|Parents & Students Praise Zodda College Services
Colleges We Didnít Know - A Great Fit!
Right from the beginning, I knew that the college search for our daughter was going to be a challenge. She was looking for a small non-urban school with students who shared similar perspectives about college; she wanted interactive class experiences versus lecture-like approaches to learning. None of us had a clue as to which schools could meet her expectations.
We turned to Zodda College Services for help. Following an interview with our daughter, Judy Zodda developed a list of twenty schools that met her criteria. We pared the list and came up with several choices. Of those, St. John’s College in Annapolis, Maryland, positioned as a school that “changes lives,” was on the list. After visiting its website, we discovered that the school offered a one week summer curriculum program which Sasha attended. Her experience was so exceptional that she decided she wanted to go to that school. Against our advice and Judy’s, she remained firm with her choice and submitted one college application only – to St. John’s. We are proud to say she was accepted, thanks to Judy who helped us identify good candidate schools that were a possible fit for our daughter. Without her help we would not have known those schools even existed.
Need-Based Financial Aid and Scholarships Exceed Expectations
We started the college search process with Judy Zodda when our daughter was a junior in high school. We could not have done it alone. Our goal was to get Danielle into a strong college with great academic scholarships. She was able to tell us in advance exactly what we would also receive in need-based aid as well.
The process Judy uses is tough but it makes the student independent and responsible for her own decisions. She did an excellent job and we saw our daughter mature during this process. Judy was always available to our daughter and to us; in fact, if we had questions her answers came back almost immediately. Judy also connected us with a financial aid planner to assist in filling out the financial aid forms correctly and who filed them on time. She includes this as part of her package, so you are not paying anything extra for this service.
Danielle applied to nine of the colleges from the list developed by Judy. She was accepted at all those schools and surprisingly, every school offered her a scholarship – in addition to need-based aid, far exceeding our expectations. Danielle has chosen to attend Case Western Reserve University’s School of Nursing in the fall.
We could not have done this college search alone. We are thankful that we hired Judy Zodda. Without a doubt she knows her stuff and we would not hesitate even one second to recommend her.
First College Year Over: A Major Success Thanks to Judy Zodda
"My son had a great freshman year at small private college in Pennsylvania . We are thrilled with the results. From a not-so-stellar student while in high school, he earned all As & Bs. He made the varsity swim team and he took on a leadership role at school where he was a founding member of a new fraternity and is stepping forward as a leader in other areas as well. I doubt he would have had those successes had we not hired Judy Zodda to help.
"Judy analyzed his academic and his athletic situation and encouraged him to apply to smaller schools rather than the larger universities that were on his initial college search list. She knew he would produce more in a smaller environment where he'd get more attention. She helped him get recruited for the swim team. The whole time we worked with Judy we found her to be patient, fantastic to work with, and one of the most professional people I've ever met.
Some college coaches charge by the hour and bill for every minute over that hour; that's not true of Judy who spends more time with her students than others - you get much more for the money spent with her. She gives her best and I would highly recommend her to anyone. My son called her often during the year just to touch base and tell her how he was doing. That's just another 'feather in her cap.'"
Carol K. 2010
Gap Year Program Yields Results
"My son applied to college and was accepted; then he had such a dismal last semester in high school we weren't even sure that he'd graduate. The college, of course, demanded that he prove himself again, by this time he was struggling and lacking focus, and he was afraid to tell us that he was not ready for college. Judy Zodda began discussions with him about a trying a gap year program, which were going well until a guidance counselor told him 'you don't even like school, get it over with,' almost ending his decision to even try a gap year program.
"Judy Zodda, furious with the counselor's advice and determined that a gap year program was the right thing for our son to do, pushed ahead. She provided him with materials to help and she tracked his progress. It amazed us how important he remained to her throughout the process. His gap year included three months with the National Outdoor Leadership School in the Pacific Northwest (NOLS); a wilderness training program that he became very enthusiastic about; and an internship, associated with medical efforts, in Costa Rica . He has since earned his EMT certification and he has been accepted into a New Jersey college starting this fall. As a result of the gap year program , he is more directed and his self-image is greatly improved. He succeeded and now he is confident that he can do it again. I would unequivocally refer Judy Zodda for her emotional and practical support and for her stellar skills as an independent college coach."
Fran S. 2011
Gap Year Parent
Phone, E-Mail, Texting: Getting Through the College Search
"Any parent with a high school student knows that guiding a child through the college search process is not easy and having someone with the right knowledge to help can make a big difference. At first we started our son's college search on our own then we used a local counselor.
"It's important to identify what your student wants to do with his future-clearly our son did not know what he wanted to do. He is an excellent soccer player, good enough to attend a DIII college but most schools in the Midwest don't focus on soccer. The college list the local coach helped him develop centered on our state, Idaho . Clearly, we needed a coach who knew what options were available to him in the eastern part of the country.
"That's when we contacted Judy Zodda. Given the distance, I wasn't sure how the college search process would work out using the phone, e-mail and texting -it worked beautifully. We hired her to help expand his college list to include eastern colleges, and to review his resume and essays. Judy gave him lots of feedback on his resume and she gave him a new perspective on essays helping him to bridge the geographical challenge as well as helping him to focus on what makes him unique. Judy has an amazing perspective on what campuses are like (she's visited hundreds) and which work best for each student. In the end we found out he had many choices that we had not even considered. Her most valuable contribution was helping us get our arms around all that needed to be done; she made looking for the right college so much easier.
"Thanks to Judy, he will attend Colby College a DIII school."
Karen M. 2011
Ketchum , Idaho
The Best Money I Ever Spent
Hiring Judy at Zodda College Services to coach my son through the college application process was the best money I’ve ever spent. You might wonder the reasons that would drive a parent to hire a college coach. For me there were many reasons, some of which you, as a parent, might appreciate:
• I didn’t want to butt heads with my son – the college search is stressful enough
• I, myself, was a foreign student and had never been through this process
• We lead extremely busy lives
• The process itself is extremely complex and intensive, we simply did not have the knowledge or the time
Judy Zodda was a tough taskmaster with us as well as with our son. She advised us that the college search was our son’s not ours, and she insisted that he take ownership of the process – an approach that she uses with all her students. Because she has personally visited many colleges and makes it her business to know what the strengths and weaknesses of each college are, her insight was especially invaluable for my son. Importantly, left on our own, we would have visited many schools that would not have been a fit. Judy narrowed the list of schools for us to visit to those that best suited his needs. That benefit was invaluable – as I look back on the process, I am convinced that our journey would have been costly and wasted without her help.
Judy is a great communicator and she helped my son focus on what he wanted out of a school; through those discussions he came to realize that a smaller school was a better fit for him. Her essay critiques made him a better writer. He went head-to-head with a coach who would not take no for an answer. And, although he might not totally agree with my observations, there will come a day when he will fully appreciate what Judy Zodda did for him. All-in-all the college search for him was a maturing experience and the results, phenomenal. He was accepted at 7 schools and received scholarships from all but one. The scholarship that he accepted will cover the cost of Zodda College Services’ fee many, many times over.
I mentioned earlier that hiring Judy Zodda was the best money that I ever spent – thanks to her the college application process was also a learning experience for each of us. Judy will see me again.
Richard A. 2011
Why Choosing a College Coach to Work with Our Sons was the Right Thing to Do
“Zodda College Services was recommended to me by a friend who had used Judy Zodda to coach her child through the college application process. I’m thankful to my friend for the referral and to Judy for her hard work with my twin sons. One son will be going to Texas Christian University in the fall. My other son is still in decision-mode between Clemson and another college.
“You think you know your children; but when it comes down to it-you really don’t. You also think your children know what they want when it comes to college – they really don’t. Choosing a college coach to work with our twins was the right thing to do. From the beginning, Judy insisted that the process belonged to the student and it is critical that they, not us, take ownership. Judy assured us that she would keep our sons focused and on track – and she did. Warm and fuzzy are not words that apply to Judy rather, she is a professional who is committed to your child’s success and getting you the best value for your investment.
“Judy impressed on us that our sons needed to speak for themselves; although I did not understand at the time, I later had an ‘AHA’ moment. During a college interview we were paired with another student whose grandparents answered all questions posed by the interviewer, leaving the interviewer clearly annoyed and unable to get a real read on the student’s skills.
“Equally impressive about the results from working with Judy Zodda was that our sons’ applications were in the mail by August and they were receiving decision letters by the Thanksgiving/Christmas holidays – when all their friends were just getting going on their applications.
“Overall it is much easier and far less stressful to get someone else to push your child through the college application process instead of you. I would not hesitate to recommend Zodda College Services.”
Virginia Wilson 2011
Such a success story-U.S. News & World Report featured his story
Daniel Crowley couldn't decide whether he should study art or music when he went to college. He was equally talented in both. His Mom thought he should study art because he would be more likely to get a job in art than in music. I asked, "What do you spend all of your spare time doing?" "Music, every minute I can." The decision was made and the rest is history. Click here to read U.S. News & World Report that features Daniel Crowley
There is one more piece to this story. Daniel's Mom was initially concerned for Daniel to go any further away than Boston because he has juvenile diabetes. I knew he had to expand his college search further than Boston if he was to maximize his music possibilities in college. I found a weekend camp that he could attend in the spring of his senior year, on living with juvenile diabetes after high school. There was also a one day "camp" for the parents that same weekend. By the time this weekend concluded, Daniel's family realized that he'd be fine going to college in another state. The entire process was one of growth and transformation for all involved.
Click here to read the testimonial from Daniel's Parents
My daughter is in a good place right now, thanks to Judy Zodda. She has been accepted into the doctorate program at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Allied Health Sciences and her financial aid package is a good one. When I asked for referrals to college coaches, several people recommended Judy Zodda because of her good reputation.
When the college search process started, my daughter had a lot on her plate - her father had died and her brother had suffered through leukemia. I thought it was important for her to have a strong outside influence and Judy gave her just that. They bonded as Judy coached her through the college search process. It's amazing how proficient Judy is: she helps with letters and applications, she knows which colleges "fit" her students, and she knows how to get the best out of her students. A total of 10 applications were sent out and my daughter received 9 acceptances; I think it was a feat to get accepted into a doctorate program right out of high school. Judy was a life saver to us and we can't thank her enough.
When we looked for a college coach for our daughter two things were important to us, we wanted someone with a personal approach and who could give us a good college list. Judy Zodda turned out to be a great match. She is a professional and at the same time caring-where o the r coaches treat students as just another job, Judy is personally invested with her students and that worked well with our daughter. When we first started working with her, our daughter had transferred from a private all girls' school to a public high school and that move was not easy. Judy identified her issues right away and she instilled confidence in our daughter as she mentored her on how to position herself as a leader. She also taught her how to be a self-promoter and convinced her that "teachers are there for you-so talk to them - the more they get to know about you, the better." As a result, her recommendation letters reflected her academic and leadership skills.
We were hesitant when it came to writing resumes because there are so many different forms. But we took Judy's advice, in the end our daughter's resume was so much more sophisticated than others. Finally, the college list that Judy gave us was spot-on. Our daughter was accepted at 7 out of 10 schools that she applied to, schools like Oberlin, Skidmore, Pitzer, NYU and Fordham, some of which offered academic scholarships. She will go to NYU (The Gallatin School) in the fall. We plan to use Judy Zodda again for our other daughter's college search. Thanks Judy.
Parent Rates College Coach Judy Zodda an A
Judy Zodda coached two of my kids through the college application process. She is gifted in figuring out what makes students tick. The thing, I think, that is so great about Judy is that she got to know our kids and helped them verbalize what they wanted when it came to selecting a college. Judy is skillful in meeting students halfway and motivating them throughout a sometimes overwhelming process. Our son was accepted at Bryant University – his first choice school, as was our daughter who will be attending Bryn Mawr. Judy spends a lot of time and effort with both her parents and college-bound students and the results are first-rate.
Parent '08 & '10
Speaking about College Acceptance Results
My son was accepted at 16 out of the 17 colleges that he applied to. To say that Judy Zodda’s coaching style is really helpful – is an understatement. She has tremendous knowledge about colleges and the differences between them. She knows the ins and outs of resume and essay writing and she was diligent in helping him to re-think and re-draft them to make sure they accurately reflected him as a person and a student to the people reading his applications.
I was really impressed when Judy took material that my son had written and encouraged him to submit it in its raw and unedited form as an essay on his applications. Interestingly, he didn’t even consider it worthy – but she saw the uniqueness of his message and it worked. He is now attending his first choice school, Washington University. Throughout the college search process, Judy always had time for us, day or night. She was as interested in our son as we were, she really made a difference.
Determined and Insightful Coach = A Perfect Match
The end result of working with Judy Zodda is that our son is exactly where he should be… at a school that is a perfect match for him.
When we first met Judy, our son asked her to tell him what he needed to do to get into the dream school on his list. Judy encouraged us first to visit other schools that would also be a fit for him. That way we could become familiar with how the process differed at each school and be better able to make a good decision. She was right. I really can’t say enough about Judy’s process. She encouraged our son to meet all deadlines and gave him direction to improve his essays. While we all had a stake in the college application process, she coached our son through the entire process and helped build his confidence so that he could make the final college decision.
He is now at Villanova, his dream school, and enjoying his college experience. Several of his friends have already transferred schools and another is going to make a move in May. Judy has great insight and determination and we are grateful for her help-without it he could be in the same situation as his friends.
A Comprehensive and Organized College Search Makes the Difference
Several things impressed me when our family first started to work with Zodda College Consulting. At our first meeting, Judy Zodda made certain that she was a good fit for us and vice-versa before we moved ahead; we appreciated that. Additionally, she assured us that her process is custom-tailored for each student. Stephen was in his junior year in high school when we met with Judy. Her process is so complete and organized that everything was in place for him to apply for early action the summer before his senior year, leaving him to enjoy his last year. By mid-December he had acceptances from 8 colleges.
Working with Judy Zodda provided a springboard for us. Her approach is thorough and comprehensive. It is focused on getting students into a college that fits them and will best help them succeed. As I look back, it is clear to me that having Judy at our sides made an overwhelming college search much simpler and positive.
Precarious Situation Turned Around
Judy Zodda took a precarious situation and turned it around for us. She made the process less confusing and gave us confidence to move ahead. I particularly liked the way she let my nephew do the talking about his future; she respects students. She is fast, efficient and was a great help to us.
Art-Related Schools: Meeting the Requirements, Gaining Acceptance
When it comes to educational college consultants, Judy Zodda is awesome. Students often get caught up with their friends and want to go to schools they favor. Parents have their own ideas of what college is right. In working with families, Judy Zodda is insistent on showing them all the choices available to them and finding the right school that fits the student’s college skills and direction.
The college search is scary enough but for students wanting to major in art another layer of work is added. Art-related programs have extra requirements that are different for every school bringing even more stress to our daughter’s search. Judy helped us sort through that challenge by showing us how organize all of the materials that needed to be submitted with each application. She worked closely with our daughter, helped her to relax and explore all options that would be the right fit for her. We are all thrilled that she has been accepted to Miami University of Ohio and will start there this fall. Thanks, Judy.
Zodda College Services: Well Worth the Investment
My daughter is now a freshman at Nazareth College in Rochester – thanks to Judy Zodda. As an educational consultant, Judy is at the top of her game armed with a wealth of knowledge about the college placement process. She is always there when you need her. She even takes her smart phone and laptop on vacation.
I can honestly say that using Zodda College Services was well worth the investment. Actually I feel I got my investment back because my daughter received a generous academic scholarship. We were ill-equipped to deal with the college application process. Judy made it happen. It was amazing to see the transformation as our daughter worked through a very intense and focused process with Judy. She became more responsible, learned how to interview, and her writing skills improved as she worked and re-worked her essays. When the college acceptance letters rolled in, 8 in all, she was well-equipped to make the final selection herself… mostly because of Judy’s insistence that her students “own the process.” Judy is very tuned-in to the athletic recruiting process. Thanks to her our daughter is also playing basketball at the school she loves.
My twins will be ready for their own college searches in a few years and we will most certainly use Judy again. She is organized to a fault and keeps both parents and students best interests at heart.
Blazing a Trail to Success
Hiring Zodda College Services is the best decision I could have made. Throughout the college search process, she kept our son on track and energized him with ideas that helped him blaze a trail to success.
We started working with Judy when our son was a junior. Although he had been diagnosed with learning differences he was struggling academically, which was a real concern to us. One of the first things she did for him was to put him in touch with an outside tutor who helped him acquire tools to compensate for his learning differences. Those tools made a huge difference and I believe they will benefit him for life.
Judy listened, questioned and assessed our son’s aptitude, personality, academic and learning skills. Then she guided him on a path so that, in the end, his college choices would be the right fit for him. She was a lifeline to us. It’s no small credit to Judy that our son was accepted to the majority of colleges that he applied to. I would have no hesitation recommending Judy Zodda to anyone, that’s how highly I value her expertise as a college consultant.
One of the best choices my family made for me
Thinking about college is overwhelming for any junior or senior in high school. One of the best choices my parents and I made was hiring Judy Zodda . The first thing she does is get to know everything about you, what you like and what you would like in a college. Next she compiles an extensive list of colleges, based on my preferences, academics, interests, and extracurricular activities. This list was a key factor for my college search. Half of the schools on it I had never even heard of and probably would have never heard of. The students at my high school pretty much all apply to the same handful of schools every year. I didn't really know where to start . Judy was there as a guide and helped point me in the right direction.
She coached me on what to look for when visiting a college, what to expect during an interview. When it came to application time, because she got to know me so well, she made sure I included things in my essays and activities resume that I didn't know were important but would make me stand out. I edited my essays and resume more times than I care to think about.
One of the most important things Judy did was push me to get things done. All of my applications were in by the beginning of October. The first semester of senior year is no picnic; I think that I worked harder during that first semester than my whole junior year. All of my classmates were overwhelmed by college applications, essays, resumes and recommendations on top of all their schoolwork. It was great to be able to just focus on my grades. I got into my number one school, early decision. I'll admit that when I found out, I cried. Through it all, Judy guided and supported me.
She helped my son become the emerging man he is today
We met Judy Zodda midway through my son's junior year. My son was a challenge. Not directed, anxious, not achieving his potential in school. But I knew he had it in him and so did Judy.
She started to meet with him, understand him and help him understand himself. She directed us to the proper tutoring and testing. Those were the early months. He began to understand his learning style and have more confidence. This just kept getting better and better over the course of the year.
He is an athlete in a competitive sport Judy wasn't that familiar with. But she delved in, spoke to coaches, and was able to help us understand the college hierarchy in his sport. All the while encouraging him academically to be the best he could be.
She helped him with his academic/athletic resume. When we met with coaches he was prepared. And then he changed...absolutely grew up. Was elected captain, competed and won some major tournaments over the summer. His grades and sat's shot up. He chose very challenging classes for his senior year. He was ready.
Judy was adamant. Those applications were going to be ready in early fall. And they were. He was ready to write them. Knew what he wanted and who he was. She helped and encouraged him every step of the way. But they were surely his words, his accomplishments . She helped him become the emerging man I knew was there. We owe her much.
From a very proud mom '08
I wouldn't be where I am today without you
Just when I thought you were done with me and had moved on, you totally caught me by surprise with the most thoughtful sentiment of the year. Thank you so much for continually thinking of me. I wouldn't be where I am today without you. Thanks!
A strong foundation helped make an important decision
Judy quickly established a strong rapport with my son and earned both his and our respect because of her desire to learn about what his individual goals were and what he was passionate about. She provided a structure for the process for everything from how to create a list of schools, do the research, how to approach a college visit, and all the important steps along the way. The systems she recommended made it clear to see what action steps needed to be taken each month and the deadlines she set forth were aggressive yet manageable. Her explanation of why the steps were necessary made it easier to stay on course.
As my son started his senior year, he was a completely different student from the year before when we started working with Judy. His confidence developed in large part because of the exposure to a critically important process that he has very effectively taken ownership of. We credit Judy's expertise in helping direct his focus on the important aspects of the college search, and we are thrilled knowing our son has received such a strong foundation to make one of the most important decisions of his life.
Judy Zodda guides brothers
After using Judy Zodda 's expertise to place two sons in college, I can honestly say that we could not have done it without her. In an age where college admission is becoming increasingly more and more competitive, families are hard pressed to find the right matches which are realistic choices for today's students. Judy helped us with navigating the maze of schools and homed in on colleges that coincided with our particular needs.
Our oldest son is a student/athlete and wanted to play sports in college. Judy gave us invaluable pointers and "step-by-step" guidance throughout the lengthy recruitment process. Because of her in-depth knowledge about how to present student /athletes to prospective coaches, our son was recruited by several schools.
The younger brother wanted to study business, but, having his pilot's license, he also wanted to pursue his interest in aviation. Once again, Judy did exhaustive research, individualizing his particular strengths and goals, and came up with a viable list of schools which would accommodate his wishes.
I can highly recommend Judy Zodda's college services. Her attention to detail and sincere interest in her students set her apart from the crowd. Judy's thorough knowledge of the college admission process enabled us to make informed judgments, resulting in successful matches for both boys.
Parent 06, 07
Now we know: "We really did need to hire the services of a college consultant"
On the evening of December 14th, while traveling on a business trip overseas, I got a call from my daughter happily informing me that she got accepted early decision to the college of her first choice. It was magnificent news. I remembered then our family discussions almost a year earlier on whether we "really need" to hire the services of a college consultant. We hired Judy Zodda who was recommended by friends and we think we made a good decision. Simply put, she is outstanding. She is highly knowledgeable, and demanding; exactly what my daughter needed. She held my daughter's hand, and ours, through the whole process.
How we sent our daughter to college in the east by working with Zodda College Services
Coming from the Midwest (Indiana), finding the right college for our daughter in New England shaped up to be quite a challenge - how to narrow the large list of possibilities to a manageable number to visit and determine which were reasonable choices to consider.
It was our good fortune to contact Judy and seek her help in our search. Judy spent considerable time gaining an understanding of our daughter's strengths, needs, preferences and academic/extracurricular profile.
She then assembled a list of schools for us to consider and decide which to visit. These schools ranged from ones that our daughter was likely to be admitted to, to some that were stretches. All were good candidates and offered a wide variety for our daughter to compare.
As a result of this process, our daughter applied to several colleges. There were choices when the acceptance letters arrived, including our daughter's first choice college! She graduated in May, 2007. This college proved to be a perfect fit, academically and personally, and our daughter believes it was the best choice she could have made. Thanks to Judy's interest, knowledge and hard work, our college search proved to be a real success - for the whole family. If we were to go through it again, the first call would be to Judy.
Parent of '03 high school graduate, '07 college graduate
Zodda College Services - Educational Consultants providing college consulting and counseling services to parents and students in Andover, Ashland, Boston Brookline, Concord, Dedham, Dover, Framingham, Franklin, Holliston, Hopkinton, Marlborough, Medfield, Millis, Natick, Newton, Sherborn, Southborough, Sudbury, Wellesley, Weston, Westwood, Worcester, as well as throughout Massachusetts, New England, the Northeast, across the United States and internationally.