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First Choice College on Helping High School Students Prepare for College

Getting prepared for college may seem like a tedious task for both parents and students. First Choice College offers a variety of innovative solutions that can help. Check out our conversation below, to learn more!


  1. Please tell us more about


First Choice College has been helping students prepare for college since 1999.  We specialize in preparing students to take standardized tests, like the SAT and ACT.  We believe that by removing the anxiety about testing and the potential obstacle of a low test score, we can help improve a student’s chances of getting accepted in a college.  We try to use our test prep to do more than just prepare a student for one test. We hope to give them the skills, strategies, and confidence to succeed in school and on any exam.  It is our belief that a quality education improves one’s chances for a successful and meaningful career, and it is our hope to expand the opportunities available to our students.


  1. What inspired you to start this college prep resource platform?


My original business partner and I were both graduates of public high schools before attending Yale.  We noticed that in high school, the top and the bottom students seemed to get a disproportionate amount of the guidance counselor’s time.  It seemed to us that the average students, who really had the largest number of colleges to choose from, tended to fall through the cracks.  I had started a summer track program after I graduated from high school and so I enjoyed working with students and saw a need to help them.  The SAT platform has evolved over the years, because that is what many families were looking for and what seemed to keep many students out of the school that they wanted to attend.  While a good score doesn’t guarantee that you get accepted at a college, a bad score can keep you out.


  1.      Why is it important for students to take SAT / ACT prep courses?


While the admission decision is not solely tied to SAT scores, oftentimes merit scholarships are heavily dependent on on test scores.  So, the higher your score, the better your scholarship.  Standardized test scores also play a large role in admission to state schools.  One survey by the College Board showed that at nearly ⅔ of competitive colleges, they agreed that a score increase of just 30 points could significantly increase a students’ chances of getting accepted.  So, higher scores mean both better chances of getting in and bigger scholarships.



  1.      You also offer tutoring sessions and bootcamps; could you please tell us more about those?

The private tutoring sessions are one-on-one, so the tutor can really focus on the student’s weaknesses, and we can develop a customized prep plan based on the student’s scores on a diagnostic test.  The bootcamp is a 2 session program.  One 3-hour session of general strategies and then a full-length practice test.  We have found that practice tests are one of the best ways for students to prepare.  We offer two practice tests a month for our students to take in the office.


  1.      You have an eBook on Amazon (awesome). Please tell us more about that.Our ebook is about how to write an outstanding college essay.  Many students don’t realize that the college admission is very different than a regular essay for one of their classes.  They also may not yet have found their voice and be comfortable speaking about themselves.  This guide is designed to show students what a good college essay looks like and how to tell their story in a way that makes them stand out from the thousands of other applicants to a college.


  1.      Future goals, we’d love to know (can be personal and / or professional)?

For the business we hope to launch ACT group classes and a self-guided ACT prep course in 2017.  We are also planning on launching a one-hour diagnostic SAT test and a two-hour test that students can take to decide which test is better for them: the SAT or the ACT.  Personally, I have the same goals I seem to have every year: to get in shape (not round), to be a better father and husband, and to contribute more to my community.

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Jan Hines

A startup nerd and compulsive writer, Jan provides streamline information on the hottest trends and news.

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