I would highly recommend Davida to help your child develop college application essays that showcase their talents/experiences and assist them with “standing out” from the pack. My son Nathan and I found Davida to be very insightful in terms of the overall process and most flexible in finding time to work with a very busy high school senior. We’ve known Davida for many years and her expertise in this area can be seen in the high number of her high school seniors being admitted to their top collegiate choices.
Cari, Parent, University of Michigan
Like most kids in highschool, I was dreading the time when it came to writing my college essay. Obviously, I knew how important it was but it became such a daunting task that I was avoiding working on it. This is how I came to Davida with little clue what to write my college essay on. After many phone calls where we discussed different possibilities, Davida helped me pick the perfect topic. After that, I began writing, and with all of Davida’s help the task became much easier. Not only did she help with my main Common Application essay, but she also helped me write my essays for each individual school. All this work, from both Davida and me, paid off at the end when I got into my dream school. I can honestly say that working with Davida was a pleasure. She made me feel secure and confident and made the process look easy and manageable. I am certain that I would not have ended up in the same place if it wasn’t for her support.
Noa, Solomon Schechter Day School of Long Island, University of Michigan
As I succumbed to the common trap of selectively emphasizing minor facets of my life to craft what I thought was a more appealing portrait of myself, Davida parsed out the facts from the near-facts, helping me build a better essay all the while. Yes, she did help me with tasks such as cutting to fit within word counts, grammar editing, and composing strong, interesting, and diverse opening and closing lines. More importantly, Davida went a step further, genuinely asking about what my passions, interests, and activities were to ensure that they were best mirrored on the page and that each word choice was consistent with them and my personality. This facilitated the completion of some of my best writing to date, and undoubtedly was a key factor into my acceptances at several top universities. In sum, Davida both guided and challenged me into producing essays that were not only high quality but also more reflective of my identity.
Josh, Beachwood High School, Washington University
Davida was a huge help in helping me write my college essays. She made the process easy by guiding me through the stages ranging from picking a topic to editing. Even though we worked remotely, her assistance on my Common Application essay, as well as my supplementals, undoubtedly helped me in getting into my top school.
Jared, Solon High School, Emory
Davida was incredibly helpful in assisting with my college essays. Even though we did most of the work remotely, her guidance in brainstorming led me to an idea that was perfect for me. Without this help, I am not sure that I would have been accepted at Wesleyan University.
Griffin, The Hun School, Wesleyan University
Davida helped me out so much. I got into 6 out of the 10 schools I applied to, including my dream school. She helped me write my essays that made me stand out as well as show colleges who I am as a student and a person.
Josh, Hawken, Washington University
I worked with Davida Amkraut in the fall of 2016 to guide me in writing my Common Application essay. I applied to very competitive colleges and knew that my essay would be an important part of my application. I wrote an essay that I thought was pretty good prior to meeting the first time. I really liked the way she tailored her work with me to my style and how I wanted to write it. We met and sat down and talked about my essay and about me. She suggested a different way to write about what I wanted to say that would show my personality and “tell my story” so that my essay would stand out and be unique to me. I was so much happier with the outcome after I rewrote it with her suggestions. We met a few times and communicated via Google Docs which made it easy and convenient. I am pleased to say that I was accepted to my top choice school. I highly recommend working with Davida.
Kyle, University School, Tufts University
We have known Davida Amkraut for several years, as she taught our daughters English and also guided them through the dramatic, transitional middle school years as lead teacher at the Gross Schechter Day School. It was a natural fit, then, to entrust Davida with a key piece of the college admissions preparatory work when our first daughter was ready. We were not disappointed. Our daughter’s success with the English and writing portion of her tests, as well as with her college essay, was an important ingredient in her acceptance to her top target, the University of Rochester. Davida’s ability to cut through the noise and stress and help our daughter with the ACT and SAT’s core elements in these areas was more granular than the approach offered by a traditional testing prep service. Her ability to help our student find her voice, and hone in on the college essay was equally as critical.
Davida is a gifted teacher in two particular ways. First, as a subject-matter expert, she dominates the English language. Her success and long background in developing critical thinking and technical and creative writing skills through literature is unquestioned. The proof is in the high achievement of her former students in high school, university and beyond. Davida’s second gift is her ability to simply make a sustained, deep connection with a teenager. Her street cred with high school juniors is impressive, from her use of social media to her fluency in pop culture. These tools, along with her high EQ, kept our daughter at rapt attention through an otherwise painful right-of-passage. Part technician part psychologist, Davida is built for educational intervention and college guidance counseling at this import time in a student’s journey.
David & Avril, Parent, University of Rochester
Davida kept me inspired and motivated throughout my entire college application experience. She spent long and rigorous hours helping me prepare for the English and reading portions of the ACT, and in the end I was able to raise both portions by at least 4 points. When it came to writing my essay she spent long hours with me, sometimes early in the morning or late at night, in order to enhance my work to produce exactly what each college was looking for. Thanks to Davida, I got into my number one choice of colleges, and she was there every step of the way.
Sydni, Solon High School, University of Rochester
Davida is amazing! She has proven herself to be invaluable in working with our son. He is a strong student, but was challenged trying to write his essays and the last thing he wanted was help from his parents! Her presence allowed us to remove ourselves and the added stress to the entire college process. Even more impressive is her ability to understand your child and get them to think outside their comfort zone and create unbelievable essays that truly reflect themselves. I have a tremendous amount of respect and confidence that she will get the job done for your child as well and would recommend her without reservation.
Shelley, Parent, Vanderbilt University
The college process is stressful in itself, let alone the common application essay that you need to write for most schools. I was completely stumped with my essay. I knew what I wanted to convey but couldn’t find the right words to do so in an interesting and different way; a way that would capture the reader’s attention. I contacted Davida and my essay was transformed into a great piece of writing. She took my ideas and helped me word them in ways that flow beautifully and creatively. My ideas were shaped into an essay that truly reflected my strengths, but also my weaknesses. I was beyond happy with the result. I have recommended her to many people as she is very easy going, fun to talk to, and very flexible. I would recommend her to anyone.
Zoe, Orange High School, University of Cincinnati
I am going to Colorado College! I am very happy with the way my college process has gone, and appreciated Davida’s support every step of the way. I got offered a full ride to Ohio State, a scholarship offer at Boulder and Vermont. I also was invited to the Eckardt Scholars Program at Lehigh. I even received a handwritten letter from Colorado College saying how much they liked my essay, without Davida I am sure I would be in a completely different place!
Eric, Orange High School, Colorado College
Davida Amkraut is 100% the reason I got into each of my reach schools. She gave positive yet constructive feedback that helped me reach my full potential. I ended my sessions with her feeling confident about each of my many essays. Davida made me feel prepared for each and every school that I applied to and was always there for advice about the college process. I cannot thank my parents enough for sending me to Davida.
Emily, Beachwood High School, DePaul University