By: Rachel Fenton
University of Michigan 2015, B.A. in English

On June 16 and 17, 2015 Executive Manager of Parros College Planning Kim Parros and College Planning Counselor Lisa Schmidt attended the Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA) Conference. This year’s conference took place in Cincinnati, OH. While there, they met with many other college planning experts and industry influencers to discuss fundamentals in the college preparation process.

Discussions included a focus on specifics of the college application process and how to help students shine through the formalities of application questions and requirements. Topics discussed in these sessions included:

  • The ability to recognize how much to share in personal essays for college applications
  • Ways of eradicating the anxiety that leads students to believe “I am not a good test taker”
  • How to use what you’ve already got to shine in college application essays
  • Identifying ways to help students build and demonstrate leadership qualities
  • Ways to administer techniques designed to help reduce test stress in the face of the SAT and ACT

Other discussions centered around the student athlete and how he/she is unique as well as similar compared to non-athletes in terms of the college application process. Items covered in the sessions included:

  • The importance of being able to provide guidance to the student athlete
  • Understanding recruiting timeline and process for both NCAA and NAIA colleges
  • The importance of academics to the student athlete, particularly concerning eligibility
  • Understanding recruiting dos and don’ts for the college bound athlete
  • Knowing the differences between an official and an unofficial visit

Parros College Planning is thrilled to be a part of the Higher Education Consultant community and looks forward to returning with some fresh perspective from the conference to apply to our current practice. For more information about HECA or details from the conference, you can visit or contact Kim Parros at

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