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By Ben Feuer

Lately, there has been a lot of debate about whether college is right for every student, or indeed the majority of students. If you are applying to college next year, should you be listening to this debate? Here is the answer.

Okay. I’m going to get personal here for a minute. It’s hard for me to fully appreciate the challenges some people have in accessing higher education. I was fortunate; my parents both went to graduate school at Ivy League universities, and aside from some handwaving about cost of education and student loans and murmurs like “Rutgers is offering an awful lot of tuition money”, there was never any serious doubt that I would have control over my own choices when it came to higher education.

For a variety of reasons, many people out there are not as fortunate as I was. That said, college is still the gateway to a better way of life for the vast majority of young people in this country.  According to Pew, millenials with college educations earn $15,000 a year more on average than their peers, and face unemployment rates of around 4%, as opposed to 12% for those with high school educations.

With that said, the trend may be changing, and there are already important alternatives to consider.  Trade schools are on the rise, and talented technicians earn almost as much as college graduates, on average.  Community colleges can provide valuable associates degrees, or can act as gateways to the full college experience.

But every major choice in life is difficult, and a choice like whether or not to go to college is exceptionally difficult.  That’s why, if you are thinking about whether or not to go to school, I recommend you check your gag reflex.

No, not the gag reflex after you have one too many dirty martinis (but you wouldn’t know anything about that, would you?) – – The gag reflex is a little acronym checklist to help students decide if college is right for them.  I know, it's cheesy, but hey.

Here are the steps of GAG.  They should be considered (and prioritized) in order.

1.  Grades.

How successful were you in high school? This also applies to standardized tests like SATs. The reason we consider this first is because it has such a heavy influence on everything else. If your grades aren't up to snuff, it really doesn't matter that you think you be interested in being a doctor – – nursing's a better fit. On the other hand, if you have great grades, maybe you can trade prestige for scholarship dollars by going to a local or state school. Long story short, if you have the grades and put in the work, you belong at a top school. Don’t sell yourself short, and don’t let fear stand in your way.

2.  Access.

Students who come from money are always going to have college options, whether private, out-of-state, for-profit, online… The list goes on. Students from limited financial backgrounds have to seriously consider alternate strategies more seriously.  But there are other factors besides money that can limit access. Handicaps, both physical and mental, play a role in evaluating a student’s college readiness. Some students, either by preference or necessity, stay close to home. 

3.  Goals.

Not everybody thrives in college, and not everybody who eventually thrives in college is ready to do so at age 18. Some people just need to have a little work experience and maturity before they are really ready to go out on their own like that. Don’t worry so much about career goals at this early stage, because no offense, you have no idea what your options are when it comes to career. Nobody does, until they get out there and find out what the market is actually looking for. The kind of goals that matter at this stage are little bit bigger picture. Are you interested in the arts and humanities, or are you more of a math and science gal?  Do you like working in teams, or alone? Do you think you are interested in management? What kind of situations, settings, and environments make you feel most comfortable?

Naturally, you’re going to talk any major life decision over with your friends, family, and loved ones. It’s good to get a lot of opinions. That said, in the end this is your life and your choice.  Do yourself a favor and gag before you leap.

----

Don't be shy! Schedule a consultation to find out how we can help you.


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It’s the online business education that isn’t an online business education. It’s taught by HBS professors, but it’s not an HBS program.  It’s an elite training program for ambitious future business students without the specific guarantees of an MBA degree. Such are the ambiguities and contradictions in Harvard’s new HBX core program.  Is it worth the high price of admission?

The frequently asked questions and HBX Core’s shiny new website look promising enough.  Many people decide to go to business school relatively late in life, it argues. Why should they be at a disadvantage compared to those who got involved in banking right after graduating? HBX core hopes to close the knowledge gap, improving students ability to hit the ground running when they start attending business school. The program is a part time commitment -- you can still do your job while you are taking the classes. It is also designed to be rigorous, delivering grades and promising serious expectations for assignments and class participation.

But can Harvard actually deliver value for the money with HBX Core? The answer isn’t yet clear, and it’s unlikely to be anytime soon. That said, we did our best to find out by contacting admissions officers in the know.  The results were a little disturbing.  Forster Thomas’s admissions contacts at top business schools indicated that not only has Harvard not reached out to them about the program to flout its benefits, many of them were not even aware it existed. Although they will most likely review it along with all the other new initiatives when they meet in the fall to begin considering admissions, it seems unlikely at this point that the Harvard name alone is going to make the Core certification leap out on anybody’s resume.

That said, there are a few things about HBX Core that might make it more valuable than your average community college accounting course, but even these aren’t sure things. For instance, will Harvard’s plan to grade on a high honors\honors\pass basis actually correlate to the business ability of students graduating from the program? If so, the program’s reputation easily grow over time. If not, it could lose all its credibility overnight.

All in all, it’s probably too soon to make a full judgment either way on HBX core. For students planning to apply next year, it’s hard to endorse the program unless you are absolutely planning to apply to Harvard. It seems like a safe bet that Harvard will want to promote the program and make it seem legitimate in its early stages, which means they will probably make a big show of admitting at least a few core students into HBS.

For other schools, the benefit is less clear. Also unclear is whether the core program can substitute in any meaningful way for full MBA program, or even a one-year-old part-time MBA program. Will employers value the certification?  Will Harvard try to bring some recruiters in as partners?  It’s an alternate approach which could bear fruit, but there are no signs of it as of yet.

We will keep our eye on the story as it develops. In the meantime, if you want to get the latest information on HBX core or if you have any questions, just contact us and will be happy to answer them.



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We are proud to announce that Forster-Thomas’s own Evan Forster and Ben Feuer were featured in this month’s IECA “Insights” publication. 

The Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) is a not-for-profit, international professional Association representing experienced independent educational consultants. Chartered in 1976, the Association's headquarters is located in the Washington, DC area. IECA sponsors professional training institutes,workshops and conferences, publishes a directory of qualified independent educational consultants, offers information to students and their families regarding school selection issues and works to ensure that those in the profession adhere to the highest ethical and business standards. Evan is a professional member of IECA, and Ben is an associate member.

Evan wrote a piece on architecture admissions, explaining in detail how to separate your personal statement out from the pack. Ben covered the ins and outs of crafting a top-notch MFA portfolio, including personal statement, writing samples, and visual samples.

You can read the articles in their entirety at this link, along with tons of other great articles about law school, medical school and the new SATs. If you have questions or want to know more, feel free to contact Ben and Evan directly by calling Forster Thomas’s office.  You can also see them in person at IECA’s annual conference from May 6th to May 9th.



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One of the most fundamental questions future MBAs (and students in general) face is whether to plan on entering the job market after graduating or devote time and energy to founding a small business.  We break down some of the factors involved in the decision.

Capital considerations.

Many college students are frightened of starting their own businesses because of economics and capital.  “I don’t want to go into debt even more than I already have”, they tell me.  Fair enough.  But there are a lot of great small businesses, like services and software, that require relatively little up-front investment.  And some of the capital intensive businesses, like hardware, are developing economies of scale, with the ability to do short runs at factories.  Plus, fundraising can be a really transformative experience for people interested in business, and sales is a vitally important skill.

Don’t let capital stand in the way of your business idea.

Time considerations.

Starting a small business in college can be a really daunting undertaking.  Expect to be devoting anywhere from 10 to 40 hours a week to your business, depending on how involved it is.  This is time you won’t be spending networking, volunteering, taking internships or (of course) studying.

This is certainly one of the biggest sacrifices involved when weighing the pros and cons of starting a business.  There’s no cut and dried answer — a lot of it depends on how certain you are about your future career plans.  Are you seriously considering business school?  Do you want to take a job after graduating, or are you more interested in having a sustainable business already built?  How much appetite for risk do you have?  All of these questions are vital to consider before creating a small business in college.

Success or failure?

Of course, the vast majority of startup businesses fail in their first couple of years.  This observation has been borne out by our clients’ experience.  Many founded businesses in college that never became profitable.  Others made small profits, but the founders lost interest and moved on to other things.

There’s nothing wrong with failing, particularly failing boldly — and starting your own small business is always a bold step to take.  The important thing is that you are able to articulate WHY you failed in a way that demonstrates maturity and responsibility.  Blaming your friends and bad luck is going to kill your chances at HBS, but identifying one or two valuable leadership takeaways that you made use of in subsequent endeavors shows that you know how to turn lemons into lemonade.

If your business is still operating and profitable, it’s important not to ‘declare victory’ — after all, if you were so completely satisfied with the results, why would you be applying to business school?  Instead, either explain how the business will play into your future career plans or how you plan to scale it back over time.  Don’t leave schools guessing about your intentions.

Resume considerations

From an admissions standpoint, a startup on a resume is a good thing — it shows initiative and dedication.  The risks come when applicants start trying to massage their startup experience and make it seem bigger than it actually was — no one likes a braggart — or, more commonly, applicants are ashamed of their ‘failure’ and try to minimize the role their startup played in their growth and maturity.

The smart applicant will walk a middle ground between these extremes, assessing his strengths and weaknesses as a leader honestly and pointing out how they contributed to her business outcomes.  In this way, startup experience becomes an attractive resume item that shows a candidate’s diverse abilities.  

Relationships

Starting a business with someone is an acid test of a friendship and a potential professional partnership.  One great reason to start a small business, therefore, is to find potential partners that you enjoy working with and would like to work with again in the future.

This doesn’t only go for the big fish, by the way.  Relationships with vendors, suppliers and B2B entrepreneurs can all help you the next time around.  For this reason alone, many startup ‘failures’ are worth their weight in gold.

Don't be shy! Schedule a consultation to find out how we can help you.


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Delaware recently announced the creation of a “Public Benefit Corporation” with a dual responsibility to its shareholders and stakeholders in its business (like customers and suppliers).  27 states have since followed suit.  This fascinating new option for socially conscious business between non-profit and for-profit models offers new options for MBAs to consider when evaluating their career goals.

 

Social enterprise is hot.  In the past 20 years, according to Minnesota Bench Bar, it has blossomed into a full-fledged sector of the American market.  Social enterprises today are estimated to produce nearly 3.5 percent of United States GDP,1 and employ more than 10 million Americans, not to mention the roughly 5 percent of all Americans who report being involved in social entrepreneurship in some capacity.2   The growth of this sector is likely to continue increasing exponentially as pressure from stakeholders, entrepreneurs, and investors has grown tremendously since the 1990s.  In this socially conscious environment, the emergence of a corporate form designed to spur social innovation, the benefit corporation,3 was inevitable.  As of the summer of 2014, benefit corporation statutes have been passed in 27 states, with another 14 legislatures actively considering such legislation.4 

 

The first ninety days of PBC implementation have shown some interesting trends, according to this Georgetown Law study.  For instance, the paper concludes that 30 percent of these companies could have incorporated as non-profits instead, and that a very large percentage (3/4ths) are early stage companies with an obvious ‘green’ or ‘organic’ angle to them.  All of this is pretty much in line with what one would expect in the early going, but it’s nice to have it quantified nevertheless.  From an MBA standpoint, this probably means that you wouldn’t use the PBC status for your new Walmart-staple consumer goods business, but you might use it for your Whole-Foods targeted synthetic beet startup.

 

The fact is, however, even though this is where PBCs are beginning, there’s no reason to believe this is where they will ultimately wind up.   The possibilities are considerable.  For instance, the hot new social network Ello assumed a PBC status in order to guarantee that it would never be required by any future purchaser to show ads.  This is a great example of how PBC status can be a huge leg up for a business trying to enter an already saturated market like social networking, and would be well worth considering for MBAs trying to find an innovative way of framing their entrepreneurial goals.

 

So which schools are likely to be the most receptive to PBC-oriented entrepreneurs?  Well, of course, there are the usual suspects when it comes to Social Enterprise like Stanford, Kellogg and Ross – but your application will stand out far less in an environment where do-gooderism is almost de rigeur.  On the other hand, schools like Wharton and MIT Sloan have exciting initiatives in this area but are often overlooked by socially conscious MBA-seekers.

 

No matter where you apply, remember that a socially conscious business is still a business.  You’re not applying to the Kennedy School for an MPA here.  Don’t try to sell the committee on how good of a guy you are, or how your idea is going to make so many little children happy – instead, focus on sustainability and benefiting all parties involved roughly equally.  Make a thoughtful, sensible pitch instead of trying to tug on a committee’s heart strings.  And consider whether PBC status might add to the case you are trying to make. 


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Just what the world needed, another ranking of top MBA programs! In all seriousness, though, M7 Financial's new ranking, which divides the schools into tiers based on the cost of financing an education vs the amount of debt incurred, has some unique aspects which make it worthy of a second look.

To paraphrase Poets and Quants, the M7 Financial MBA Creditworthiness Ranking awards schools ratings of A+ to C grades based on the a “leverage ratio”–the average student indebtedness divided by average starting salary and bonus–and a “debt service coverage ratio”–the average starting salary and bonus divided by the estimated annual principal and interest payments on a ten-year student loan.

Because its methodology is so distinctive, the ranking produced some interesting and at times slightly ridiculous results. No one is likely to choose Wisconsin or Arizona State over Harvard or Stanford any time soon. And there are good reasons for that. This ranking, which supposedly evaluates a schools financials, only looks at first-year salaries and employment levels, and does not acknowledge to what degree employment levels are actually factoring into the ranking. What about five years after graduation? What about 10? What about students who choose to switch careers in their 30s or 40s? What about students who have to work overseas for a long period of time? All of these are important factors in any financial decision, and none of them are dealt with in this ranking. And then, of course, there's quality-of-life, which is difficult to assess in any sort of ranking.

So what we are left with are starting salaries, which admittedly are strikingly similar across the board, especially compared to law schools, and debt ratios, which have much more variation.  Which brings us to the most valuable aspect of this new system; the new light it throws on really excellent programs that never seem to get the attention they deserve.  Brigham Young's Marriott school, Rochester's Simon School, Texas McCombs and many other programs are given A rankings and show very high rates of employment after graduation and good compensation packages. Students who have to take on a lot of debt to finance MBA should take a serious second look at some of these schools as safeties.


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If you're like most students planning to apply to medical school, you have a pre-med advisor or committee to help guide you through the maze of conflicting requirements and expectations that is medical school admissions.  But what if you're one of the unlucky ones who doesn't?  Or what if you simply can't get your advisor on the phone?  That's where we come in. 

This case study looks at three schools (HMS, Johns Hopkins and Tufts) requirements, pointing out where they are similar in where they are different. The results may surprise you -- read on.

Basic prerequisites. All three schools expect that you hold a BS or BA. All three of the schools emphasize that they don't care what your major was, as long as you fulfill the prerequisites. All three schools strongly prefer students to have completed their undergraduate work in the United States, although Harvard will consider foreign students if they have completed at least one year of American University work. Johns Hopkins specifically states that they will consider community college credit, although they encourage students to take advanced courses and related subjects once they get into a four-year school. The other two schools do not state this. Harvard expresses a strong preference for interdisciplinary courses, probably because they have so many prerequisites that it would be almost impossible to achieve them all otherwise.

Standardized Tests: All three schools require the MCAT, and for foreigners, the TOEFL as well.
Biology.  All three schools require one year of biology. None of the schools will accept AP credit to fulfill this requirement. Both Harvard and Tufts say that biochemistry is now required.

Chemistry. Johns Hopkins requires one and a half years. Both Harvard and Tufts require two. All of the schools require organic chemistry. Johns Hopkins and Tufts clearly place a strong emphasis on laboratory work. Interestingly, Harvard specifically deemphasizes laboratory work, saying they would rather see you put your time into other activities.  They do, however, add that active, sustained participation in faculty-mentored laboratory research experiences is encouraged and can be used to meet requirements for the acquisition of laboratory skills.

Humanities.  These are the requirements that vary most widely between schools.  Harvard expects 16 hours, Johns Hopkins 24 hours, and Tufts simply states that a competency in spoken and written English is required, with no specifics on courses.

Math.  All three schools expect competency in calculus, but all three schools allow it to be achieved via AP credit. All three schools also recommend or require statistics, and will not accept AP credit.
Foreign Language. Both Harvard and Johns Hopkins strongly recommend that the student achieve basic conversational skills in a foreign language.

Extras.  Johns Hopkins places an emphasis on teamwork, and states that a significant experience requiring teamwork is expected in the course of the applicant’s academic and/or extracurricular activities and should be documented in the application.

Have some questions about your target school?  Contact us -- we can help.


Monday, February 09, 2015

How to choose between HBS and Stanford

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One of the most interesting parts of Bloomberg’s new poll analysis, which explores what students choose when trying to decide between two schools, is how much students are currently favoring Stanford over Harvard. This is obviously a huge change from 20 or even five years ago, and really shows how landscape is shifting. That said, the choice may not be as cut and dried as it seems from those numbers.

When you’re talking about deciding between offers from two schools as prestigious as Harvard and Stanford, rankings really should not enter into the debate. Both are obviously top programs, enough said. There are, however, some important factors you can use to decide between the two, should you be fortunate enough to get offers from both.

Go to Stanford if:

You are interested in entrepreneurship. Of course, this is the most obvious reason to choose Stanford over Harvard. This is also not as clear-cut a choice as it once was. Boston has an exceptional startup scene now, and the rock Center accelerator program offer substantial scholarships and in some cases loan assistance. But, Silicon Valley was and is the absolute heart of the innovation economy, so Stanford is still the best place for entrepreneurs.

You want to focus on your soft skills. Touchy-feely is not just a class a Stanford, it’s a way of life. Intense group therapy are not words you usually hear applied to business school classes. Stanford education will not simply teach you how to run a successful business, it wants to teach you how to be a better person.

You like the weather. Okay, obviously this is a little reductive, but hear us out, because the weather is not just the weather. A warm, welcoming, open environment, both physiologically and socially, is exactly what some people need to do their best work. On the other hand, people who are more introverted might not like that experience.

Go to Harvard if:

You want to work in a place or industry that recruits there. Again, this might seem obvious, or it might seem like a wash. After all, most top companies recruit at both Stanford and Harvard.  Yes and no.  The fact is, Harvard has been around a long time, and has been on top for a long time. The school has established relationships with certain companies, coming in and going out. So if you’re looking for that more traditional track to certain positions of power in Private Equity, banking or politics, Harvard is a better choice.

You want a degree that will travel. The old cliché about Harvard students (that they like to say they went to school in Boston) is true. There’s also a good reason for it. People treat you differently when they know you went to Harvard.  That is more true of Harvard than any other school. And while you might not want to intimidate friends and random acquaintances, if you do a lot of overseas work, or if you plan on changing jobs, careers or fields more than once throughout your life, it's probably the place for you.  Having Harvard on your resume changes the entire rest of your career in a way that no other degree does.

You are focused on achievement. Harvard is not known as a place to make close friends, although that can sometimes happen.  The cluster structure and the rigorous first-year curriculum mean that you will be working pretty darn hard, and you might not like all the people you’re working with. However, if you like working hard, if you’re at your best when you’re being pushed and challenged to get everything done, this can be the perfect warm-up for high achieving career. Just get ready to kiss a lot of free time goodbye, if you had any to begin with!

Those are the most important reasons we would suggest you choose Stanford over HBS, or vice versa. There are many many more, but they won’t all fit in a blog post, so feel free to contact us if you have questions.


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Photo by Amy, Article by Ben Feuer
 

The dreaded MCAT test; six hours of academic torture, followed by six weeks of equally torturous waiting. So just how concerned should you be about earning a top score on your MCAT? We would be happy to explain.

Every student applying to allopathic (MD) medical school must take the MCAT. Unlike with business school and certain other types of degrees, there is no substitute test that can be used in place of it. Generally speaking, it is wiser to only take the test once, since all scores must be submitted to the school. There are obviously exceptions.

Since medical school applications have risen in recent years, the MCAT has become more important because it is the most efficient way for schools to weed out large numbers of candidates. 

Here are some of the basic facts you need to know about the MCAT, and how important it really is.

All allopathic (MD) medical schools have MCAT cutoffs, but where that cutoff lies varies by school and by year.

For all intents and purposes an MCAT score below 25 will make it almost impossible for you to gain admission to allopathic (MD) medical schools. You will still be competitive for osteopathic medical schools, podiatry schools and Caribbean medical schools.

For some of the more prestigious medical schools in the country, the minimum MCAT score is around 30 to 32 - below which you will not make it past any screening for interviews, regardless of how strong the rest of your application is.

This is the conventional wisdom, although the medical school establishment is working to counteract it. In 2008, 2009, and 2010, the AAMC polled students to determine what their GPAs and MCAT scores were, then compared that to whether they were accepted to medical school.  One important caveat here; the study evaluated whether the students were accepted to ANY school, not to their first choice school. The data showed that approximately eight percent of applicants with UGPAs ranging from 3.80 to 4.00 and MCAT total scores ranging from 39 to 45 were rejected by all of the medical schools to which they applied. In contrast, about 18 percent of applicants with UGPAs ranging from 3.20 to 3.39 and MCAT scores ranging from 24 to 26 were accepted by at least one school.

The MCAT matters more for getting an interview than it does for getting admitted.

In 2007, Kaplan test prep reported that in a survey sent to all allopathic medical schools (about 125 at the time) and admissions officers from 83 schools responded. 77% of the responding schools reported that GPA was the first or second factor considered in applications.

75% of the responding schools reported that MCAT was the first or second factor considered in applications. This implies that about 75% of the MD schools consider GPA and MCAT to the first two factors considered in an application.  Letters of recommendation and community service round out the top five most important factors in determining admission.

Yet, the five most important pieces of data for making offers of acceptance are, in order:

1) Interview recommendation

2) Letters of recommendation

3) Science and math GPA (BCPM)

4) Medical community service

5) Cumulative GPA

Clearly, once you pass a certain threshold, the numbers become less important and other factors are weighed more highly.  In the words of one Dean of admissions at a top 10 school, "As much as we hate to turn away that 40/4.0 student in terms of our average numbers, if (s)he is an arrogant jerk they are gonna have to go somewhere else. We use the interview to screen out the arrogant jerks."

The advantages of a high MCAT score tail off after a certain point.

In 2012, a score of 25.2 puts you at the 50th Percentile. A score of 31.6, one standard deviation from the mean, corresponds with the 84th Percentile, and a score of 38, two standard deviations from the mean, corresponds with the 99th Percentile.

Obviously, even top schools cannot fill their ranks exclusively with 99th percentile MCAT students. Nor would they want to; diversity is an important factor in every school’s admissions policy. In fact, if you do have exceptionally high numbers, it is important to project humility and concern for others even more strongly than an average or above average student, to offset the impression of arrogance. Might not seem fair, but it is reality. Ultra smart students face a certain amount of prejudice, partly due to jealousy, and partly due to the fact that a lot of really smart people are arrogant.

A high MCAT score can compensate for a low GPA, or vice versa.

The GPA reflects how seriously an applicant has taken his or her undergraduate studies. A high GPA is a reflection of strong study habits.  Obviously, not all GPAs are created equal. Medical schools love to see high science GPA’s, in particular.

Generally, anything above a 3.5 GPA is considered very good and very competitive. Jumping from a 3.0 GPA to a 3.5 GPA will make a huge difference in someone's application, whereas jumping from a 3.5 GPA to a 4.0 will not be quite as dramatic (although it is obviously an advantage to have a 4.0 versus a 3.5 GPA) -- unless that candidate has a low MCAT score. Then, that extra boost to GPA can really matter a lot.

Conclusions

So, do you need a 35 or not?  That depends on what you are trying to achieve. If you want to get into a top school, you will need at least a 33 or 34 to clear their cutoffs.  From that point on, the other factors in your application will begin to matter more and more. If you just want to get into a medical school period, then you should make sure to study enough beat the 50% mark and focus more on other factors that are easier to control, such as recommendations and community service.  If you cannot clear a 24, then you should probably choose a different type of school; there are many types of medical schools that are not as concerned with MCAT scores.

SUPPLEMENTARY SOURCES INCLUDE:

https://www.aamc.org/download/261106/data/aibvol11_no6.pdf

https://benchprep.com/mcat/prep/what-is-a-good-mcat-score

https://ulife.vpul.upenn.edu/careerservices/blog/2012/01/09/is-it-all-about-my-grades-and-mcat-score/

http://www.startmedicine.com/app/gpamcat.asp


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With all the great articles being written and published every single day, how do you know which ones are worth your time? Fortunately, you have us to comb through and pull out the most interesting tidbits of the week. And here they are! 

The beleaguered field of legal education suffers another body blow in this fascinating Bloomberg article. The graphics clearly show that law students with very little chance of securing high-paying jobs wind up paying more for their degrees than the more desirable high-LSAT students.  If you have any intention of going to law school, get that LSAT up.

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-01-21/are-you-paying-too-much-for-law-school-#r=hpt-fs

New Jersey will be getting its first private medical school, and Seton Hall will be its location. This story has continued to develop over the past few weeks, and so far everybody seems to be on board. Of course, this is still many years away, but for those of you who will not be applying to medical school for another few years, this is worth keeping your eye on.

http://www.thesetonian.com/news/view.php/859094/Seton-Hall-community-reacts-to-proposed-

Senators Lamar Alexander and Michael Bennet have proposed a re-instatement of the year-round Pell Grant for students who want to finish college in three years instead of four.  For those of you who continue to struggle with how to finance your degrees, this should be something you get out there and support. Perfect or not, is one more way for you to get your education financed.

http://www.rollcall.com/news/the_case_for_year_round_pell_grants_commentary-239648-1.html

A fascinating piece about the day we lost sight of what “Liberal Arts” meant.  We at Forster-Thomas work on the practical side of admissions for the most part, helping people get into their dream schools, but we do enjoy musing about the overall direction of higher education from time to time.  This article explores in depth how the pursuit of the almighty dollar may have limited the potential of a college education in recent years.

http://chronicle.com/article/The-Day-the-Purpose-of-College/151359/

As always, if you have questions about your upcoming college or graduate school application, let us know – we’ll be happy to help!