IACAC 2017

Guiding Students through a thoughtful College List: session at IACAC 2017

For many international students applying to U.S. universities, rankings and reputation can take on an outsized role when crafting a final college list. This is often a detriment not only to the student’s success in the application process, but also their sense of purpose. This session helped counselors cut through overly influential factors and build lists based not on prestige or marketing, but the student’s personal needs and goals. 

Presenters for this session are: 

  • Arun Ponnusamy, Collegewise
  • Marie Whalen, Whitworth University
  • Wendy Bigler, International School of Asia, Karuizawa

I'll be adding my takeaways soon. 

Navigating the Arts School Application Process : IACAC Session

Students seeking a degree in the visual arts often face some unique options and challenges during their college search. In this informative exchange, representatives from four U.S. art and design schools will provide counselors with an understanding of the differences in art school degrees and curriculum; tips and tools for aiding students with portfolio preparation and submission; information on pre-college programs and why they matter so much; and data to support the arts as a viable career path.

Presenters for this session are: 

  • Angela Jones, Tufts University
  • Jolynn Vallejo, California College of the Arts 
  • Yaritza Pena, Massachusetts College of Art and Design
  • Jackson Moore, School of the Art Institute of Chicago

I'll be adding my takeaways in the comment section. 

International Students in US Boarding Schools - IACAC

It’s always been fluid, but the definition of “international student” has been complicated even further by the rapid growth of the international boarding school population in the U.S. These students often face unique challenges in the admissions process and present their own challenges to a selection process that can no longer be neatly divided between domestic and international. Admission representatives from a wide cross-section of U.S. institutions shared their experiences and advice for managing this tricky population.

The presenters for this session were: 

  • John Beck, Due West Education
  • Greg Edleman, Carnegie Mellon University
  • Caitlin Kelley, University of Alabama
  • Isthier Chaudhury, University of Rochester

My notes:

The demand for full pay international students is rising but the market is competitive. Approximately 15,000 Chinese students are in boarding schools in the US. They are adding to the pressure. An international student studying in a boarding school will be evaluated contextually since their life circumstances changed because of their move to the US. The TOEFL will be required even though students have had english-speaking education. For example, CMU wants students to collaborate in and outside of class. So if students can't communicate in English at a high level in teams they can end up impacting the experience of others. What's more, some schools have admissions from the student's parent country read the application while in others, officers that are assigned that particular boarding school read them. Who reads them also makes a considerable difference, both for better and for worse. 

IACAC Session: Extra Elements to the College Essay

In the current landscape, many admission offices have begun introducing extra elements to the review process to supplement the more traditional metrics of an application in hopes of truly achieving a holistic review. In this session, presenters looked at how several institutions are considering these non-traditional pieces of an application—like interviews, online profiles, face-to-face or virtual interactions, etc. 

Presenters of the session were: 

  • Sara Riggs, Georgia Institute of Technology
  • Nora Colman, Tulane University
  • Hebe Fuller, Elon University

I'll be adding takeaways from the session in the comments section soon. 

IACAC Session: Studying in Germany

Germany is becoming a popular destination for international students. One of the reasons for this is the solid reputation of German universities, but additional appeal comes from the fact that access to public higher education institutions in Germany is free for both domestic and international students. Applying to German universities can be confusing, often involving challenging terminology like “Hochschulzugangsberechtigung,”“Zeugnisanerkennungsstelle” and “Numerus Clausus,”particularly when it comes to admission requirements for international applicants. This session provided a short introduction to the Abitur, a discussion on the secondary school credentials required for successful admission (with case studies for IB, American high school diploma and U.K.A-level applicants), a look at the application process, as well as the different post-secondary school options students can explore. 

Presenters of the session are: 

  • Angolwisye Mwakisu, Jacobs University Bremen
  • Annette Gambach, Karlsruhe Institute ofTechnology - Carl Benz School of Engineering
  • Scott Loeffler, Frankfurt International School

My takeaways. 

Key points.

There are 53 Privates universities which are small and offer personalised advising and career services. Around 50 courses in these universities are taught in English  

The popular private schools in Germany are Jacob's, Carl Benz School of Engineering, WHU (business), EBS (general management), KIT (STEM) and Frankfurt School of Finance and Management t

~ 13500 Students from India and make up roughly 5% of the international pool.

100 bachelors programs are taught in English both in public and private schools.

Private schools are not subsidised and there is tuition. Cost of attendance at Jacobs is Euro 26000 per annum

KIT 25000 per annum

Living expenses could be approx euro 1000 per month.

Your go to website for information about programs taught in English is Daad International

Admission requirements for traditional public universities in Germany:

School transcripts and school leaving certificate. Use the

Anabin Database to check evaluation document requirements and translation formalities.

The evaluation is focused on the last two years of school. Only junior and senior years transcripts are sent.

IB students must do Math or a Science course at HL

IB students are required to get a minimum of 4 in all subjects. Minimum of 24. One 3 can be balanced by one in same level.

Students must do a second language at SL or HL. Ab ignitio courses don't qualify. 

German Arbitur conversion table has 1.0 at the top equivalent to  42-45 IB points. 4.0 is the lowest qualification 24 points.

Proficiency in German is not a requirement.

They don't consider predicted grades and students have to apply with actual scores in July.

For evaluation of other curriculums like AP, A-levels or national curriculum schools check the Anabin database.

The private schools on the other hand have a more holistic process.

Deadlines for winter semester for public schools:

Applications window 1 June to 15 July

Notifications are sent in August or September

International students must apply through www.uni-assist.de

Career opportunities after graduation.

Students have 18 months to look for a job and on a Job Seeking visa. They have unrestricted access to German labor market. PR is granted once you have a job.