Excellent Advice for Senior Parents

admission imageValerie Strauss, whom I interviewed for my last piece on academic stress and advanced classes for Arlington Magazine, quotes another article with great information and advice for senior parents.  I found the information about actual college costs to be fascinating too.  Listen to this:

“For example, the cost of attending Pennsylvania State University runs about $30,000 a year for in-state students. At Swarthmore College outside of Philadelphia, it’s nearly twice that, yet Swarthmore ends up being less expensive for most students, according to one of our stories that used Tuition Tracker. How could that be? The answer is that Swarthmore is among the private liberal arts schools offering hefty discounts, bringing down the average cost to even less than taxpayer-subsidized Penn State’s.”

Really? Wow.  Read the whole article here.

Touted by The Washington Post …

I’m incredibly pleased that the renowned education reporter, Jay Mathews, has called my article on Advanced Placement and International Baccalaureate classes “one of the best pieces ever on high school academic pressure.”  I worked long hours interviewing sources, poring through data, and crafting a balanced and thorough article.  Here are Mathew’s comments, and here’s my article in Arlington Magazine.

I’m also thrilled that my article may have an impact on parents and students who often sacrifice sleep and sanity for uncertain rewards.

The Joy of “Getting All the Lovely Words Just Right”

Tomorrow I start coaching my first students of the 2014-15 College App season.  It may seem early, but I’m thrilled that they’re getting a head start and will have — at least — their 650-word, Common App essay completed before the hectic senior year starts.  Most of my students are so used to scripted writing with very specific expectations — think AP exams and DBQ’s — that they don’t realize they can have fun with their college essays.

Writing your college essay should be a process filled with insight and the joy of “getting all the lovely words just right,” as dear old Professor Cronin used to say.  The essay can be a pause in the academic rush, a moment to take a breath and reflect on who you are and who you want to be.  All colleges want students who are capable of reflection and growth. All colleges want students who can identify and share the moments that define them.

It is an honor to coach my students to express such true and lovely words.

Interested in pursuing a STEM career?

The blog, Collegewise ,which is written by professional college consultants, can be a great source of information and sanity for students approaching college and their parents. I haven’t read the whole guide (here) — my kids haven’t leaned toward STEM careers so far — but it looks very thorough and helpful.

Also, I will be coaching rising seniors over the summer on their college essays. Getting the largest one — the 650 word Common App essay — done over the summer is a fabulous idea and will significantly reduce your first semester stress.  Email me or send me a message to find out more or reserve a date.  I promise it won’t hurt.

Happy writing!

Details on My Free Talk

Writing Personal Essays for College Apps

Excellent college essays can distinguish an application from the pack, but many high school seniors feel panicked by the prospect of writing about themselves.  This free, one-hour talk will explain what college admission officers are looking for in the essays and how you can write the best personal essays possible.


What?                            A FREE one-hour talk on personal essays

For Whom?                The Class of 2015 and their parents

When?                           Tuesday, April 29th at 7 p.m.

Where?                         Arlington Central Library auditorium


Amy Brecount White is an awarding-winning  teacher, writer, and professional essay coach.

~           Certified to teach secondary English in Virginia.

~           Years of experience teaching both AP and reluctant writers.

~           Eighty articles and essays have been in The Washington Post.

~           Regular contributor to Arlington magazine.

~           Forget-Her-Nots, my novel, was published by HarperCollins.

~           Graduated with High Honors from the University of Notre Dame.

~           Earned an M.A. in English from the University of Virginia.

~           Available for one-on-one and group essay coaching.  (See website.)


Contact Expert Essay Coaching to simplify the process! 

amybrecountwhite@gmail.com or www.amybrecountwhite.com.