The College Essay Guy Podcast: A Practical Guide to College Admissions
By Ethan Sawyer
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Practical, up-to-date interviews with experts in college admissions, financial aid, personal statements, test prep and more. Ethan Sawyer (aka College Essay Guy), interviews deans of admission, financial aid experts, and veterans of the admissions field to extract, then distill their advice into practical steps for students and those guiding them through the process. From creating an awesome college list to appealing a financial aid letter, Ethan skips the general advice and gets right to the action items, all in an effort to bring more ease, joy and purpose into the college admissions process.
||Clean205: That One Time a University Revoked More Than 60 Full Scholarships (And What You Can Do About It)||This episode is part one of three on access and equity in the college counseling community. Today we meet Joan Liu, a counselor at a high school in Southeast Asia, who has been working on the front lines of access and equity issues during her...||12/10/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean204: What You Need to Know About Standardized Tests and Mistakes to Avoid||In this episode you’ll hear Adam’s take on: What’s a “good” score? How much do SAT scores matter? Do students even need standardized tests? When should students take the test? What’s the difference between the SAT and the ACT? Do students..||5/10/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean203: 10 Ways Parents Can Support Their Students Through The College Application Process||On this podcast we discuss: Why parents should stop telling their students that there are tons of school and to not worry about where they will go Why (and how) to limit the amount of time you spend talking about college When the best time...||5/9/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean202: 25 Practical Ways to Reduce Testing Anxiety||On this episode we discuss, among other things: How common testing anxiety is (you may be surprised) How anxiety functions in the body Strategies for changing how you think about anxiety #reframing Some ways you can understand and adjust self-talk...||4/5/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean201: Test Optional Admissions 101: What, Why, Where, Who?||On this episode we discuss: Are standardized tests evil? What are some other standardized test myths that people tend to believe? To what extent does the SAT or ACT measure what students need to know in college? Important statistics from “Crossing...||4/4/2018||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean124: College Interview Tips and Strategies||This episode is an interview… on interviews! Monica James--whom you may’ve heard previously on the podcast in the episode on Demonstrated Interest--absolutely crushes it in this interview, offering more practical advice than you’ll find in most...||12/28/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean123: Should You Apply Early Decision or Regular Decision? (And the Chart That Can Help You Decide)||Should you apply Early Decision or not? Is there a statistical advantage to applying early or not? When making this decision, it might help to know what the regular decision acceptance rate is for a school and what the Early Decision acceptance rate...||12/4/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean122: Which Schools Are the Most Generous With Financial Aid? (International Version)||On this episode I talk with Jennie about: Why she created the chart in the first place She explains why your student doesn’t have to be incredible in order to get merit aid How much students’ ability to pay matters in admissions How to use the...||12/4/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean121: Which Schools Are the Most Generous With Financial Aid? (US Version)||On this episode Jeff and I discuss this rad resource on which schools are most generous with financial aid and after he shares with us his story, we discuss: Three huge myths that students and parents have about financially planning for college Why...||12/4/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean120: College List Hacking: Better Fit, Less Time, More Fun||On this episode I interview Anne Wager, who used to work for many years in data and technology but made the transition to counseling and, as she puts it, “out of desperation”, developed a set of cards that she uses with students to help them...||12/4/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean119: How to Improve Your Personal Statement in 20 Minutes||This episode represents part four of four in my epic mini-series with Tutor Ted and in this one I share what steps to take to turn your essay from “just okay” to “great.” Specifically, though, I share: What I believe the qualities of a great...||12/4/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean118: Who is the College Essay Guy?||This is part three of my four-part series with Ted Dorsey (aka Tutor Ted). On the last two episodes I interviewed Ted, while on this episode (and on the next one), Ted turns the tables on and interviews me. On this episode Ted just wanted to give...||12/4/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean117: How to Improve Your ACT Score By 2 Points in 20 Minutes||I’ve handed the reins over to my guest Ted Dorsey (AKA Tutor Ted), who has scored perfectly on the SAT, ACT, and PSAT, and let him do the podcast, where he’s going to offer up clear steps to improving your ACT score--in less time than it takes to...||9/18/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean116: Who is Tutor Ted? (and Resources for Brainstorming a Personal Statement)||Ted Dorsey, aka Tutor Ted, scored perfectly on the ACT, SAT, and PSAT. Oh, and on the SAT Subject Tests in Literature and Math Level 2. A graduate of Princeton and UCLA, Ted founded the test prep company Tutor Ted to help students around the world...||6/27/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean115: Quick & Dirty College List Builder & The Myth of Fit||This is part 2 of 2 of podcast episodes recorded last month in Eastern China. I met with Mark Moody, a friend of mine and a fantastic counselor with a ton of experience and some cool opinions you may not have heard before. During our chat we cover: ...||6/26/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean114: Free College Application Tools That Students (and Counselors!) Should Know About||If you know me, or if you’ve listened to the podcast before you know what a resource junkie I am… the same can be said, I think, for my guest on this episode, Shaun McElroy. Shaun is the publisher of two blogs: www.internationalcounselor.org which..||6/12/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean113: Debunking the Myth of the Starving Artist||In this episode we'll discuss: Data that proves art degrees are important The freedom that working a side job gives to self-employed artists The truth about the myth of the starving artist How to know if art school is for you What your ability...||6/6/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean112: How to Listen (And Why)||On this episode we discuss how Urban Confessional started, what Ben has learned about listening over the years, how these lessons have impacted his relationships and even what it was like doing free listening at last year’s Republican and Democratic..||5/25/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean111: Using the Secrets of Screenwriting to Write Your College Essay||In this podcast, I’ll dive into: The story behind how I started connecting screenwriting and the college essay in the first place. Two exercises that I love to use to generate some great content for the essay. Two structures that I think can work...||5/21/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean110: How to Create a Great College List (Part 2)||with Ted Fiske, Editor of The Fiske Guide to College||5/12/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean109: How to Figure Out Which School is Right for You||On this episode: How many schools students should apply to and when is best to start the process An amazing list of resources for helping students get to know themselves better Answers: What is the highest-impact hour that someone should spend...||5/5/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean108: Demonstrated Interest: A Brief and Practical How-To Guide||On this episode, my guest Monica James and I discuss, among other things: What the heck is demonstrated interest in the first place and why is it important to colleges? What “yield” is and why there’s a multi-million dollar industry of people...||5/1/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean107: What I've Learned from Reading Over 10,000 College Essays||I chat with Parke Muth, former Associate Dean of Admissions at UVA. We cover, among other things: What Parke has learned reading over 10,000 college essays We’ll go behind-the-scenes to look at how close decisions are sometimes made by committees...||4/20/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean106: Colleges That Change Lives||Great Schools You May Not (Yet!) Know About||4/17/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean105: How to Lead a Life-Changing Essay Workshop||This week, I cover: 6 Ways That Most Workshops Fail in the First Five Minutes (aka 6 Terrible Ways to Start a Workshop) 9 Tips for Leading a Workshop of Any Size 5 Potentially Life-Changing Workshop Moments Bee tea dubs: These are essentially three...||3/31/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean104: How to Plan a Fulfilling and Productive Summer||Curious how to make the most of your upcoming summer? There's a lot you can do (and they don't all cost money.) This episode, we cover: Great questions to ask when it comes to planning a summer The 2014 National Pre-College Summer Survey, which Jill...||3/31/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean103: How to Appeal a Financial Aid Award Letter||Ever wonder what you should include in an appeal letter? This week, Jodi and I cover: Who should make the call to a financial aid office: the student or parent? What to literally say to a financial aid officer when you call them to appeal Why you...||3/29/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean102: How to Advocate for Undocumented Students||I chat with Dr. Aliza Gilbert about how to support undocumented students. We chat about: What terms to use (and not use) when working with undocumented students What the Dream Act is and why not all students love the term “Dreamers” What...||3/28/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
||Clean101: Life As an Undocumented Student at Harvard||I chat with current Harvard student Daishi Tanaka. We chat about: What a typical day is like for a Harvard student What it might mean for him and 700,000+ other undocumented students if the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy is...||3/25/2017||Free||View in iTunes|
Helpful - I want more!
Great & informative podcast. I would love next to see some advice for international students. How can foreign students avoid writing essays about cliche or overused themes?
Thank you for sharing resources and knowledge useful not only for US students and counselors, but also for many international students around the world.
How to Lead a Life-Changing Essay Workshop
I had read Ethan's book, and utilized many of the resources on his website. I knew these new podcasts would be great, and they don't disappoint. Practical and interesting information I can use with my students immediately! Ethan is so generous with his time and advice, and truly has a "we are all on the same team" attitude toward all college conselors. I look forward to each new podcast, and continuing the camaraderie. Thanks for all you are doing for the students and this profession!
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