Mrs. Guo (Parent of Boarding School and University Applicant), Shenzhen, China

Enrolled School (Entry Year & Grade):
Woodberry Forest School, US (2012 Fall G9 entry)

Enrolled University (Entry Year & Major):
University of California, Berkley, US (2016 Fall entry)

"As April approaches, the competitive university application reaches the final stage of results release in the Untied States. The admission rate of top ranking universities are becoming lower and lower each year, but fortunately, our Stephen received several exciting offers, and chose to accept the offer by the University of California, Berkeley. Congrats!

Being accepted by UC Berkeley is an acknowledgement of his good work at Woodberry Forest School. Here I must give my thanks to Foundation Global Education. It could be much more difficult when applying to American boarding school and universities if it was not with their help in planning and coaching! Foundation has helped to make this process much more smooth and encouraging! Thank you!

Foundation helped us with boarding school application back then. It was such a pleasant and positive experience, and we trust them, we know them, therefore, we turned to Foundation again for our university application, hoping that Foundation could help us lead the way through the intensive academic and extra curricular activities in boarding school life. Foundation really did their amazing work! From course selection in the freshman year in senior high school, summer break planning, to summer program selection, etc. Foundation gave us so many useful and insightful suggestions. The counselors also have boarding school and university experiences in the States, so they even become good friends with Stephen. They share thoughts and concerns, and figure out solutions together. They joke around, and they get down to business. The equal and transparent relationship has made the process much more easier. Moreover, the faculty members and classmates at the private school are nice and friendly. They truly care how you are doing, so Stephen was able to adapt to the new environment soon enough, and start to catch up academically.

Specifically, 9th Grade is a crucial stage to adapt to the new environment, and 10th Grade is the key year in making progress academically and athletically, as well as participation in extra curricular activities, competitions, and fighting for a spot in school team, etc. It is also an important period in learning AP courses and getting a higher GPA. When it comes to 11th or 12th Grade, students start to learn and prepare for SAT, SAT 2. As for breaks, campus visits can be a good choice. There are so many great schools in the vast land of the United States, and each school has its unique features and atmosphere. If possible, families should visit dream schools both in the east coast and the west coast, so that they can get a basic idea of more schools across the country. Families are recommended to join schools’ Open Day and guided campus tours. It can be a good way to enrich their busy school life. They may find their dream school along the way, and set a target in mind.

As far as I know, academic grades as well as activity performances are key factors in reflecting a student’s capabilities and status in American boarding schools. School teachers and their students spend most time together, thus they know their students very well. Recommendation letters from boarding school teachers that are passionate and positive, together with personal essays that can reflect students’ depth of thoughts, can make an outstanding university application to the admission committee. Transcripts, SAT scores, number of AP courses, the always increasing GPAs, along with extra curricular performances, such as athletic scores and certificates, etc., are basic information for university application. If you have summer intern, longer volunteer working hours, summer program performances that can reflect strong academic capabilities, then you will have a comprehensive, authentic, and convincing application.

We submitted our university application in the first semester of 12th Grade. Our counselor Leon did a wonderful job in communicating with universities, not too rush, but still checking in within a reasonable period of time. In the final stage of application preparation, which was important but truly exhausting for both Stephen and Leon, Leon helped complete large amount of paper work, and we were all ready for the final spurt. Taking Stephen’s academic grades, interests, and all other aspects into consideration, Leon helped list out 12 universities, including reach universities, fit universities, and challenge universities. There were of course certain universities that offered a place in an early stage, which was a big relief for us. School selection is always the part that can truly represents a counselor’s experiences and professional backgrounds (both counselors within and outside of school), and this includes material preparation, submit online application, interview arrangements, and checking in results in mid March, as well as all other related areas.

In short, the application process is long, and can be painful, but is also a good experience in the life journey. This is also something that can only be well done under the cooperation between the child, counselor, and the parents. Families should be grateful when they get offers, even if it’s not their first choice, because the academic and research status in American universities are sufficient for a child to absorb and digest. There are always choices once they step into a school, and as long as they hold a positive attitude, and are eager to learn, to experience, they can alway shine.

As boarding school life comes to an end, the university offer at hand will lead us to a whole new journey. We will cherish what we have right now, and fight for a better future.

Thank you all who helped us along the way!

Thank you Foundation! Thank you for your professional ethics and dedication!"