College admissions experts: What to look for before hiring them to help your child


As a college admissions expert, Bethany Schweitzer says there's something she hears it all the time from parents who hire her to help their kids get into college.

"A lot of parents ask me, 'What can you guarantee me?' I tell them, 'At the end, I can guarantee you exactly nothing,'" she says.

She's the owner of College Ready of Worthington, where parents pay a fee to help their child become better test takers, essay writers and help them select the right college.

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"We are definitely helping them take the test, we definitely help them make their essay stand out, but we see ourselves as an educator," she says.

She says before you chose a college admissions expert, check their qualifications.

Schweitzer has a Ph.D. in Higher Education, a law degree and is a former admissions officer.

"Anybody that is making wide promises that — 'I can raise your child's ACT score by seven points' — that sounds a little fishy to me. 'I'm going to get your child into an Ivy league institution.' Great... that's not truthful," she said.

College coaching is a booming industry because Schweitzer says the pressure to get a child into a college is growing, not because of the academics per se, but the cost.

"I would say parents are scared because it's so competitive and they are also scared because it's such a big investment college is not affordable," she says.

Schweitzer says most college prep coaches will charge about $85 dollars an hour, but that can vary.

If your child is not a good test taker, there are plenty of test-optional colleges that don't require an SAT or ACT score. Click here to view a list of those schools.