by Dr. Trama - Tuesday, January 28th, 2014 College Preparation & Planning, Collegiate Success

When it comes to choosing a consultant for your child’s education, there are many factors that are important to consider. It is important to look past any of the glitz that might be presented by advertising (though this is true for any investment), and instead get to the substance of the individual or firm with whom you are meeting. While you may be willing to be a guinea pig for your nephew who is starting his own business, when meeting with an educational consultant it is better to opt for someone who has the experience that such an important decision demands. Sarphatie Education and its founder and president, Jacque Trama, provides her vast experience to all its clients, enabling them […]

by Andy Klingenberger - Thursday, August 1st, 2013 College Preparation & Planning

There’s plenty of advice available to parents about when to have The Talk with their children. (If you’re a parent reading this, you undoubtedly know which one I’m referring to, and if you’re a child reading this and you don’t, well, ask your mother.) But as your son or daughter gets ready to make the transition from high school to college, there is another talk you should have with them that goes beyond your expectations for him and her while they’re away. Arming your child with the basics about college life is important, and will help him or her with this large life change. Let’s look at some of the things you might want to discuss before you unload their […]

by Dr. Trama - Friday, December 7th, 2012 College Preparation & Planning

The fact that it is easier for children to learn a second language (or third, or fourth, etc.) earlier in life is well known at this point. Only 25% of elementary schools even OFFERED foreign language instruction in 2008, but there is increasing support for more comprehensive foreign language instruction and education in K-12 schools. “People who speak a foreign language tend to make more money. Something like 3 percent on average regardless of the field…” If you knew you could have essentially a three percent raise regardless of what career path you took, would you have signed up for it? Would you sign your children up for it? In a society that is increasingly diverse, and with the economy […]

by Dr. Trama - Tuesday, September 4th, 2012 College Preparation & Planning

With the start of another school year upon us, it’s time to think about college applications. But where to start? There are literally thousands of options available to you. How do you narrow your list down? Here are some of the ways that we’ve found to be helpful when you’re figuring out where to apply. 1. What Type Of School Do You Want? This might seem like an obvious statement, but it’s an important one. By “type” we don’t mean “party school” or “non-party school;” instead, there are certain demographics that can be used to find schools that will be a good fit. First, are you looking for a four-year school, or a community college? Are you looking for a […]

by Dr. Trama - Thursday, July 26th, 2012 Admissions & Acceptance, College Preparation & Planning

Volunteer work. If you’re a high school student, or the parent of a high school student, you already know the importance of consistent, relevant volunteer work when it comes to the college application process. But beyond the “necessity” of volunteering in order to present yourself as a well rounded individual to the colleges to which you are applying, volunteer work is an important enrichment tool for both teenagers and their families. While many students volunteer in areas they are already interested in, students who are unsure about what they might want to study when in college can have interests sparked through their volunteer work. Volunteer work is a good way for families to spend additional time with one another. With […]

by Dr. Trama - Thursday, July 19th, 2012 College Preparation & Planning

Recently I met with a family regarding financial aid for the coming year for their daughter, who was going into her first year in college in the fall. The financial aid process can be confusing, to say the least. This particular family, on their most recent tax return, had an Adjusted Gross Income of over $200,000. The student hadn’t received very much of a financial aid offer, and the parents were incredulous that the school wanted them to contribute over $25,000 for their student’s first year of school. The parents maintained that they simply did not have the money the school thought they should be able to contribute. With that situation in mind, I thought it would be a smart […]

by Dr. Trama - Wednesday, June 27th, 2012 College Preparation & Planning

When next winter rolls around, we’ll have a more in depth look at the Financial Aid process and how to best navigate it. For now, however, since most students have received their financial aid awards, we’re going to talk a little about making sure your bill for the coming year is covered. Some students will find, for whatever reason, that the amount of aid they have been awarded will not cover the whole cost of the coming year. If that’s the case, private loans are one option available for students to pay their bill for the year. Because private loans tend to have higher interest rates than federal loans, they are best viewed as a last resort, only when all […]

by Dr. Trama - Friday, June 22nd, 2012 College Preparation & Planning

You brought your daughter’s clothes and possessions to her new dorm room, and now you’re carrying empty bins back to your car.  You’re driving cross state while your son tries to figure out which poster is going over the bed, and which is going over the desk.  Every parent experiences a moment when they realize their college-bound child won’t be coming home. Letting go is difficult, but that doesn’t mean the reality of it should be ignored – by either the parent, or the student.  Parents and students should make a conscious effort to ease the transition between high school and college.  The summer after senior year, a potentially drawn-out goodbye, can be structured to prepare everyone for the coming […]

by Dr. Trama - Wednesday, June 20th, 2012 College Preparation & Planning, Collegiate Success

Between the excitement of graduating high school and the anticipation of embarking on your college career there lies two glorious months of summer.  Finally, some time to yourself to enjoy the weather, friends and countless other carefree activities, right? WRONG. The summer before your first year of college will allow for plenty of time to partake in the aforementioned activities, but you’re doing yourself a disservice if all you do is relax and hang out with friends.  Ideally, this summer should be a blend of nostalgia and preparation.  So fondly remember your high school years and spend time with the people that contributed to your best memories, but also do the following: Visit your college roommate You will know who […]

by Dr. Trama - Monday, June 18th, 2012 College Preparation & Planning

You’ll know what to do with your summer if you take a moment to consider what motivations all admissions officers hope to discover within their future students.  First, remember that colleges see their mission as developing minds, and stimulating intellectually-grounded lifelong relationships.  (Making students workforce-ready is a secondary goal.)  So, they most desire students who pursue knowledge, at least in part, for intrinsic reasons.  Students who are intellectually active during the summer, in some institutional capacity, demonstrate the sort of intrinsic motivation that colleges desire. College applicants stand a better chance if they have demonstrable, self-selected, intellectual interests on their resume. Choosing to engage in summer learning opportunities best demonstrates your commitment to your interests.  If you’re history-buff, volunteer at […]