Differently 

we do 

College Counseling  

OVER 70%

of Strive to Learn Students

got accepted into their top college(s)

How To Get Started

Get connected 

Connect with us by filling out this form here.

Or call/text us at 949 873.6807 with your availability. 

2  We'll Call You

Our college admissions coordinator will  hand-match your family with a college admissions counselor that has the expertise you need.

3   Meet & Greet

Meet your college admissions counselor for a full 45 minutes for free and ask them anything you would like. 
 

Hear From Actual Students

by clicking any of the photos below 
 

define

Your path 

We'll help you find the college(s) that are right for you, no matter what stage of the application processes you're in. 

Take charge of

Your journey

Get inspired to take action through the empathetic mentorship from our college admissions experts. 

leave for

college— Ready

Confident and empowered, you'll leave for college ready to make a difference. 

What's your fit?

GOOD FORRising Juniors who are seeking wrap-around support throughout their college application journey.  

Comprehensive packages

For our students that want wrap-around support and hands-on assistance throughout their college admissions process, we offer three tiers of packages.

 SENIORS

Good for seniors desiring

wrap-around support to finish their college applications process.

Includes

UP TO 10 APPLICATIONS

COLLEGE APPLICATION DEADLINE/

TIMELINE MANAGEMENT

BUILDING A GOOD-FIT COLLEGE LIST

(2 SESSIONS)

RESUME FEEDBACK  (2 DRAFTS)

PERSONAL STATEMENT ESSAY COACHING

(5 DRAFTS)

SUPPLEMENTAL ESSAY COACHING

(3 DRAFTS PER ESSAY)

FINANCIAL AID APPLICATIONS

INTERVIEW COACHING (1 SESSION) 

SCHOLARSHIP ASSISTANCE 

 UNLIMITED IN-PERSON SESSIONS,

PHONE & EMAIL SUPPORT

Typically Starts Senior Year 

FRESHMAN &

SOphoMORE

Good for students desiring to explore their interests strategically.

Includes

ACADEMIC PLANNING 

PERSONALITY &

LEARNING STYLE ASSESSMENTS

STRATEGIC RESUME DEVELOPMENT

EXPLORING CAREERS AND MAJORS

SUMMER EXPERIANCE PLANNING

EXPLORING INTERESTS & ACTIVITIES

5 IN-PERSON SESSIONS 

 PHONE & EMAIL SUPPORT

Typically Starts End of Freshman or  Sophmore Year
MOST POPULAR

JUNIOR-SENIOR

Good for rising juniors seeking to optimize their experience  of getting into the best fitting college with wrap-around services

Includes

UP TO 10 APPLICATIONS

PERSONALITY, LEARNING STYLE, & CAREER ASSESSMENTS

COLLEGE DEADLINE/ TIMELINE MANAGEMENT

SUMMER EXPERIENCE PLANNING

BUILDING A GOOD-FIT COLLEGE LIST 

 EXTRACURRICULARS & INTERNSHIP GUIDANCE 

PERSONAL STATEMENT ESSAY COACHING (5 DRAFTS)

SUPPLEMENTAL ESSAY COACHING (3 DRAFTS PER ESSAY)

FINANCIAL AID APPLICATIONS

RESUME CREATION 

INTERVIEW COACHING (1 SESSION) 

SCHOLARSHIP ASSISTANCE 

 UNLIMITED IN-PERSON SESSIONS, PHONE & EMAIL SUPPORT

COLLEGE VISIT PLANNING

Typically Starts Winter/Spring of Junior Year
FOR

For students desiring a little more flexibility 

A La Carte Model 

For our students who want to navigate this process more independently with some expert advice when they need it.
  • Gap year research

  • Career assessment

  • College application support

  • Artist supplement

  • Creative statements

  • Creative resumes

  • Honors program applications

  • College visit planning  

  • Financial aid application support

  • Scholarship support

  • Essay support

  • Nursing supplements

  • Other special programs (i.e. BS to MD)

  • Creative Portfolios (i.e. SlideRoom submissions) 

  • Grad school counseling

  • Transfer counseling

Hourly Rates

 At our hourly rate, this service is designed to provide you with a singular focus with one topic area. 

4-hour block 

Designed to support students with one  or two areas. Perfect for students seeking support throughout their personal statements or essay drafts. 

15-hour block

Designed to support students with up to 6 different areas, this chunk of timing is great for students that have some work on their college application done, but not all of it. 

 

Create a

customized plan

based upon your family's unique needs, goals, and interests. 

strategy

Built around 

by aligning activities and resumes to match collegian values  

for Streamlined

applicatons

we'll manage all of the deadlines, so that you won't have to. 

 
 

Make College Applications Easy

with one-on-one support from experts

From helping students discover which colleges are their best fit, to their resumes and activities list, we help families throughout the college admissions application process step by step. We provide: 

  • one-on-one personalized mentorship 
  • a well-vetted list of which colleges best fit their needs
  • a customized strategy on how to approach applications
  • complete guidance on any part of the college admissions process (from helping to pick a major to ensure that your child's on track to submit everything on time.) 

 For a detailed list of all of the college admissions application steps we support our families through, check this list here

 

Writing Your College Essay?

We'll help your application stand out 

With only 5 seconds to make an impression on the college admissions advisor, you're going to want to ensure that your essay stands out. Unfortunately, too many high-achieving students throw away their opportunity with lousy grammar, cliche troupes (which includes that time abroad), and ill-planned writing. Admissions advisors are looking for essays that capture personality, illustrate values, and humbly flaunt your achievements (isn't that an oxymoron). Thankfully, that's one of our natural talents. We help brainstorm, edit, and tweak: 

  • Personal Statements

  • Supplemental Essays and Questions

  • Creative Statements

  • Curve Ball Essays Questions like "My favorite thing about last Tuesday?" 

​​

While we won't write the essay for you, we will teach you how to write an insightful and compelling college application essay in a way that lets your authentic voice shine through—no matter where you are in the essay process.

 

From GRE to PhD, We'll help you plan your Next Step

Graduate School or Transfering?

Need help finding the right program for your next step? Our graduate school counselors are experts in their field with experience and can help you navigate the high-stakes world of Graduate School Admissions. We help with:

  • Finding that perfect Masters/Doctorate/Post-Bacchorlette program 

  • Statements of Intent

  • Getting that GRE score

  • Graduate School Interviews

For our beloved transfer students that are looking for where to land next, we've got your back. From academic planning to TAG applications, we'll help find the best new college home for you. 

 

Melinda Blackman

Melinda Blackman holds a Ph.D. in psychology and has worked in the field of education for the past 25 years. She specializes in both undergraduate and graduate school college counseling. Melinda especially enjoys helping her students build a list of good fit colleges based upon their academic interests, personality and financial considerations.

Josefine Borrmann

William holds a BA in Film & Electronic Arts from CSULB, has an English teaching credential, and is one of our top college counselors. Personal experience with the complexities of college admissions, and especially with “good-fit” challenges, inspires William to help bring students strategy, focus, and professional guidance.

Amanda Merrifield holds a BA in literature from U.C. Santa Cruz and now resides in London, UK as a remote college counselor. She believes the college application process is not "one size fits all" and that every student can benefit from exploring all the possibilities. She loves working through the exciting challenges and big triumphs of the college application process.

Meet the team

 College Admissions Counselors  

William Giacchi 

Amanda Merrifield

Inspired through her own journey through a dual Bachelor’s from Chapman University as well as an MA in Visual and Media Anthropology, Josefine is passionate about helping students navigate the college admissions and test prep process. She focuses on helping students find their own voices and make this journey their own - with an expert’s guidance and mentorship. With more than 8 years of experience, Josefine helps her students build the confidence to forge their own paths through the morass of the college admissions landscape.

 
We seek to expose students to a world of opportunity in which they imagine a future that encourages them to push boundaries and purposefully create a meaningful journey towards a college centered around their core values. We do this through highly personalized mentorship with highly trained and empathetic consultants, who are focused not only on prestige but, more importantly,  on helping students find which college is their "best fit." 

Where Our Students Got In

IT's a little braggy — But hey, we're proud of our students too

 
Pomona College
California North State University
University of Southern California
University of California- Los Angeles
University of California- Berkeley
University of California- Irvine
University of California- San Diego
University of Calfornia - Santa Barbara
California Polytechic- San Luis Obispo
Reed College
San Diego State University
Occidental College
Princeton University 
University of Pennsylvania 
Vanderbilt University
Georgetown University 
Carnegie Mellon
Northeastern University
New York University
Boston University 
Emery University
University of Northern Carolina
Boston College
Villanova University
University of Chicago
Tulane University
University of Notre Dame
University of Michigan -Ann Arbor
Case Western Reserve
Kenyon College
The Chicago School
Oberlin College
Baylor University
Texas Christian University
Southern Methodist University
University of Minnesota- Twin Cities
 

Check out our blog 

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About

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resources

474 E 17th St, Suite 103

Costa Mesa, Ca 92627

​​

Tel: +1 (949) 873-6807​

© 2019 by Strive to Learn.