Podcast: Joy Meserve: Leading with Joy

In today’s episode, join me as I sit down with Joy Meserve, CEO and founder of Leading with Joy. We delve into her transformative journey from corporate PR to pioneering STEM education, exploring insights on joyful leadership and navigating career shifts. From parenting parallels to practical college prep tips, Joy shares candid wisdom and actionable […]

Join me in today’s episode as I delve into the intricacies of college waitlists. I’ll discuss the purpose behind waitlists and offer actionable advice for waitlisted students on navigating their current acceptances while strategically positioning themselves for potential waitlist admissions. Tune in! TRANSCRIPT Sheila Akbar: 0:00 They had the raw talent and stats to probably get […]

Podcast: Joanna Graham: Expertise, Authenticity, and Purpose

In today’s episode, I chat with Joanna Graham, one of Signet’s Senior Admissions Consultants, to discuss the significance of expertise, authenticity, and purpose in shaping students’ paths, highlighting the transformative power of education. Join us for insights into career navigation and the impact of self-discovery on students’ aspirations. TRANSCRIPT Joanna Graham: 0:00 I love this work. […]

Podcast: Shereem Herndon-Brown: The Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions

In today’s episode, I sit down with Shereen Herndon-Brown, founder of Strategic Admissions Advice, about the evolving college admissions process. We dive into the significance of redefining success, the value of authenticity, and the importance of embracing one’s unique identity in college applications. Tune in for insights on storytelling and diversity in higher education. TRANSCRIPT […]

Podcast: Van Tran: Embracing the Pivot

In today’s episode, I sit down with Van Tran, co-founder of API Rising, and delve into the intersection of art and technology, her pivotal career transitions in corporations, and the importance of trusting oneself in navigating diverse career paths. Join us for a conversation that inspires embracing purpose-driven career pivots and making a meaningful impact. […]

Podcast: Let’s Get Tactical: How to Build a College List

In today’s podcast episode, I talk about the college list. From navigating super scoring policies to campus visits and holistic considerations, gain valuable insights on creating a tailored list for a seamless college application process. Join me for essential tips and tools to guide you through this crucial phase. Resources here: Signet Education’s College List-Building […]

The Ultimate Guide to Summer Planning Course

  ACCESS THE COURSE NOW   Parents know that summer activity planning is important for college admissions. But don’t stress – with the right steps and timely planning, you can make the most of how your teen invests their time in the summer, and strategically choose the right thing for them! Signet Education’s 40-minute Summer […]

Podcast: Dr. Neha Pathak and Dr. Joyce Varughese: Education and the Children of Immigrants

In today’s episode, I engage in a compelling conversation with two dear friends and accomplished professionals, Dr. Neha Pathak and Dr. Joyce Varughese, on navigating the pressures of college and societal expectations. They offer insightful advice for the next generation, urging a pursuit of passion over predefined paths. Join us as they candidly discuss the […]

[Podcast] Andy Friedman: Word Nerd

In today’s episode, join us as we dive into Andy’s unique journey on exploring the art of writing, the musicality of language, and how he guides students to craft compelling narratives. Get ready for an engaging and insightful discussion! TRANSCRIPT Andy Friedman: 0:00 And what what always fascinated me was how something can feel so clear […]

Podcast: Let’s get tactical: How to Plan your Summer

Welcome back to the podcast! After a refreshing holiday break, join me as I share valuable insights on making your student’s summer meaningful. Let’s kick off the year together! Access Signet’s Guide to Summer Planning here. Explore various summer programs and exciting opportunities from Pathways to Science, Teenlife, and College Match Point. TRANSCRIPT Sheila Akbar: Hello, and welcome back […]

Podcast: Samara Bay: Permission to Speak

In today’s episode, I dive into a captivating conversation with Samara Bay, an advocate for embracing individuality and finding power in our unique voices. We explore the transformative impact of authenticity and self-acceptance while uncovering Samara’s upcoming newsletter series, ‘How to Show Up,’ aimed at reshaping power dynamics. Join us for an inspiring discussion! TRANSCRIPT […]

Podcast: Let’s Get Tactical: Early Results Are Coming Out

Early results are here! Dive into my latest episode to understand how to decode acceptances, denials, and deferrals, and learn why these decisions don’t define your journey. Join me as we navigate the highs and lows of early applications, helping you support your child through this pivotal moment! TRANSCRIPT Sheila Akbar: We want to remember, […]

Podcast: McKenzie Carver: What is a Co-Op program?

In today’s episode, I sit down with McKenzie, Signet Education’s exceptional Community and Operations Manager. Our conversation delves into the impact of her Co-Op program at Northeastern on her college experience and her career journey. TRANSCRIPT McKenzie – Signet Education: 0:00 But I gained so much experience from little things such as how to dress in […]

Podcast: Jaime Smith: Transfer & Homeschool Admissions

In today’s episode, I sit down with educational consultant Jamie Smith to explore transfer admissions. Join us as we unravel the opportunities and challenges for non-traditional students, from transfers to homeschoolers. Get ready for insights into the evolving higher education landscape and its impact on admissions. Don’t miss this conversation about fostering diversity on campuses […]

Podcast: Annie Tulkin: Accessible College

In this episode, Annie Tulkin, the founder of Accessible College, and I discuss the world of college transition support for students with disabilities. Don’t miss this insightful conversation that sheds light on the path to college success for all students. Follow Annie Tulkin on LinkedIn, Facebook, or Instagram, and visit her website here. Connect with me on LinkedIn and become a […]

Podcast: Sharon Genicoff: Personal Branding in College Admissions

In this episode, I sit down with high school college counselor Sharon Genicoff to explore the art of crafting an authentic personal brand for your college applications. Our conversation empowers students to present their unique qualities in a meaningful way, ensuring their college applications stand out and reflect their genuine selves. Tune in for invaluable […]

Podcast: Alberto Naviera: STEM tutoring

In today’s episode, I speak with one of Signet’s Principal Tutors, Alberto Naviera. We discuss Alberto’s unique approach to STEM tutoring, his empathetic connections with students, and how he empowers them to conquer the challenges of learning science. Tune in to learn more about how we meet students where they are at Signet! TRANSCRIPT Sheila […]

Procrastination? Or Fear in Disguise?

Procrastination? Fear or Disguise.

Here’s a look into the future: It’s Spring of 2024. The school year is rolling on. Homework and activities have piled up. And you realize you’re behind—again.    You thought this time would be different, but the days slipped away, “have to’s” piled up, and your hope of being purposeful and intentional got swallowed by […]

Podcast: Bob Schaeffer: Fairtest.org

Today I sit down with longtime friend, Bob Schaeffer. Bob is an incredible source of knowledge around how the testing landscape has changed in the last several decades and the work that he and his team at FairTest do is invaluable. Tune in to hear about the test optional movement in college admissions and more!   TRANSCRIPT […]

Signet Admissions Results

Since we started helping students in 2005 get into their dream schools, our team of former admissions officers, writing coaches, and research analysts have helped students with hundreds of personal statements, supplemental essays, activity lists, and resumes. On top of that, we’ve given our students advice on which schools to target, how best to frame […]

Podcast: Urvashi Bhatnagar: Why Cross-Functional Learning is Essential for Success

This week, I sit down with scholar, author, leader, and mom Urvashi Bhatnagar to talk about her educational journey and the importance of learning skills and knowledge from outside your career silo. TRANSCRIPT Urvashi Bhatnagar: 0:00 I think we need to recognize that careers are a journey. And they will most likely not retire in the […]

Podcast: Talia Kovacs: Building Resilience in Our Kids

More and more, our kids are anxious, afraid to make mistakes, and deeply shame-filled when they do. Our kids are refusing to try, and shutting down when things feel hard. What’s a parent to do? I’m pleased to host fellow Chief and resiliency specialist Talia Kovacs to the podcast to discuss her work and her […]

Riding the Winds of Change: How to Sail Through Transition

Riding the Winds of Change How to Sail Through Transition   It’s summer. Your kid is a teenager. That means you’re facing a whole lot of change. We don’t even need to know what age or year your child is currently in to know they’re facing some whopping transitions in the year ahead. All you […]

Podcast: Andrea West: The Power of Reflection in College Admissions

Today, I talk with Signet’s Director of Operations and senior academic coach, Andrea West about the benefits of combining traditional college admissions consulting with coaching. Coaching can not only improve a student’s academic performance, but it can also shift them into more of a growth mindset and self-knowledge, two things which are vitally important in […]

Podcast: Marie Bigham: Equity and Access in College Admissions

Marie Bigham, Founder & Executive Director of ACCEPT, joins to talk with us about issues of equity and access in college admissions, and the work that her non-profit has undertaken to make the system work better for everyone. TRANSCRIPT Marie Bigham: 0:00 So we’ve built this entire mythology, including put up these false barriers that create […]

Podcast: Panel: Do Asians face a higher bar in College admissions?

As their children approach the college process, some families face a uniquely challenging question: does the model minority myth help or hurt their students in college applications? Given the cases before the Supreme Court, the lack of transparency in the admissions process, and differing values around education, this discussion is overshadowed by strong opinions, confusion, and […]

Capturing Your Story

The school year is coming to a close, and you’re getting excited about summer and all its possibilities.  But nagging there in the back of your mind is this little thought that won’t leave you alone.  Your college essay.  You can put it off or pretend it’s not there, but eventually, you’ll have to face […]

Podcast: Ellen Braaten: Bright Kids Who Couldn’t Care Less

“He’s so smart, but he’s no longer interested in school—or any ‘offline’ activities.” “She used to love sports, but now she just mopes around.” “My kid has turned into such a slacker!” If this sounds like your child, you need to listen to this episode! This week, my friend @Dr. Ellen Braaten shares insights from […]

Podcast Bonus Episode: Tools for Academic Skill-Building and Accountability

Jay Bacrania: Skills for High School Success

Towards the end of my conversation with Jay, our CEO, last week, we started getting really tactical around various tools that can help build students’ awareness of their challenges and move them towards solutions. In this episode, we talk through calendars, digital distractions, time management, and a tool for examining how non-academic factors impact academic […]

Planning a Summer that Serves

Planning a Summer that Serves

Summer is on its way, and if you’re the parent of a high schooler, you’re probably starting to think about what they’re going to be spending all that free time doing.  How do you give them the freedom they need to refresh and avoid burnout, but also keep them challenged, mentally engaged and building a […]

The Weight of the Waitlist

The Weight of the Waitlist

If your child has been put on the waitlist for their college of choice, you know the ache of watching them struggle under the weight of it.  The feeling of being in limbo can be hard to bear, and it’s difficult to know what to do next. Although the waitlist isn’t a closed door, it […]

To Test or Not To Test?

To Test or Not To Test

One of the less visible changes that the 2020 pandemic brought us was the shift to “test optional” policies at many schools across the US.  Nearly 2,000 schools have now instituted this policy based not only on the lack of ability to test during lockdown, but on research showing standardized test scores do not offer […]

Podcast: How to Navigate the Waitlist

With all the college decisions that came out in the last week of March, I’m getting so many questions about how to navigate the waitlist. In this episode, I talk about what the waitlist is used for, how waitlist use has increased recently, and what students who are waitlisted should do to both move forward […]

Podcast: How to Achieve an Academic Turnaround

How to Achieve an Academic Turnaround

Meet Liz – one of Signet’s rockstar academic coaches. In today’s episode, Liz shares her approach to coaching, what kinds of challenges coaching can help with, and how to tell if your child is ready for coaching or not. Learn about how a coach puts students at the center of identifying and solving their own […]

[Podcast Trailer] Don’t Force It: How to Get Into College Without Losing Yourself In The Process

For all the stressed-out parents trying to help their teenagers navigate the complicated world of college admissions. Each episode offers insightful and in-depth conversations with admissions experts and professional educators with practical advice for getting through the process without losing sight of yourself, your kid, or your sanity. From building a strong academic and extracurricular […]

Making the Most of Your College Visits

Making the Most of Your College Visits

College visits can be daunting and stressful, but with the right approach and preparation, they can offer the building blocks for deep connection and foundational memories for you and your family. Here are a few tips to keep your college visits fun and intentional:   1. LIST WHAT YOU WANT TO KNOW. Have you ever […]

How to Build a College List

How to Build a College List

If your student is a sophomore or junior, it’s time to create a list that is robust enough to give you options, but tight enough that you can execute fantastic applications to all of them. Learn how to build a stellar college list.

Teach Students, Not Subjects

Teach Students, Not Subjects

One of Signet’s core values is “teach students, not subjects.” Discover what this value means to us—and to the students and families who seek our services.

Make Your College Application Stand Out

Make Your College Application Stand Out

Who are college admissions officers? And how can students ensure their applications stand out? Discover three helpful guidelines for making a good impression.

How Should Your Teen Spend Their Summer?

How Should Your Teen Spend Their Summer?

It’s not too early for high school students to begin planning their summers! Discover four strategies for planning activities that are engaging and fulfilling.

Common SAT and ACT Mistakes to Avoid

Common SAT and ACT Mistakes to Avoid

What mistakes should students avoid when studying for the SAT or ACT? Here are three common mistakes we see time and again at Signet and our proven solutions.

Timeline for SAT and ACT Test Prep

Timeline for SAT and ACT Test Prep

Is your student on track with their SAT or ACT test prep?    If you aren’t quite sure what constitutes “on track,” this blog is for you. Read on to learn more about the proper timeline for SAT or ACT test prep.    When Should Students Take the SAT or ACT? While it’s important for […]

Support Your Student’s Mental Health

How can parents best support their students’ mental health this winter? Start by using Signet’s Mental Health Checklist. Learn more about this valuable tool.

Preparing to Write the College Essay

Preparing to Write the College Essay

Preparing to write your college essay? Learn what makes a great college essay, how to write one from brainstorming to final draft, and helpful quick tips.

How Students Can Accomplish 2023 Goals

goals

New year, new resolutions! Learn how to help your teenager achieve reasonable goals by supporting them in establishing small habits that add up to BIG results.