why hire a private counselor? 
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      Frequently Asked Questions                              
Psychologist Helane Fruchter Linzer family therapist  ivy maven college admissions counselor  
Independent Ivy League College Admissions Pittsburgh
​​what is a "maven"? a person with deep, rich knowledge of a particular realm who finds purpose in sharing that info.​​​ 
what if  a parent wants to be their teen's coach, but wants guidance in that pursuit? i can be a thought-partner for parents: providing info, resources, insight, oversight.​in other words: coaching the parent to be their teen's college admissions coach!​​
what if i don't live in pittsburgh: can we still work together? yes.if you cannot meet in person,  i work well on the telephone supplemented with e-mail...or skype.
what about the essays--do you write them? no. i recognize that any process that forces you to examine yourself and come up with a product​(that expresses that) is fundamentally difficult. but with individualized coaching and editing suggestions ​you'll create essays that reveal, in your voice, your best self.​​
what if I'm not applying to the "ivies"--can you still help me?​you bet! i'll help you find wonderful schools where you'll thrive--academically, socially, personall. many strategies needed for successful application to the most selective schools benefit all applicants.​​

​​who are you affiliated with--the "ivy league"?​i work independently. but i can offer a seasoned, nuanced understanding of what's entailed in successful merit-based admission to extremely selective collegesandwhat to expect once on campus.​​
when is the appropriate time to contact you? :  when you first recognize that attending a top college is complicated, best approached with a plan. growth-oriented counsel that boosts top college acceptance will serve you well before...and beyond.​both HS and college experiences are enhanced by ongoing reflection & planning, with feedback.​yet: i work well with intensity, so even 12th grade is possible if you're motivated to do your part!​​
​​where have students whom you've advised been accepted? a host of wonderful colleges including: american, amherst, barnard, boston coll, boston univ, brown, bucknell, caltech, cmu, case western, clark, clemson, columbia, cornell, dartmouth, davidson, denison, dickinson, duke, emory, fordham, franklin&marshall, furman, georgetown, harvard, haverford, indiana, johns hopkins, lafayette, loyola, macalester, middlebury, muhlenberg, northeastern honors, northwestern, occidental, ohio state honors, ohio wesleyan, penn state honors, pomona, princeton, rice, sarah lawrence, skidmore, stanford, stony brook, susquehanna, swarthmore, syracuse, tufts, tulane, uchicago, umich, uminnesota, upenn, upittsburgh honors, urichmond, urochester, usc, utexas-austin, uvirginia, uwisconsin, vanderbilt, villanova, virginia tech, wake forest, washington college, washington univ. in st. louis, wharton, william & mary, williams, yale...​muchmerit $$$ has been offered as well: a potential bonus of producing a stellar app is that some top colleges offer vastly reduced tuition and "scholar" status to entice you to attend!
individualized attention: as much as you need  
accessibility: evenings, weekends, school breaks--when students typically work on essays & applications
objective third party: can put your strengths/weaknesses in perspective, with your interests in mind
relationship: ongoing support and guidance to ease pressure, encourage personal growth.
expert yet always researching: knows the colleges, the process, the people, the resources 
complementary: to what your school counselor can provide...and with total confidentiality
why hire a private counselor?

individualized attention: as much as you need.  
accessibility: evenings, weekends, school breaks--when students typically work on essays and                              applications.
objective third party: can put your strengths/weaknesses in perspective, with your interests in mind.
relationship: ongoing support and guidance to ease pressure, encourage personal growth.
expert yet always researching: knows the colleges, the process, the people, the resources.
complementary: to what your school counselor can provide...and with professional confidentiality.

​​where have students whom you've advised been accepted? 
a host of wonderful colleges including: american, amherst, bard, barnard, boston college, boston university, brandeis, brown, bucknell, caltech, CMU, case western, clark, clemson, colby, college of wooster, columbia, cornell, dartmouth, davidson, denison, dickinson, duke, duquesne, elon, emory, fordham, franklin&marshall, furman, georgetown, gwu, georgia tech, hamilton,harvard, haverford, indiana, johns hopkins, lafayette, lehigh, loyola, macalester, middlebury, muhlenberg, northeastern, northwestern, notre dame, nyu, oberlin, occidental, ohio state honors, penn state honors, pomona, princeton, reed, rice, sarah lawrence, SCAD, skidmore, SMU, stanford, stonybrook, susquehanna, swarthmore, syracuse newhouse, tcu, tufts, tulane, uchicago, UCLA, UC-Berkeley, udelaware honors, umich, umiami, uminnesota, upenn, upittsburgh honors, urichmond, urochester, usc, USNA, utexas-austin, uva, uwisconsin, vanderbilt, villanova, virginia tech, wake forest, washington college, washington univ. in st. louis, wesleyan, wharton, william & mary, williams, yale...​

much merit $$$ has been offered, too: a potential bonus of producing a stellar app is that some top colleges offer vastly reduced tuition and "scholar" status to entice you to attend! 

when is the appropriate time to contact you? 
when you first recognize that attending a top college is complicated, best approached with a plan. growth-oriented counsel that boosts top college acceptance will serve you well before...& beyond.​both HS and college experiences are enhanced by ongoing reflection & planning, with mentoring.​
yet: i work well with intensity, so even 12th grade is possible if you're motivated to do your part!​​

​​who are you affiliated with--the "ivy league?"
​i work independently. but i can offer a seasoned, nuanced understanding of what's entailed in successful merit-based admission to highly selective colleges and what to expect once on campus.​​

what if  i'm not applying to the "ivies"--can you still help me?
​you bet!  i'll help you find wonderful schools where you'll thrive--academically, personally, socially. many strategies needed to successfully apply to the most selective schools benefit all applicants.​​

what about the essays--do you write them? 
no.  i recognize that any process that forces you to examine yourself and come up with a product​(that expresses that) is fundamentally difficult.  but with individualized brainstorming and coaching and editing suggestions, ​you'll create essays that reveal, in your voice, your best self.​​

what if  i don't live in pittsburgh: can we still work together? 
yes! if you cannot meet in person, i work well on the telephone supplemented with e-mail or skype.

what if  a parent wants to be their teen's coach, but wants guidance in that pursuit?
 i can be a thought-partner for parents: providing info, resources, insight, oversight.
 ​in other words: coaching the parent to be their teen's college admissions coach!​​

​​what is a "maven"? 
a person with deep, rich knowledge of a particular realm who finds purpose in sharing that wisdom.​​​