Essential College Admissions Advice for Parents

The Great College Roadmap

We make no bones about it: we offer Great College Advice® to our full-service, one-on-one advisees. We are awesome at working one-on-one with students. But what about college admissions advice for parents?

Full-service, one-on-one advising is not for everyone.  First of all, it can be expensive.  Second, many parents are able—and want—to do most of the process themselves. 

And yet even the most independent parent needs a little help now and then. So we offer essential Great College Advice for those families who want a boost at critical points in the college process, and yet prefer to do the day-to-day management of the process themselves.  

This is our Essential (and Affordable!) Great College Advice for Parents

The Essential College Prep Needs of Every Family: The Great College Roadmap

ONLY $1799

1. Get Ready! The College Prep Booster

This service jump starts to the entire college process.  We gather essential information about the student and family, learn your priorities and preferences, and encourage you to ask your burning questions.  We evaluate the student’s academic and extracurricular record, as well as their ambitions.  We consider possible college majors that may suit the student.  We uncover the hidden potential of the student, and we offer advice on how to take best advantage of that potential.  Then, in a 60-90 minute meeting, we give our no-nonsense Great College Advice on how to get organized, get excited, and get ready for the college process.  We give you the direction you need to make your high school experience fun and productive, while also setting yourself up for college success.

Available to students of any age. To learn more about this introductory service, please click here.

      Price if purchased separately:  $450

 2. Get Set!  The College List Builder

This service delivers a list of colleges that fit the student’s priorities, preferences, needs, and ambitions.  We gather more information about what the student and family seek in the higher education experience, and ask pointed questions about costs, affordability, desired majors, extracurricular involvements, and many other criteria. We evaluate a student’s chances of both admission and the potential for receiving financial and scholarship aid. Then we create a list of 20-30 colleges and universities that fit the family’s goals and priorities.  The list includes reports on each of the schools on the list.  Then in a 60-90 minute meeting, we go over the list with the family to explain the rationale behind the list of schools and answer burning questions.  We also include tips and tricks for researching schools to get beyond the websites and dig into what really matters for the student and family.

Available to students who have finished at least 5 semesters of high school and who have an official ACT or SAT score — or who are part of this exclusive package.

      Price if purchased separately:  $2200

3. Go!  The Application Strategy Launchpad

The application can seem daunting.  This service gives you a strong strategic vision of how to complete the application in a way that makes the student shine.  We review the student’s background and track record, and then gather information about the student’s aims and ambitions.  We review the list of schools to which the student will apply, and evaluate the list for balance (stretch, target, likely).  Then in a 60-90 minute meeting, we provide the student and family with guidance on how to best present the student’s strengths in the various pieces of the application, including personal statements, supplemental essays, activities lists, honors and awards, additional information, and supporting documentation.  We also provide a spreadsheet with essential information on each of the schools, including application deadlines, interview preparation, and testing policies.  You receive all the guidance necessary to craft a winning application.

 Available to rising seniors from June 1st onwards, or as part of this exclusive package of services for parents.

      Price if purchased separately:  $750

Essential College Admissions Advice for Parents

Everything you need at one low price (a $3400 value!)


All three meetings for the single, low price of $1799

  1. Get Ready!  The College Prep Booster
  2. Get Set! The College List Builder
  3. Go! The Application Strategy Launchpad

Plus, with the essential Great College Roadmap program, you get the following bonuses:


Video explanations of EVERY aspect of the college preparation, selection, and application process.  This is every tip and trick that Mark and his team have shared with their private clients over the past 12 years.  You get 120+ videos—nearly 30 hours of instruction–neatly organized into easy-to-navigate topics.  It’s Everything You Always Wanted to Know About the College Admissions Process (*but were afraid to ask)!  PLUS, you get worksheets, exercises, documents, and e-books that go along with the videos—all designed to help you manage every aspect of the college process on your own.

To learn more about the video program, watch this short video.


Want to reduce the cost of higher education for your family?  Lynn O’Shaughnessy is the world’s foremost expert on maximizing scholarship and financial aid.  She has been sharing her secrets with families for over a decade, and for families who sign up for ALL the essentials, you’ll have access to Lynn’s exclusive course that can save your family TENS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS. And isn’t the sort of college admissions advice for parents that you’ve been searching for? This bonus alone is worth the entire cost of Essential Great College Advice. 

To learn more about the Lynn O’Shaughnessy and how she can save you money, watch this short video.


Keep your family organized and on track by the powerful college planning tool that is only available to schools and to discriminating educational consultants.  This tool includes college research tools, sophisticated algorithms that measure your chances of admission, task management, essay prompts, and more!  Plus, this tool communicates with the Common Application, so you can quickly and easily transfer information from one platform to another, saving you tons of time and headache. This tool is not available on the retail market, but we offer it exclusively to those who opt for ALL the Essential Great College Advice.

To learn more about this incredible tool, please watch this short video.


Ask all your burning questions about the college process, and our team of experienced, expert consultants will respond.  And the advice we give is not mere generic pablum.  Because you will be able to share information about your student your unique situation in our web-based platform, we’ll give you specific, personalized answers to your questions.

The Great College Roadmap was conceived as a way to support families in their efforts to manage the process mostly on their own.

And why not?  The college preparation, selection, and application process can be a lot of fun (heck, we have fun as consultants—it’s why we do what we do!).  

But the fun is often tempered by stress and frustration and lack of clear information that pertains to an individual student and his or her family.  

So the Great College Roadmap provides that critical support, and eliminates the stress.

To learn more about our exclusive community, please watch this short video.


Why did we create the essential Great College Roadmap?

  1.  To democratize the college admissions process. Many people cannot afford to hire an expensive college admissions consultant to guide their child through the process.  This program is priced so that almost any family can afford to get some Great College Advice™.
  2. To provide a trusted guidance in a sea of hearsay, gossip, and charlatans.  Parents today are spending inordinate amounts of time sorting through random websites, Reddit threads, and getting advice from other bragging, chatty parents who have very little perspective.  While there are many good consultants out there, we also help you avoid the gloomers and doomers who whip parents into a fearful frenzy in order to get them to purchase their services. Parents can–and in many cases should–be a driving force behind this huge and expensive decision. At the same time, we want to instill confidence and reinforce the excitement of the college process, and provide college admissions advice for parents. We have guided hundreds of families through this process; there is very little that surprises us anymore, and we can provide a bit of wisdom that will help calm parents down and get everyone back on the straight and narrow path.  
  3. To provide some sanity to the process.  Too many families are sweating the small stuff, because they feel that the nitpicky details may determine the outcome.  Parents, in turn, nitpick at their kids about these nitpicky details—which drives kids mad.  We help parents and students focus on the important stuff (like, um, getting an education…?) that will set them up for long term success in college and beyond. 

To learn more about why we created this program, watch this short video.

More Than Generic Advice: Wisdom

What makes the Great College Roadmap different?  Besides the fact that this is college admissions advice for parents? Well in addition to the accessibility and affordability of the program, we provide more than just generic advice.  

  1.  Our advice is tailored to individual families and students.
  2. We are not afraid to share our perspective.  Parents don’t just need broad guidelines.  They need a bit of wisdom.  Mark is unafraid to share his opinions and judgments about how the process works—or doesn’t work.  He will call out colleges and their policies that are created to ensnare unwary consumers. He will provide his critiques of various college programs that may seem slick and sexy, but are mostly just smoke and mirrors.  You will get a genuine—refreshing—point of view that will help you develop your abilities to analyze and make sense of a college admissions system that was created by colleges for colleges.  

To learn more about Mark’s point of view, watch this short video.