The Fall is typically college application season for high school seniors, but the world is a little upside down right now, and if you are the parent of a high schooler, you and your student likely have many questions about what this all means. To talk us through the uncertainty, and especially how it impacts differently wired students, I’ve invited author, journalist, and admissions expert David Marcus to the podcast. David has been on all sides of this game: as a journalist observing admissions offices, as an anxious parent himself, and as an educational consultant to kids across the country. He is also the author of  Acceptance: A Legendary Guidance Counselor Helps Seven Kids Find the Right Colleges–and Find Themselves. 

Throughout this pandemic, David has been following how colleges are responding and what changes are taking place in the admissions process.  In our conversation, David shares what high school students can be doing right now, what’s always most important in considering post-high school plans, pandemic or not, and how it’s not all doom and gloom—why a system turned on its head might just be a good thing for differently wired kids.  


About David: David L. Marcus is an educational consultant and admissions expert who finds the right college for each student. He is the author of Acceptance, a book about students going through the application process. He also works with students applying to grad schools, as well as those who decide that college is not the right path. He also wrote a book about struggling teenagers getting help in a residential program.

As a journalist, David shared the Pulitzer Prize. He was a staff reporter for the Boston Globe, the Miami Herald and Newsday on Long Island. David is the father and stepfather to four children. David is an honors graduate of Brown University. He did a fellowship at Harvard. But he says a course at a community college changed his life.



  • What is currently happening with regards to college admissions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic
  • How these changes might be both beneficial and challenging for differently wired high school students 
  • What is meant by a “gap year,” what it might look like during the pandemic, and why should students consider it
  • What should college-bound differently wired kids be prioritizing during remote and hybrid learning situations
  • David’s advice to parents who are worried about their atypical high school kids experiencing the “Covid slide” in their motivation
  • How this pandemic can become an opportunity for widespread change in the college admissions culture in the US






Read through the whole episode!






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