Thank you for not just for helping Daniel find and then get into a best-fit school for him. But for taking so much pressure off of us during the past year. I have friends who have spent these past months feeling like they have to read every book, blog, article, and message board. And then in turn, nagging and fighting with their kids about what to do and when to get it done. I really didn’t want to spend my last year with Daniel at home fighting over this, and it was very important to me that Daniel finding his college be as stress-free as possible. You gave us all of that. I didn’t have to worry about knowing what schools were out there and what the tricks were about applying because I knew you were on top of it. I didn’t have to nag him to work on applications because I knew you and he had a plan. I am grateful for how much you respected his goals and wants for a school (like near an MLB team!) when others might have tried to talk him out of them as being frivolous, and I appreciate that you didn’t push for schools based solely on ranking or status in order to make your portfolio look better. I simply could not be happier, not only for final result (and for having it so early!) but for the entire process itself. I have sung your praises to my friends with younger students, so I’m sure you’ll be hearing from many of them soon.
It is truly my pleasure to have the opportunity to sing the praises of Davida Amkraut for her exceptional expertise, insight, and efforts as a college admissions consultant. Last year was beyond difficult for many families and their HS seniors in the college admissions process. Added to these at-large hurdles, Marcus had the challenges of coming from a small, little-known western Colorado community and even less well-known K-12 classical education, charter school. This year, as Marcus re-entered the college application arena, we had 2 goals as a family: we wanted Marcus to successfully reap the rewards of all his hard work in school by acceptance into his top choice of university; and, with Marcus being so far away, we wanted to have a skilled professional support him through the admission process, allowing us as parents the gift of having our dynamics and communications not be consumed by checking-in, follow-up, et al, on applications, deadlines, etc. Davida’s prowess and performance far exceeded our expectations. In addition to her savvy skills in the various components of an application (personal statements, essays, description of extra-curricular activities), and her knowledge and acumen of schools that would be a good fit (and how to tailor an application to best address each school’s specific preferences). Having considered several other admissions consultants on the East Coast, we can assure all that her fees were so reasonable by comparison – and well worth every dollar when looking at outcomes. Marcus was accepted, early decision, to George Washington University, and we could not be more pleased for him. We can only hope that this acknowledgement begins to capture our appreciation of Davida – thank you again!
Catherine, Fruita, Colorado
Coming from a household with little to no guidance, Davida took it upon herself to make sure I was successful in completing my college application. She helped me with every aspect of the college process, from the activities section to the common app to scholarships, Davida guided me through it all. She made everything a lot less daunting than appeared to be and her way of words allowed me to show my true self through my essays. With her help, I was able to show both my strengths and weaknesses, and what I am passionate about through some long but also very short essays. Her flexible schedule allowed me to properly pace myself without becoming too stressed. I can undoubtedly say that without Davida, I wouldn’t have gotten into any competitive school, let alone any school.
Seth, Solon High School, University of Wisconsin
Davida was a wonderful resource for our son. Beginning in the spring of his junior year, she worked with him to develop essay ideas, gain confidence with his writing, and eventually determine the colleges that would be a good fit. She helped him with organization so that all of his applications were ready and on time. He is now in the wonderful position of choosing a college from among a number of good choices. We highly recommend DHA Educational Consulting.
Barbara, Parent, Pittsburgh, PA University of Wisconsin
Couldn’t be happier that we hired Davida to help with my son’s college essays. He was having difficulty with finding an angle for his personal statement, but Davida helped him focus and “find his voice.” His essays were a perfect blend of his humor and his achievements. Davida did a good job pivoting to virtual counseling and worked with my son over FaceTime and Google Docs. Definitely the person to pick.
Erica, Parent, Long Island, NY, University of Michigan
Davida worked with my third child to go through the college process, making it by far the easiest as a parent. She took all of the stress and pressure out of the work and helped my son make his applications completely his own. Davida gently guided him through, helping to set deadlines and create a process he could use over again with each essay and application, fleshing out ideas with him and allowing his inner personality and strengths to shine. At the same time, they laughed and joked, keeping goals light and attainable. By early fall all of his applications were ready to go and soon after, he got in early to his first-choice school. We cannot recommend Davida enough, and the fact that my son would agree, says it all.
Shoshana, Parent, New York City, Emory University
I just wanted to thank you so much for being so helpful with the essay writing process. Your advice and all of the time you poured into my essays is the reason I felt excited and confident when I submitted them. All of your feedback made my writing a million times better and I’m so, so appreciative of all your hard work, patience, and support! I also really appreciate how understanding you have been during these past few months.
Carrie, Laurel School, American University
I wanted to write you an email expressing my gratitude towards you for your help with my essay. There’s no way it would’ve turned out the way it did without your help – so thank you.
Laine, Laurel School, University of Rochester
As a parent, I can’t say enough about our experience with Davida. She made the essay experience so easy for both my son and me. I recommend her to anyone going through the college process.
Jamie, Parent, Orange, Ohio, Miami University
Davida is amazing at what she does! In the last six years, she’s worked with all three of my kids (a recent Wesleyan graduate, a current Penn state student and an incoming Emory University student) who have very different personalities and writing styles. She helped each of them identify topics for their essays and provided suggestions without imposing her own writing style. She kept them on a schedule, giving very clear tasks and deadlines, without overwhelming them. We were so lucky to work with her.
Nancy, Parent, Pennington, NJ, Emory
I just wanted to tell you that I loved reading your your incredibly well-written essay. I’d never really thought about crutches that much, but it is strange how needing a crutch is often seen as a weakness or a defeat when it reality it’s the exact opposite of that (and props to you because I read a lot of strong essays, but it’s pretty rare for one genuinely make me rethink my perspective on the topic!). I can tell from your whole application that you are an incredibly bright and compassionate student, and I hope that you will be bringing those strengths to Binghamton’s campus next fall!
Binghamton University Admissions Counselor
I could not have gotten into NYU without Davida. She is so incredibly helpful and supportive and I cannot thank her enough for everything she has done for me. She helped me find my voice and create the very best application possible!
Claire, Shaker Heights High School, New York University
This fall, I worked with Davida to improve my college essays. Her suggestions and starting points were insightful and useful. With her flexible scheduling, I was able to have quick sessions in between various activities, and personally, she was great to work with. Thanks to her help, I got into get into all of my top choice colleges.
Ivy, Berkely High School,Washington University
I am officially done with my apps and I wanted to say I really appreciated all the edits and time you have taken to help me along this tedious process. I am excited to say that I got into one of my top choices- Georgetown University and I would not have been able to do to without your help. Thank you for being so timely, helpful, and a value add.
Arthi, Montgomery Blair High School, Georgetown University
Working with Davida through the college application process made the experience much less painful than anticipated. I have always struggled to put my words into writing, but with Davida’s help I was able to create essays that showed universities who I really was, not just another application number. In the end I don’t think I would have ended in the same place had it not been for Davida’s help and expertise in the college application process
Kfir, Beachwood High School, Boston University
I had the pleasure of meeting Davida while she was doing volunteer work for my high school. I was extremely nervous about the college admissions process because I never saw essay writing as one of my strengths. Davida provides the utmost assistance for anyone to write the perfect college admissions essays. I told her about myself and my ideas and she guided me on how to express my voice to the essay readers. She helped me develop my common app essay and several supplemental essays. I looked forward to meeting with Davida because she always had the most critical yet extremely helpful feedback! I can truly say that without Davida’s help and amazing insight I wouldn’t have gotten into my dream university. Overall I am so grateful that I was able to work with such an intelligent, kind woman!
Jvian, Beachwood High School, Northwestern University
Davida is the best of the best. She brings focus to your topic and clarity to your writing to make sure you have the best essay possible. And then she does it again and again with each and every essay. The humor she brings to the daunting college process makes life easier for all seniors. I would highly recommend working with Davida.
Orly, Beachwood High School, Washington University
Working with Davida is an absolute pleasure. She provides insight, guidance and expertise. What I respect the most however is how she is able to find the best in each student and help him or her craft essays and applications that showcase his or her strengths to the schools they apply. She embues each student with confidence in the ability to put his or her best self forward in this crazy process. I’m so grateful that we had her on our team.
Amy, Parent, Washington University
Davida was pivotal in helping me through the college essay process. From helping me brainstorm common app essay ideas to perfecting my supplements, Davida’s help added the extra boost my essays needed. Her extensive knowledge on how to craft a college essay made me very confident with the writing I was sending to the admissions offices, and I couldn’t be more thankful for all her hard work.
Gabrielle, Solon High School, Princeton University
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
Davida has been extremely helpful with all my college applications and essays and made it so easy for me. She has made everything so much better than I would have done it alone. With her help I have been very successful in getting ready for college and everything I needed to get done.
Ryan, Solon High School, University of Arizona
I worked with Davida on every aspect of my college applications. I know for a fact that if I did not work with Davida, I would not have gotten accepted into my dream school. She helps without controlling and has a way with words that makes everything seem less stressful and confusing. Coming from a high school with a failing grade and crumbling administration, Davida took the place of a typical high school counselor and for that I will forever be grateful. She is seriously a joy to work with!
Charlotte, Cleveland Heights High School, Northeastern University
While the college process can be overwhelming, Davida’s help and care along the way made it much smoother and less stressful. By keeping me on track at a doable pace, I never felt the pressure of deadlines. Davida’s support truly made me feel confident about my applications, essays, and that I had chosen the right schools for me. I always looked forward to my time with Davida!
Rachel, Shaker Heights High School, University of Maryland
My son finished the process most confident about the quality of his essay which was the thing he was most worried about when he started this process. Davida took the time to listen to him and really understand what a good fit would be for him. Her guidance in this process was invaluable. Davida’s working with my son was the best part of a confusing and stressful process. We couldn’t be happier with the outcome. She is flexible and thoughtful in her working with students and meets them right where they are.
Pat, Parent, The Ohio State University Honors
As parents, working with Davida was an amazing experience. We knew that she understood and appreciated our daughter. Her guidance was right on the mark and best of all she made the process enjoyable. She paced out the necessary work so it was not a burden. Davida developed a real relationship with our daughter and that means so much!
Sharon, Parent, University of Maryland
I wanted to stand apart from other applicants, and in order to do so I decided I needed to find my voice. Working with Davida was so much less like working through a translator than I anticipated, and was much more like cleaning off a mirror so that my reflection could show better.
Natalie, Shaker Heights High School, Tufts University
Davida has helped me so much in the college application process! When we worked together on my essays, she gave me suggestions that greatly improved my writing, but she still always made sure that my own voice and personality shone through. She was also extremely kind and supportive during such a stressful time. I’m excited to say that I got accepted to UChicago, one of my top choices, and I couldn’t have done it without her!
Sam, Revere High School, University of Chicago
As a parent to first time Seniors, Davida’s expertise was the perfect compliment for our kids (twins) needs. She is very knowledgeable about the college application process and was a big help in creating a well balanced list of schools and strategies to apply. Her essay coaching was spot on, and enabled both children to find their own voice and complete outstanding essays.
Lynnn, Parent, Tufts/Indiana University Kelly School of Business
Many friends and family members suggested we hire Davida to help our son with his college essays and assist in the application process. The idea was met with some resistance and trepidation on his part. Those feelings disappeared as soon as he met Davida. Our son came home from his initial meeting using words like awesome, amazing and genius to describe Davida. He even referred to her as a wizard! Thanks to Davida, our college application process was stress free and seamless. As parents we were able to take a hands-off approach, allowing Davida to help guide our son giving him the confidence and encouragement necessary to help him to succeed. We are tremendously happy with the result and highly recommend Davida!
Lisa, Parent, University of Colorado, Boulder
The college essay process was very daunting to me and I am so grateful for the assistance and guidance provided by Davida. Davida was able to truly help me navigate all the ins and outs of my common app essay, supplemental essays, and other college application questions. When helping with essays, Davida’s combination of honesty and compassion helped me to craft essays that I was proud of and helped me get into some of my top-choice schools. Throughout our time together, Davida was also always available for a phone call when questions arose or to just to help make the process less overwhelming. I am so grateful for Davida’s guidance and would highly recommend her services to help make sense of the college application process.
Joelle, Beachwood High School, Dual Degree Program Columbia University/Tel Aviv University