Welcome! If you’re a high school student (or the parent of one) and looking for help with applying to college, you’ve come to the right place! My name is Jennifer Thompson. I have worked with freshmen through seniors in all aspects of the college application process since 2008, and I can help you too. Whether you have just a few questions or don’t know where to begin, I can assist you every step of the way.

Please use the links in the menu to see services offered, my experience, rates, and how to contact me. I can help you with…

  • Researching colleges and universities to build your list of schools
  • Understanding “reach”, “match” and “safety”
  • Understanding what “fit” means
  • Reading essays
  • Reviewing applications and supplemental essays
  • Developing your calendar and to-do’s
  • Managing your timeline
  • Managing your stress!

Please contact me for a complimentary meeting (through email or by phone) to see if we’re a good fit.

Services Offered

  • College research to build your list of schools: I can look over the list you’re already considering or help you build a list from scratch. I can also suggest resources for your own research.
  • Reach, Match, and Safety: I can help you understand these categories in terms of grades, honors and AP classes, test scores, extracurriculars, demonstrated interest, cost of attendance, etc.
  • Understanding “fit”: I can help you figure out what’s important to you when choosing a college.
  • Early Decision and Early Action: I can help you understand what these are and decide whether or not they make sense for you.
  • Essay reading: I can proof for grammar and punctuation as well as offer suggestions on readability and structure. I can also give you feedback on how your essay portrays you as a person and suggestions for helping you make an impact with what you write. I will not write or rewrite any of your work; your voice and ideas will remain true to you.
  • Extracurriculars: I will help you organize and describe your ECs.
  • Review of applications and supplemental essays: I will offer an extra set of eyes to make sure everything is complete and error-free.
  • Calendar and to-do’s: I will help you identify key deadlines and tasks based on your list of schools, early decision and early action deadlines, and so on.
  • FAFSA and CSS Profile: I can help you understand the basics of these financial aid forms and their deadlines.
  • For Rising Seniors: Summer college essay workshops

In addition to those more concrete services, I promise to…

  • Help you manage your timeline, including reminders (friendly nagging!) when deadlines are approaching.
  • Help you manage your stress! Sometimes it helps to have someone else on your side when things feel overwhelming.
  • Offer text and email access for urgent questions.
  • Offer personalized support throughout the process.

For younger students (9th – 10th) I can help you understand the UC and CSU a-g requirements, go over extracurriculars, choose classes, discuss summer options, review the timing of the PSAT, SAT, ACT and/or Subject Tests, and help you get and stay organized as you start thinking about college.

Please contact me for a brief (10-15 minute) complimentary meeting to see if we’re a good fit! A good rapport is essential, as is a level of trust, and that goes both ways. I want you to feel comfortable working with me, and I want to feel comfortable working with you as well. You’re looking for help and you’re reaching out to someone like me to get that help. If we have clear communication and realistic expectations, our working relationship will be a successful one!

I live in Ventura, CA and work with all students virtually (Zoom and shared Google docs and sheets make everything much easier!).

Rates and Packages

Do any of these sound like you?

  • You’re a parent who didn’t go to college in the U.S. and is unfamiliar with the process
  • You’re feeling overwhelmed and don’t even know where to start
  • You’re a family where both parents work (or a single-parent household working full-time) and just need some help with managing the deadlines and tasks
  • You’re a parent or student who either doesn’t enjoy research or doesn’t have enough time for it and would like some help finding the needed information
  • You’re a student who simply needs someone with less emotional attachment than your parents to help be the task-master!

We can work together to build a package that fits your needs and your budget. Many families just need an hour or two to get their questions answered. We can meet periodically and we can use email, text, Zoom, or phone calls for questions that come up. This is an excellent choice for freshmen and sophomores as well as students who have specific needs (developing a list, help with essays, etc.) and are not seeking help with the overall process. (If you later decide to pay for a package, your initial hours will be applied to that cost.) Hourly Rate: $75

If you want something more comprehensive, you can select from one of the following options. For one fee I’ll help you/your student with everything listed in each description. We don’t track time; I work with your student as much as they need.

Senior Year (Early- to mid-August through May 1): Review college list and suggest changes as necessary, or help you get one created; discuss Early Action and Early Decision possibilities; review Common App, UC, and other essays; plan for SAT/ACT/Subject Tests if needed; help with “brag sheet” and/or resume; help with selecting teachers for letters of recommendation; assist as necessary with filling out applications (you’ll still do the work but I’m available to clarify anything that’s confusing!); reminders about key deadlines; help with local scholarship opportunities; help with selecting schools from acceptances; other personalized help as needed! Inquire for pricing.

Junior Year, Summer, and Senior Year (Beginning any time junior year): Help with determining what you want from a school (size, location, program, public/private, etc.); help with researching potential schools; PSAT score review; SAT/ACT/Subject Test advising; transcript review; support with writing drafts of Common App, UC, and other essays; and all of the senior year items listed above. Inquire for pricing.

Junior Year or Summer (Beginning any time junior year through early August): Help with determining what you want from a school (size, location, program, public/private, etc.); help with researching potential schools; PSAT score review; SAT/ACT/Subject Test advising; transcript review; support with first drafts of Common App, Coalition, and/or UC essays. Inquire for pricing.

Summer College Essay Workshops for Rising Seniors: Please see this page for more information about this workshop that blends group instruction with individual consultations, all done online.