Dunbar Educational Consultants

Positive Educational Direction
Professional guidance services for students bound
for boarding school (including special needs), college or graduate school

Services for College-Bound Students

We offer a variety of college guidance programs, ranging from introductory assessments to application essay guidance to ongoing, comprehensive assistance throughout the college admissions process, depending on the age and needs of each student.

High School Planning Session for students in 8th-9th grades:

Suitable for students in the 8th-9th grades, the High School Planning session will provide each student, and their parents, with an understanding of the key factors that colleges consider when making admission decisions and a personalized curriculum, standardized testing, and extracurricular activity “roadmap” to follow during their high school years that will maximize their college options when it comes time to apply in 12th grade.

Over years of guiding students, we have consistently emphasized the importance that college admissions officers place on academic achievement in high school. Our experience has taught us that students who take demanding courses, relative to their ability, who follow through on these subjects at the most advanced level appropriate for them and succeed in those courses, have the best chances for acceptance. We encourage you to challenge yourself.

Taking appropriate courses – at the advanced or regular level – requires foresight and careful planning. Wrong choices at the beginning of high school could impact a student’s ability to take appropriate courses in their senior year. Thus, the earlier we meet with a student during their high school experience, the more we can help them map out an appropriate curricular program for their high school years.

Student Assessment and College Guidance Consultations:

One or two consultations may be sufficient for some families to address their questions and concerns about the college admissions process. While topics may vary depending on the needs of each student, in an introductory assessment we typically provide:

  • an overview of the admissions process and key admission factors
  • a review and assessment of the student’s academic record and advice on their curriculum
  • advice on scheduling standardized testing
  • advice on extracurricular and summer activities
  • and assistance in developing a preliminary college list, if appropriate.

Prior to our consultation, we will review the student’s transcript, standardized testing record, and responses to our questionnaires to prepare for our discussion. A written summary of the discussion is provided following the meeting.

Application & Essay Guidance for Rising Seniors

Our college Application and Essay Guidance service is appropriate for rising high school seniors who have identified which colleges they will apply to and do not require assistance with other aspects of the college admissions process. A student who needs a review of their college list and help with their applications might choose to combine a College Guidance Consultation with the Application and Essay Guidance service.

The Application & Essay service includes:

  • guidance in completing the Common Application and Supplements (or equivalent for non-Common Application colleges) for up to 12 colleges
  • guided brainstorming on essay topics for the Personal Statement on the Common Application and supplementary essays (or equivalent for non-Common Application colleges)
  • development of timetable for essay work
  • and comments and suggested edits on application essay drafts, each of which are reviewed by several Dunbar consultants, insuring that varying perspectives are taken into account.

Good essays take time to develop. In our experience, students who start thinking about what they want to say about themselves and start drafting their essays before the start of their senior year will generally produce better written and more effective essays.

Comprehensive College Guidance:

Our ongoing Comprehensive College Guidance program is suitable for students finishing 10th grade, currently in 11th grade, or approaching 12th grade who would benefit from ongoing support throughout their college process. It consists of:

  • an initial consultation with the student and parent(s)
  • an overview of the college admissions process
  • a review and assessment of the student’s academic record and academic curriculum
  • advice on standardized testing
  • advice on extracurricular and summer activities
  • advice on how best to communicate with colleges regarding special talents
  • assistance in developing a preliminary college list and continued development of that list throughout the process
  • interview practice and advice
  • guidance in completing applications, writing application essays and comments on drafts for up to 12 colleges
  • “Best Fit” advice after acceptances in the spring
  • and advice on Wait List situations.

We communicate frequently and remain available throughout the process to respond to questions and/or concerns, and continuously refine the college list, ultimately giving each student our collective analysis of the degree of difficulty of individual colleges to maximize optimum choices. It is our hope that each student will begin, if they have not already done so, to take ownership of this process. We believe that students are in a position to learn a great deal and be successful if they fully participate in our program.

Please contact us for information on our fee schedule for these various programs.


Student Resources

FAQ's from High School Seniors

Making the Most out of College - Tips from our Current College Students


Class of 2014 College Acceptances

American International College Lehigh University University of Miami
Amherst College Life University University of Michigan
Barnard College Loyola University Maryland University of Mississippi
Bates College Miami University University of New Hampshire
Boston College Muhlenberg College University of North Carolina
Boston University North Carolina State University University of Notre Dame
Bowdoin College New England College University of Oregon
Brown University New York University University of Pennsylvania
Bryant University New York University - Abu Dhabi University of Pittsburgh
Bucknell University Northeastern University University of Redlands
California Polytechnic Univ. San Luis Obispo Northwestern University University of Rhode Island
California State Univ, Long Beach Oberlin College University of Richmond
Carnegie Mellon University Occidental College Univesity of San Diego
Case Western University Pace University University of San Francisco
Catholic University Pepperdine University University of South Carolina
Central Washington University Pitzer College University of Southern California
Chapman University Princeton University University of Tennessee
California State Univ. Chico Purdue University University of the Pacific
Clemson University Quinnipiac University University of Vermont
Cal Poly Pomona Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute University of Virginia
Colby College Rhode Island School of Design University of Washington
Colgate University Roger Williams University University of Wisconsin
College of the Holy Cross San Diego State Vanderbilt University
Colorado College Santa Clara University Villanova University
Colorado Mesa University Sarah Lawrence College Virginia Polytechnic Institute
Colorado State University - Pueblo Skidmore College Wake Forest University
Columbia University Smith College Washington Univ. in St. Louis
Connecticut College Southern Methodist University Wellesley College
Cornell University St. Lawrence University Wheaton College
Davidson College St. Mary's College CA Wheeling Jesuit University
Denison University Stanford University William & Mary
Drew University State Univ. of New York - Binghamton Williamette University
Drexel University State Univ. of New York - Geneseo Williams College
Duke University State Univ. of New York - Purchase Worcester Polytechnic University
Elon University Swarthmore College Yale University
Emerson College Syracuse University
Emory University Trinity College Univ of British Columbia
Fairfield University Tufts University
Florida State University Tulane University Courtauld Art Institute, London
Fordham University Union College Durham UK
Furman University University of Alabama Edinburgh UK
George Washington University UC Berkeley Goldsmiths UK
Georgetown University UC Davis Kings UK
Georgia Institute of Technology UC Irvine Oxford UK
Grinnell College UC Riverside Royal Holloway UK
Hamilton College UC San Diego SOAS UK
Harvey Mudd College UC Santa Cruz St. Andrews UK
Hobart and William Smith Colleges UC Los Angeles
Hofstra University UC Santa Barbara
Humboldt State CA University of Colorado Boulder
Indiana University University of Connecticut
Ithaca College University of Delaware
Kenyon College University of Denver
Kutztown University University of Kentucky
University of Massachusetts

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