Parent College Coach Tip #51: To Hire or Not To Hire a College Counselor

college counselorAre you the type of person who would rather pay someone to do something or are you a do-it-yourself kind of parent?

Do you have tons of disposable income or are you barely able to scrape enough money together for tuition?

Is your child a go-getter and on top of all his responsibilities or do you have to constantly prod and nudge him to get things done?

The answers to these questions should help you decide whether or not you should hire a college counselor. If money is a factor, the decision is easy. You have no choice but to take the lead and be your student’s guide through the process. But even if you have the money you may be the type who would rather do if yourself than pay someone to do it for you.

If money is no object, bringing a neutral party into the process might help ease some of the pressure and the stress and hiring an experienced counselor might be at the top of your list. Not to mention a college counselor can often help market your student to the college, find a good fit, and help find the schools where he will be at the top of the applicant pool–this translates into more merit aid and less money you have to spend for tuition.

If you do decide to hire a professional, get recommendations and references. Don’t believe shallow promises of guaranteed acceptances and hype that’s not verified by actual positive outcomes. This is a vast pool of professionals and it’s important that you do your homework and choose one who comes recommended by other parents who have used them.

If you decide not to hire a professional, don’t go it alone. Get help from experts online, read books, and do your research. In today’s information age, it’s easier than it’s ever been to find answers to all your college related questions. Just ask!

The choice is up to you–pay someone or do it yourself. Neither choice is better and neither guarantees success if your student isn’t invested in the process.

Read all of the Parent College Coach Tips here.

Author: Suzanne Shaffer

Suzanne Shaffer advises parents and students in the college admissions process and the importance of early college preparation at ParentsCountdowntoCollegeCoach.com. She is excited to share her knowledge with the readers of Smart College Visit.

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