Get Started on the Common Application Essay

The Common Application goes live August 1. Before then, high school students across the country are working on their essays and getting ahead on their college applications. A number of these students are getting professional help from companies like International College Counselors.


At ICC, we encourage students to be themselves. We work with students to pinpoint the themes that will put them in the best light for college admissions. Often, a great story is simply not a great college essay.  We help break through the confusion.


As for support, we review essays and provide editing suggestions, we do not do essays! Even Hemingway and Fitzgerald had editors. We actually provide our students with “double printout reviews.” This means, each essay is reviewed by at least two different editors. It’s amazing what another set of eyes can find, especially once the essay is taken off the computer and printed out on paper.


The best essays contain stories which reveal the character and personality of the student as well as accomplishment and or achievement. This does not mean you need to have won a Nobel Prize or an Olympics medal, instead, you may have made a difference in the life of someone else and-or have shown personal growth. Sometimes the most tremendous stories start with a small one.


Never lie on the college application or in the essay – even if desperation runs high to get into a school.  If a university finds out a student has fibbed, a student’s admission can be rescinded, or the student will be expelled if the lie is uncovered after matriculation. Colleges know if a student fibbed/ fudged/ lied because many are doing research of their own. College admissions officers may call up high schools to verify activities and awards.  They have also called jobs, internship organizers, and places where students have performed public service.  Thanks to the Internet, it’s easy to see if a student really has received a major award or a significant ranking, whether it’s in music or sports. In other cases, sources including “frenemies,” competitive parents, and administrators have exposed dishonest applicants and have tipped off admissions offices. Plagiarism is always wrong and schools can detect it with programs like Turnitin.


The good news is, we’ve never met a student who didn’t have a story for the essay – even the students who didn’t think they had anything to write about.


At ICC, we believe that every student has a gem of an essay within them.  What they need to do is express their truth clearly and accurately – and remember to proofread.


College essays are about the student.  Who they are and not who they’re not.

Need help with college essays and-or anything else related to college admission, advisors at ICC will work with your student. Contact International College Counselors at 954-414-9986 x1.