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College Prep Resources

You may find some of the following resources useful as you navigate the college admissions process. Many of the authors listed below also have TED Talks and other online videos.


Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be: An Antidote to the College Admissions Mania
By Frank Bruni

“Upon graduation, he took a plum job in the Chicago office of the Boston Consulting Group, where he recognized one of the other new hires: the friend from New Trier who’d gone to Yale. Traveling a more gilded path, she’d arrived at the very same destination.”

Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking
By Susan Cain

“By sticking to her own gentle way of doing things, Laura had reeled in new business for her firm and a job offer for herself. Raising her voice and pounding the table was unnecessary.”

Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls
By Lisa D’Amour, PhD

“As parents, we may wish that we could clear our children’s path of any source of discomfort, but there really are no stress-free routes from infancy to adulthood; even if we could make this happen, it would not serve our children well in the long run. That said, it’s much easier to feel relaxed about the stressors when we know what to expect.”

Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance
By Angela Duckworth

“What struck Mike was that rising to the occasion had almost nothing to do with talent. Those who dropped out of training rarely did so for lack of ability. Rather, what mattered, Mike said, was a ‘never give up’ attitude.”

Teach Your Children Well: Parenting for Authentic Success
By Madeline Levine, PhD

“(Levine) shows us how to shift our focus from the excesses of hyperparenting and the unhealthy reliance on our children for status and meaning to a parenting style that concentrates on both enabling academic success as well as developing a sense of purpose, well-being, connection, and meaning in our children’s lives.” 

The Overachievers: The Secret Lives of Driven Kids
By Alexandra Robbins

“I didn’t choose to follow students for three semesters at Walt Whitman High School because it is one of the best public high schools in the United States or because it is located in Bethesda, which has been called the ‘smartest city in the country.’ I selected Whitman because in the mid-1990s in many ways I was these students …”

Who Gets In and Why
By Jeffrey Selingo

​”My hope throughout this book is that you can get a sense of what I learned during a year inside the admissions process.”

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Ethical Parenting in the College Admissions Process
From Harvard Graduate School of Education

“… a great many parents are fundamentally failing to prepare young people to be caring, ethical community members and citizens. That’s true in part because of the degree to which parents have elevated achievement and demoted concern for others as the primary goal of child-raising.”

My Son Applied to Colleges Alone: A Cautionary Tale
From Grown & Flown

“To the untrained eye (mine) it appeared the college application process would be a manageable effort for my organized self-starter. But unfortunately, my naiveté made me overlook two crucial points 1) At 16 his brain was not fully formed, and 2) At 16 he was pretty sure he was smarter than everyone around him (solid proof of #1) which really made me the idiot in this whole scenario.”

Typ0s, Repeated Words Words, And Other Signs Of Humanity On Your College Application
From Georgia Tech’s Admissions Blog

… I am without a doubt confident about this: in thousands of decisions rendered, no one has been denied for a typo … We don’t practice gotcha! admission review. By that I mean, Admission Officers aren’t cynics looking for that one mistake, a missed point on a final grade, or that one letter that’s out of place in order to cross you off the list and move on.” 

What’s Really Wrong With the College Rankings
From Inside Higher Ed

They fail to measure the quality of the academic experience.”

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