they are doing with your student by sending you meeting notes after each meeting, including but not limited to, work performed, progress made, any issues (if appropriate), etc... Additionally, once per quarter your counselor will reach out to you to set up an update meeting so you can ask any questions you may have. Lastly, you should always feel free to reach out to your counselor by phone or email to set up a time to address any questions or concerns.
But that is not all. Via our platform, assuming your student grants you access, parents will have visibility into scheduled meetings, meeting agendas, to-do lists, deadlines, college lists, essays, documents, etc. In short, you will be able to keep your finger on the pulse of the work we are doing with your student.
In almost all of our client meetings, we prefer that parents do not participate in meetings between their student and their counselor because generally, the parents' presence inhibits the student from feeling comfortable enough to be completely honest with our counselors. An essential part of understanding your student is having the student be vulnerable enough to say exactly what is on his or her mind. Learning who he or she really is will be tantamount in the college admissions process.
Yes. We help students prepare portfolios for fine arts, architecture, and fashion. We also help students prepare for auditions in music and theater. Additionally, we work with student-athletes across all collegiate sports and help them navigate the college recruiting and application process. For more information, go to: Athletic Recruitment
Yes. Peter and Ben (our co-founders) work with a limited number of students. However, families generally book with them one to two years in advance of commencing the counseling process. If you are interested in working directly with Peter or Ben, please contact our Director of Client Relations so we can check availability.
Even when working with other counselors on the PCC team, you will still benefit from the experience and expertise of Peter and Ben. They both work with each of our counselors to provide an additional layer of perspective in the highly subjective college admissions process.
In the unlikely event that you may be unsatisfied with our service, we encourage you to first reach out to our Director of Client Relations so that we may have the opportunity to make adjustments to the extent appropriate. However, if at any point during our relationship you are unsatisfied with our service, you may terminate our agreement and you will not be responsible for any future payments.
Yes, learn more about our Graduate School Admissions Consulting.
Yes, learn more about our Prep School Admissions Consulting.
If you are interested in learning more about Princeton College Consulting, you can fill out our contact form here to speak with our Director of Client Relations to arrange a time for an initial consultation with our managing partner. You can also reach us directly at 609-454-8520 in New Jersey or at 646-530-8420 in New York.