College Application Lessons from Your Favorite Christmas Movies

Posted by Amy Hanson on 12/29/16 7:30 AM

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas, which for many of us means that our annual family Christmas-movie marathon is just around the corner.  Before you settle into your favorite spot on the couch and watch Fred Claus for the 50th time, take a few minutes to find out what holiday flicks can teach you about the college admissions process.
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Topics: Applying to College

3 Ways to Kickstart the Scholarship Application Process

Posted by Jamie Grant on 2/11/16 10:49 AM

It’s finally time: you’re thrilled to leave high school behind and dive into the exciting world of college life. In the midst of convincing your parents to let you keep the car and picking out new bedding for your dorm room, don’t forget to do your homework regarding your scholarship options.

Here are three ways to kickstart the scholarship application process.

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Topics: Applying to College

4 Secrets to the College Application Debunked: Advice from a College Admissions Counselor

Posted by Ryan Roberts on 12/24/15 10:30 AM

As a college admissions counselor, reading college applications is a rather significant portion of my job. Therefore, it can be concluded that I have seen many applications. And thus, I have a lot to say about what to include and exclude from applications, about the characteristics that separate good applications from great ones and the ways in which you can truly, WOW your admissions counselors.

Here are a few tips I can provide to those of you considering the process, halfway through it or already applied and accepted. Know there is still time to apply! The hourglass hasn’t quite dropped its last grain of sand.

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Topics: Applying to College

How to Assemble an Impressive College Application

Posted by Benjamin Wideman on 11/19/15 10:30 AM

If you’re a high school student, you’ve probably sorted through prospective colleges and picked the ones you’re going to apply to. Congrats!! Now that the hard work is done, you need to actually apply to these schools.

College applications have many different components. The actual application mostly asks about demographics and grades. There will often be an essay portion, resumes, and required letters of recommendation.

The application is often the first “look” that prospective colleges will have at you. While this can make them seem intimidating, don’t worry! Following these tips will help your application look professional and stand out to college admissions staffs.

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Topics: Applying to College

Why Private School is Within Your Reach

Posted by Jamie Grant on 11/12/15 10:30 AM

As juniors and seniors, nearly sprung from high school, surely you have begun the college decision process. One frequently dismissed option is private school—they seem to carry this stigma of being outrageously selective and expensive.

Truth is, they’re not. The private-school path is wider than you might think. Plus, as unbelievable as it may seem, bigger isn’t always better and “private” doesn’t always mean more expensive.

Here’s why:

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Topics: Applying to College

The Do's and Don't's of Researching Colleges [Infographic]

Posted by Benjamin Wideman on 10/29/15 11:55 AM


For you high school students, college searching can seem like a foreign language. And to be honest, it really is. Come junior year you are expected to know the ins and outs of the process as if you have done it several times before. No one really spells it out for you, they just assume you know. 

News flash: There is a right way and it's crucial that you follow a few basic guidelines. 

The college search is important as it sets the framework for the college decision-- one that that will effect you the next four years, and likely more. Has anyone ever told you exactly what you should and shouldn't do?

Here's an infographic to help you begin your college search the right way:

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Topics: Applying to College

10 Things I Wish I’d Known about Choosing a College

Posted by Suzanne Weiss on 3/14/15 4:00 PM

If I could re-do my college selection process, I’d approach it differently.

Since I was the first one in my family to attend college, my parents didn’t know how to help me and didn’t get involved in the selection process. We never toured colleges, discussed choices, or researched alternatives. I was unsure about my career path.

I ended up choosing the least expensive option, since no one talked to me about scholarships or loans. My freshman and sophomore years were difficult, and I felt lonely and lost.

Luckily, I “found myself” during my junior year, changed majors and got to know a group of people on campus with the same interests and career goals.

“Selecting a college can be compared to buying a pair of blue jeans,” said Jamie Grant, Executive Director of Enrollment Management at Silver Lake College in Manitowoc, Wis. “You’ll find a lot of styles, sizes, and price ranges. But remember, a good fit for your friend may not necessarily be a good fit for you.” 

To help you prevent making the same mistakes I made, I collaborated with Jamie to come up with the following helpful tips: 

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Topics: Applying to College

About This Blog

Deciding where, when and by what means to go to college can be a difficult decision process. We want to help! The Silver Lake Blog is intended to be a resource as you navigate these choices, from what type of school to choose to how to finance your education. Watch this space for helpful tips. 

For free, downloadable resources for those considering graduate or undergraduate studies, visit our resource library!

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