• Beth & Tim Manners

University Business: "High schools students who want to see colleges and universities up close must largely view them through a set of scripted virtual tours. But what if they could get a glimpse of campus from an insider, someone who could give them the straight dirt – key pieces of not-so-filtered information? It’s happening, thanks to college-age students who are going live on Instagram (@NSHSS) and giving their take on the unique places and happenings that may not be seen on those university virtual tours. Called 'Campus Takeovers,' It’s part of a new project launched by the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS)."

"Two spots have already been done by students – Jay Farrel at the Florida Institute of Technology and Lauren Marquez of the University of California, Riverside. Next up are visits Thursday to Colorado State, Friday to Cornell, Monday to St. Michael’s College and next Friday to Florida Southern. The NSHSS plans to continue them as long as its student members are contributing."

"These are not run-of-the-mill virtual tours or strict walkarounds of the exteriors of campus buildings. These are phone-driven Instagram takes, often with very different looks and commentary." Karen Kane of NSHSS comments: “It’s a little raw. It’s a student or two walking around with their phone in their hand, visiting the points on their campus and talking about it. It’s a little bit more authentic than what you might find from a canned marketing video.”

  • Beth & Tim Manners

Forbes: "Have you ever wondered what the top colleges and universities would look like if they were ranked based on alumni ratings? Thanks to a recent study derived from the largest source of representative surveying of college graduates, we have a sneak peek into what it might look like. Although you’ll see some familiar names, there are also many surprises ... The data analyzed come from 146,345 college graduates from 2,989 colleges and universities .. based on answers to a series of questions ... such as: You received a high-quality education; You would recommend the educational path you took to other people; You would not be where you are today without your degree; You learned important skills during college courses that you use in your day-to-day life; Your education was worth the cost; If you had to do it all over again, you would attend the same institution."

Here are the top 25 colleges and universities according to alumni ratings: 1) Princeton University; 2) Yale University; 3) Massachusetts Institute of Technology; 4) University of Maryland – Baltimore; 5) Duke University; 6) University of Virginia; 7) United States Military Academy; 8) Cornell University; 9) Harvard University; 10) Northwestern Business College; 11) University of La Verne; 12) Colorado School of Mines; 13) Wheaton College; 14) Vanderbilt University; 15) Johns Hopkins University; 16) Emory University; 17)Stanford University; 18) Rice University; 19) Tufts University; 20) Lesley University; 21) Texas A&M University – Kingsville; 22) Azusa Pacific University; 23) University of Chicago: 24) University of California – Berkeley; 25) University of Southern California.

"Remarkably, the tuition range among this top 25 is more than 6x from the least expensive (Texas A&M-Kingsville at $9,136 for in-state students) to the most expensive (University of Chicago at $60,522). This point is a great illustration of what the study also found in debunking the myth that price equals quality in higher education; when it comes to alumni ratings, there is no relationship between price and quality."

  • Beth & Tim Manners

MarketWatch: 'The popularity of early admissions plans is usually a surprise to Boomer and Gen X parents who attended college when maybe 10% to 15% of incoming classes came in via early decision, and they were usually the academic crème de la crème, says Robert Franek, editor-in-chief of The Princeton Review ... However, he notes that it is not unusual, certainly for Ivy League and many, many competitive schools across the country, to admit a significant percentage of their class early decision or early action, 30%, 35%, 40% or more.”

"Colleges love these plans because they make it easier for admissions offices to fill classrooms and dorms with paying customers. They also boost colleges’ all-important 'yield metric'—the percentage of admitted students who agree to matriculate ... That may be why colleges have added Early Decision 2, which follows the first round. Students who didn’t get into their favorite college under ED1 can apply to their second-choice school in ED2, which has a deadline in January."

"Traditionally students who applied for early decision came from wealthier families, because the colleges made their financial aid determinations when they sent out regular admissions acceptances and those who got in early were stuck with what the schools offered. Now, said Franek, colleges accept financial aid applications as early as October, which means that when students get early acceptances some time in December, they get their financial aid packages as well."