Advice for Class of 2021

The College Scoops Podcast

Episode 11: Advice for the Class of 2021 with Deena Maerowitz

June 30, 2020

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The Spring of 2020 has brought about many changes for college admissions and with that comes many questions from parents and students about what now? Where do we start and what should our focus be if we have a rising senior? Deena will be discussing the changes in college admissions due to the pandemic including the submission of ACT/SAT scores to test-optional schools, approaches to the common application, advice for the Class of 2021, and what Deena wishes she knew before attending college.

Our guest today is Deena Maerowitz, a partner at The Bertram Group in Westport Connecticut. Deena has had a multifaceted career, including experience in graduate admissions and working in the public policy arena around education. As an educational consultant with The Bertram Group, Deena advises students throughout the entire college admissions process, planning both undergraduate and graduate educations. Her clients have been admitted to Ivy League and top tier colleges throughout the United States.

Key Takeaways:

  • How to answer the question on the Common App about what you did as a student during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Testing: Should students still take the SAT and ACT if more and more colleges are test-blind and test-optional?
  • Focus on doing things within your control
  • Tips for a successful Common App
  • How to research colleges online and which resources are available and most useful
  • Why being proactive is nearly essential to the process
  • Staying wary of bias in the online resources published by the college or university themselves
  •  Why where you go matters less than what you do when you get there
  • Creating independent students and children to send off to college to succeed and thrive

Important Resources and Links:

The Bertram Group Website, Facebook

Meet Deena Maerowitz

The Bertram Group
Deena graduated magna cum laude from Mount Holyoke College and received her law degree and Master’s Degree in Social Work from the University of Connecticut. She has served as a Counsel in the U.S. Congress, where she focused on education issues, and in the private sector for national public interest organizations, such as the Children’s Defense Fund. Prior to becoming an educational consultant, Deena was Associate Director of Admissions at Columbia University Business School, where she reviewed hundreds of applications and gained keen insights into what makes a candidate stand out.

Thank you to Deena for joining us today. To all the students and parents of the Class of 2021 and I am one of them, we hope today’s conversation shed some light on what to focus on – mainly what you can control. There is so much out of our control yet there are many aspects of the college journey that you as a student or parent have direct control over. As you start your summer, take some time to reflect on the last couple of months and how you will incorporate that into your story. Being proactive is essential and learning what resources are available and most useful helps to alleviate unnecessary stress. Remember parents, we have worked very hard up until this point to raise independent, resilient, and hard-working kids to better prepare them not only for college but for life. They are ready. 

Episode 11 Full Transcript

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College Scoops Staff, Author

College Scoops has a team of college interns who share their insights and expertise with our community. Our team consists of editors, writers, videographers, social media experts, and storytellers who work hard to produce relevant and interesting content for students (and parents) whether they are applying to, attending or graduating from college.

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