The College Savvy Coach

Sia Knight

The College Savvy Coach - Sia Knight

Former Penn State Official Offers Her Best Advice for College-Bound Students

Dr. Tara Scales Williams

Dr. Tara Scales Williams

As I encounter people who have worked in the university setting, I ask them for advice for the College Savvy Community.  Recently, I had the pleasure of meeting a former college official who was kind enough to share some insight.

Dr. Tara Scales Williams is a former faculty member and administrator at Pennsylvania State University where she spent many years helping college students. When I asked her about her “best advice for college-bound students”, she provided several pearls of wisdom:

  • Students should know that the admissions process is different from the financial aid process.  With this in mind, students should make an informed choice on where to enroll based on all of the factors involved (academic, college culture, financial, etc.), not just based on an offer of admission.
  • Students should know what funding is available for their sophomore, junior and senior years.  Often students enroll at a university based on promised funds for freshman year and are shocked when they are not eligible for many scholarship and grants as they become upperclassmen.
  • Students should look for a mentor on campus. The benefits of finding someone who can help to navigate campus culture are infinite. It is imperative that students seek someone who can help with the numerous unwritten rules of a particular university in an effort to ensure a smooth transition.

3 Massive Mistakes Moms of Teens Make That Stop Their Kids From Getting Into College

Free Webinar – 3 Massive Mistakes Moms of Teens Make That Keep Their Kids From Getting Into College

Are you worried about college?

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frustrated mom

  • College tuition is skyrocketing at an alarming rate and many parents are left wondering whether or not they will be able to afford to educate their children.
  •  In addition to the astronomical cost of college, today’s college admissions environment has become ultra-competitive. Gone are the days when good grades and mediocre recommendations were enough to secure a spot for your student in his or her preferred freshman class.
  • Parents must know how to help their students best distinguish themselves to be great candidates for college admission and scholarships.  In order to position yourself for great results, avoid these 3 big mistakes.

Click here to go to the registration page, then scroll down to register!

Rethinking College

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Jay Mathews: Correcting my college-prep mistakes Washington Post We have a greater concentration of college-level Advanced Placement, International Baccalaureate and Advanced International Certificate of Education in our high schools than anywhere…

Sia Knight‘s insight:

Here is an interesting piece from Jay Mathews about alternatives to a four-year college education.

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College waitlist limbo: Growing number of schools delaying admissions decisions

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Nationwide, a growing number of colleges and universities are using waitlists to delay telling applicants whether there is room for them in the freshman class, according to several studies. Colleges usually turn to the lists, which leave students in an admissions purgatory, after the May 1 decision deadline to fill any remaining spots in their class.

Sia Knight‘s insight:

Here’s one more thing for parents and students to think about when preparing and planning for college.

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College Applications: How Many Is Too Many?

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With the unpredictability of the college admission process, it can be difficult to decide how many applications to submit.

Sia Knight‘s insight:

I absolutely echo the sentiment about the increasing amount of unpredictability in admissions decisions.  It’s becoming harder and harder to advise students about their chances of getting into a particular school.

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What Are Education Tests For, Anyway? – NPR

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Tests have existed throughout the history of education. Today they’re being used more than ever before — but not necessarily as designed. Different types of tests are best for different purposes.


Sia Knight‘s insight:

Here is a question that many students and adults have asked, “What are education test for, anyway?”  Here is a great primer that explains many aspects of testing.

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A College Professor Reveals His Best Advice for College-Bound Students

As I meet people who work in higher education, I attempt to gain insight for my audience by posing one very basic, yet important question, “What is your best advice for college-bound students?” On a recent college tour for counselors, I had the opportunity to speak with a history professor at a small Liberal Arts university, David Imhoof.   After several seconds of measured pensiveness, he replied that, in his opinion, most college students lack a very important skill – time management.  He attributes this lack of time mastery to the over scheduling that most of these undergraduates faced in high school. For many of these students, virtually every minute of each day was programmed.  Dr. Imhoof concludes that most young adults have not had to learn to schedule their free time and, therefore, are unable to self-regulate while subject to multiple distractions.  According to Imhoof, college-bound students should learn how to consciously and effectively use time.  His message for parents is a note not often heard in the college prep ranks – schedule your child for fewer activities, not more.  He suggests that by doing this, parents are actually allowing students to learn a very important skill that will help their children not only during the college years, but also as they embark upon their post-collegiate lives.

Dr. Imhoof

Dr. David Imhoof


David Imhoof, department chair and associate professor of History at Susquehanna University, works with a program designed to assist first-year students.  His latest book, Becoming a Nazi Town: Culture and Politics in Göttingen between the World Wars (Social History, Popular Culture, and Politics in Germany) is available through Amazon.


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