Admission By Design | College Consulting
Lynn Radlauer Lubell

Lynn RadLauer Lubell

  • Admissions Strategist and Coach
  • Founder, Admission By Design
  • Publisher, InLikeMe.com
  • IECA Professional Member
  • MIT & Harvard Graduate

Admission By Design College Consulting

Home » Getting Started / FAQ's

Getting Started / FAQ's

Getting Started:

Most clients begin the process with a 30-minute complimentary meeting (in-person, by phone or Skype) to learn more about Admission By Design and to help determine if working together would be a good fit.  The initial, no-obligation meeting is an ideal opportunity to ask questions, discuss expectations and to clarify your goals, needs and priorities.

Most client engagements begin with a strategic plan.  The first step includes an objective review of the student’s credentials and a discussion of goals and interests.   The second session focuses on the personalized roadmap for the student, prepared by Admission By Design, with targeted advice and recommendations.  Students may be asked to complete an online assessment such as “Do What You Are” before the second session to provide input for the strategic plan.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Why should I consider hiring a college consultant?

Admission to selective private and state universities has become increasingly competitive. The cost of higher education has skyrocketed, making the right college decision more important than ever.  At the same time, many school-based counselors are overburdened.   Given the complexities of gaining an upper hand in the college process, many families find that a private consultant improves their options and reduces stress by delivering timely insight, objectivity, strategic advice and an organized process.

What types of students work with college consultants?


Admission By Design clients range from “Ivy-League Hopefuls” to “Solid C Students”, including student athletes, performers, and budding scientists.   Based on your interests, abilities, aspirations and achievements, Admission By Design works with you to develop a personalized plan for a higher education that is right for you.

When is the ideal time to begin working with a college consultant?

The best time to begin is when the student is ready to become engaged in the process.  This can take place anytime between middle school and the fall of senior year.  Some students start with a strategic planning session in 8th or 9th grade.  An obvious advantage of starting early is giving the student more time to develop and pursue a curriculum, activities, and passions that are consistent with their strategy.  Many students begin working with Admission By Design during junior year as the pressure builds towards entrance exams, visiting schools and thinking about the future.

How do out-of-area students work with Admission By Design?

Admission By Design assists students in Europe, Asia, South America, Canada and throughout the U.S.  We use a combination of Skype, Dropbox, email and telephone to complement the state-of-the-art web-based software portal used for all clients to manage the entire process.

E-mail, Skype and Admission By Design’s web-based portal make communication easy and convenient for international students and their parents.

How does Admission By Design help students stand out from the competition?

These days most highly-selective schools use a holistic admissions process and seek students with intriguing passions and experiences.  In short they are more interested in enrolling a well-rounded freshman class than admitting a class filled with well-rounded students.  Solid academic credentials coupled with a hodgepodge of interests and activities is generally not the best strategy.  Admission By Design helps students identify their interests and find opportunities to pursue and express them with college admissions appeal.

Does Admission By Design coach for interviews?

Prior to founding Admission By Design, Lynn Radlauer Lubell served on the MIT Education Council for nearly ten years interviewing hundreds of undergraduate applicants.  Coaching for interviews, which includes helping students develop a compelling story, is a strong area of expertise.  Admission By Design also helps students compose their high school resume which is useful for interviews as well as for college and scholarship applications.

How does Admission By Design assist with application essays?

Admission By Design has a good sense for what individual colleges find appealing and assists with brainstorming, content selection and editing.   Particularly important is providing insight about your character. Admissions officers want to get a feel for who you are and what makes you tick.  Admission By Design coaches students to develop interesting and well-written essays that reveal desirable character traits and life lessons such as how you handled a challenge or overcame an obstacle.

How does Admission By Design develop a list of “best fit” colleges?

Admission By Design utilizes a three-tiered approach – reach, match and likely – to maximize options and minimize stress. Based on your specific interests, academic performance, preferences (e.g. academic programs, location, size, student life, athletics, activities, affordability) and personal needs, and leveraging a broad knowledge of colleges and universities throughout the USA (including many hidden gems), Admission By Design will work with you to develop and fine-tune an appropriate college list.

How does Admission By Design factor in affordability and merit aid?

Few families pay full sticker price for college.  Admission By Design is knowledgeable about enrollment management practices that selectively provide financial/merit aid to shape the incoming freshman class and meet the institution’s revenue goals.   At many schools, desirable candidates can be rewarded with generous merit aid regardless of ability to pay.   Admission By Design incorporates affordability and potential aid into college selection recommendations based on the family’s needs and goals.

How does Admission By Design’s web-based system benefit students and parents?

One of biggest challenges of the college process is staying organized.  Admission By Design’s student portal (accessible from any computer connected to the Internet) makes it easy for clients to: view their college list; check admissions requirements and information by school; track deadlines and manage to-dos; schedule entrance exams and much more.  The automated reminders for SAT/ACT registration, upcoming meetings, milestones and assignments enhances productivity and helps keep everybody on-task.

How does Admission By Design coach aspiring engineers, doctors and scientists?

Admission By Design has a strong track record helping students gain admission to some of the most competitive undergraduate programs including MIT and Caltech.  By suggesting internships, research opportunities, enrichment, summer programs,  science/robotics competitions, and other interesting experiences, students are able to develop themselves into desirable candidates.

Are you accredited and how do you stay current?

Lynn Radlauer Lubell, Founder of Admission By Design is a member of HECA (Higher Education Consultants Organization) and a Professional Member of IECA (Independent Educational Consultants Association).  IECA Professional Membership requires at least three-years of admissions consulting experience along with other rigorous criteria.  Lynn stays informed by attending conferences and continuing education programs sponsored by IECA, HECA and MyCCA and by visiting various campuses on a regular basis.   Lynn is passionate about college-related research and keeping up-to-date on programs and admissions trends.  Her college-bound website InLikeMe.com is recommended by guidance counselors throughout the world.

Does Admission By Design assist with professional and graduate school admissions?

Yes – Admission By Design provides coaching, essay guidance, and interview prep for students applying to MBA programs, law and medical school, and other Masters and Ph.D. programs.

Does Admission By Design prep students for entrance exams?

College Entrance Exams (SAT, ACT and Subject Tests) are important for admission and aid at most U.S. colleges and universities.  Admission By Design does not provide test preparation services but helps you decide which test(s) to take, and when.

How does Admission By Design charge for services?

Admission By Design services are individually customized to each student. Step-by-step expertise is available on an hourly, customized service block, and comprehensive flat-rate basis.   Multi-year packages are payable over time.   Afternoon, evening and weekend appointments are available to accommodate student schedules.