Keeping It Simple

On Friday, Jay Matthews of the Washington Post wrote a blog titled, “5 wrong ideas about college admission.”  I just wanted to bring some attention to the piece because of its simple effectiveness.

One of the reasons I created Dobler College Consulting was because I see the frustration families and their college-bound students experience trying to navigate the application process. With an unlimited number of blogs, articles, publications, books, and media coverage touting lists and rankings, what to do and what not to do and tips on how to write the perfect essay, sometimes the best thing you can do is take a step back and try to simplify things.

You want to demonstrate to a college that you are a strong student by taking AP courses? Great! Choose subject areas where you excel and where you have strong interests. Think about your brand rather than signing up for every AP course possible.

You want to show that you have been involved in something that matters to you? Great! Get involved, but make it count. Eight days a week, it is better for you to show a depth of involvement in one or two activities rather than lining up your resume with twenty clubs and organizations as you head into your senior year.

Your application and supporting materials should reflect who you are as a student and, more importantly, as a person. Be true to you, invest your time wisely and, when in doubt, think about quality versus quantity.

Jay’s blog takes this approach while offering some helpful and simple advice.  I hope you take a minute to read it.

If someone has given you a tip that was extremely helpful, please use the comment section below. You can also email me directly at

Eric Dobler is the president and founder of Dobler College Consulting. Follow him on Twitter.

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