Meet Our Bloggers
Elaine Andres is a Volunteer Abroad Team Member at Go Overseas. Elaine is fourth year student at UC Berkeley majoring in rhetoric with an interest in global development. She is an experienced traveler and has volunteered in Tanzania. Check out Go Volunteer Abroad for program reviews, listings, interviews, articles, and more!
Barbara Benham is a writer, blogger and social media consultant. She’s written for a number of national magazines and online venues. Her websites are BarbaraBenham.com and StickyClicky.com. She lives in Washington, D.C., with her 15-year-old son.
Sue Blaney is a nationally recognized award-winning author, speaker, and publisher dedicated to supporting parents in successfully raising teenagers. Sue specializes in communication and works with parents and professionals at many levels to educate, empower and connect parents of teens.
Visit her website at www.ParentingTeensInfo.com.
As an advisor with Tips on Trips and Camps, a leading summer advisory service for over 41 years, Ellen Blum works with families one-on-one and begins by getting to know them, the child and the variety of important details that will help create the ideal summer experience for everyone. Through visits to the camps and ongoing relationships with program Directors, Ellen gathers important information in order to match campers with programs that will be the best fit for each individual. Ellen has a Masters Degree in Education and has two teenagers of her own. Email Ellen directly at Ellen@TipsonTripsandCamps.com.
Holly Bull, President of The Center for Interim Programs LLC, is one of the original Interim students. To date, Holly has placed over a thousand individuals in programs in the 20+ years that she has been counseling people through the Interim gap-year process.
Sarah Werthan Buttenwieser is a freelance writer with a personal blog, Standing in the Shadows. In addition to writing, she has four children: one each in high school, middle school, elementary school and preschool.
Hilary Brennan, founder/instructor of Socially Savvy™, a Moorestown,N.J.,- based social skills and etiquette training company, has created highly customized programs that empower students to be great ambassadors for their schools and themselves on and off campus, seven days a week. Socially Savvy helps students maximize their potential and succeed in life as they develop their individual talents and interests.
Socially Savvy provides contemporary curriculums for schools, universities, and corporations to raise social awareness and instill confidence and leadership skills that are critical to success for all ages, personally and professionally. Customized seminars and workshops are offered for any size class and the company’s varied interactive curriculums relate to a variety of learning styles. Please visit www.sociallysavvynj.com, or call (609) 932-2296 to learn more.
Allison Cheston is a New York City-based career advisor who works with young adults who are in high school, college or are recent graduates, to help them identify their unique value in the marketplace and explore alternative careers. Allison is author of an upcoming book to help young adults from late high school through college identify strengths and interests and match them to internships, coursework and, ultimately, the right job.
An avid writer and speaker on the topic of career trends, Allison is the NY Career Change Examiner, and also writes a blog for her own website www.allisoncheston.com. An entrepreneur with cross-cultural expertise, Cheston holds a BA from the University of Michigan in International Relations & Romance Languages, and an MA in International Education and a Certificate in Adult Career Planning from New York University. She lives in New York City, and is the mother of two teenagers.
Sam Coren is the Content Manager for StudentAdvisor.com, a Washington Post education site for college reviews and free resources on all things college. You can read more of her insights about the college search process on the StudentAdvisor blog.
Pamela Ellis, MBA, PhD, aka “The Education Doctor®” is a scholar, family advocate, radio show host, and founder of Compass Education Strategies, LLC. Compass is a research-based consulting firm that helps families navigate education options and helps students find and apply to education settings where they can thrive and graduate. Compass’ key areas of research are transition, retention, and student stress. Dr. Pamela advises families across the US who are seeking admission to boarding schools, colleges, and graduate schools.
In addition to advising students and families, Dr. Pamela has over 20 years consulting experience in the private sector and field of education with state education agencies, school districts, and higher education. Her advising and client focus is informed by current education research and professional experience as a researcher and teacher. Dr. Pamela graduated from Stanford University with a Bachelor of Arts in linguistics, before earning a Masters of Business Administration from The Tuck School at Dartmouth College. She completed her PhD from Stanford University School of Education. Dr. Pamela is also the voice of The Education Doctor® Radio Show which features practical and relevant education issues to support academic achievement and parent engagement on blogtalkradio.com.
Stephen Friedfeld is the co-founder of AcceptU. Stephen was an Assistant Dean of Admissions at Cornell University for four years and an Associate Dean at Princeton University for six years. He also worked as an independent college consultant for four years.
Ellen Frishberg is an Aristotle Circle expert with a long career in enrollment and financial aid services at some of the nation’s most selective colleges and universities, including Johns Hopkins. A recognized financial aid policy and process expert, Ellen served for many years on national financial aid, admissions and scholarship selection committees. She has also worked as a consultant on improving student aid processes at the US Department of Education, and represented 800 private college presidents as a student aid advocate.
Ellen has written extensively on admission and financial aid; for example, she served as technical editor for the Financial Aid for Dummies series. Ellen received her doctorate in Higher Education Management from the University of Pennsylvania.
JENNY FRIEDMAN, Ph.D.
Jenny Friedman, Ph.D. is founder and Executive Director of Doing Good Together, a Twin Cities–based nonprofit that inspires and equips people to raise children who care and contribute. She is author of The Busy Family’s Guide to Volunteering and co-author of Doing Good Together: 101 Easy, Meaningful Service Projects for Families, Schools and Communities.
Andrea Glovsky has been specializing in College Admissions Counseling for over 25 years. Whether you are applying to college, looking for a prep school, seeking advice about your adolescent, the process can be overwhelming. In this fast-paced world of information overload, it is essential to have personalized assistance to take you through the maze. Andrea Glovsky of AMG Educational Consultants saves you time, worry and lets you avoid needless family battles. Counseling in the college and independent school placement field since 1988, Andrea Glovsky has successfully helped hundreds of students by matching interests and abilities to the most appropriate school. Find her at www.findingcolleges.com or email Andrea at firstname.lastname@example.org.
DR. JILL GREENBAUM
Dr. Jill Greenbaum is an innovator in coaching teens and parents during the college search, using a strengths-based approach with teens to help them understand themselves, meet challenges, and learn to manage-and even enjoy-parts of this process. Her visual coaching style encourages self awareness, enhances self esteem, reduces distress, facilitates growth and goal achievement, and it sets Jill apart from her colleagues. Her clients say she is keenly tuned into their needs as teens in the midst of the confusing, anxiety-provoking, and often overwhelming college search process. Visit her website, www.majorinyou.com.
DR. RAYMOND HUNTINGTON
Dr. Raymond Huntington and his wife, Eileen, founded Huntington Learning Center in 1977. Since then, Huntington has grown to become a leader in the tutoring industry, providing students supplemental instruction in many subjects and preparation programs for the SAT, PSAT, ACT, and state and standardized entrance exams.
DR. REBECCA JOSEPH
Dr. Joseph is a college access and admissions expert. A tenured professor at a local university, she believes that all students should have the option of a college education and does everything she can to help students, communities, and schools empower their students to make it to and through college. She is an expert in college admissions, especially application essays, and writes ongoing tips to help prepare students, families, and college advocates throughout the complex college readiness and application process. She also volunteers at school sites, Upward Bound, and the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation to help their students write powerful college and scholarship application essays. Last year she released an IPhone and IPad app–All College Essays that provides all the college application essays students need to write for their applications. To find more tips and advice, go to her site: getmetocollege.org.
Andrew is the founder, managing partner, and longest tenured tutor on the Veritas Tutors staff. Formally tutoring since the age of 14, he has logged nearly four thousand hours of one-on-one instruction with every type of student from prep schoolers to juvenile prisoners in most every subject from Latin to Calculus. Andrew also makes a continual effort to reach out to those students who cannot otherwise afford to reach him. When he is not mentoring students or coordinating our dedicated volunteer corps, he is also the Direct of Admissions at Veritas and author of the book, How to Get into Your Harvard.
Andrew Miller-Smith, 18, recently graduated from Buckingham Browne & Nichols School. This fall he will attend Bowdoin College in Brunswick, Maine, where he will continue to volunteer in local communities. He loves to run, bike, and play tennis and enjoys reading, writing, and playing the piano.
Bara Sapir, M.A.,is an internationally recognized expert in high-performance coaching and test preparation. She is a pioneer in bringing holistic techniques to the test preparation field. Her company, TPNY, is the only one to combine content mastery with optimizing test-taking results by anxiety reduction, concentration, and confidence enhancement. TPNY produced the Full Potential Audio Course – a unique interactive 5 hour course for high-stakes standardized tests. Sapir also created the revolutionary course, MindFlow™, which is the only SAT/ACT class that specializes in improving students’ time management and Critical Reading performance. Through advanced reading methods, speed reading, test-taking strategy, and positive mindset methods, MindFlow™ students’ test scores improve an average of 13% from the one-day/5 hour class. Sapir has coached hundreds of clients, and has over twenty years’ experience in teaching test prep, including six years as an instructor for The Princeton Review. She is co-author of a forthcoming GMAT book, soon to be published by Nova Press. She holds Masters’ degrees in Education and Art History, certifications in Hypnosis and Neurolingistic Programming, and is a Reiki practitioner. She lives in New York City with her rescue pup, Eloise.
Jane Sarouhan is Vice President of The Center for Interim Programs. As a passionate educator and experienced administrator, she is committed to serving the needs and interests of young adults, parents and fellow professionals as they explore their own exciting next steps in life’s education.
Jason has dedicated his career to being an inspiring role model for his students and staff. As a committed educator, he is devoted to supporting individuals in clarifying their interests and taking continued steps towards self-discovery, the essence of his work as a gap-year counselor with The Center for Interim Programs.
Marie founded TeenLife Media in 2007. The idea for this company emerged when Marie moved with her family to Boston in 2003 and found that there were no websites or print publications that helped families with middle and high school age children (like hers) to find activities and programs, especially over the summer.
Marie’s career includes over seven years of experience as a marketing executive at American Express and ten years as a senior marketing and business development executive in the financial services and publishing industry. She has held leadership positions at several non-profits and at her sons’ schools. She has a BSE from Princeton University and an MBA from the Harvard Business School.
Ruth Vedvik has held the position of Director of Admissions at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Ball State University, and Agnes Scott College.
Together, Carol and Ruth have over 70 years of experience in the college admissions and financial aid industry, and for the past 15 and 9 years (respectively) as principals at Hardwick-Day, an enrollment consulting firm that works with the admissions and financial aid offices of private colleges and universities. Through Hardwick-Day, they have consulted on financial aid policy at dozens of colleges, including Whittier, Grinnell, Mills, Randolph-Macon, and Xavier University, among others.
Jill Suskind, M.Ed. is a 25-year veteran public school teacher. Since 2007, she has been working with parents and their teens, providing innovative, practical, and effective resources and guidance for preparing teens for adulthood with positive money habits and attitudes. You can learn more about her work at www.yourteensmoneyskills.com.
Jill Tipograph is a nationally recognized youth and summer expert and family consultant. She is the only independent summer planning expert, founder of Everything Summer, LLC and the author of Your Everything Summer Guide & Planner. Jill is passionate about identifying and designing the right summer experiences for kids, teens, and young adults, from camps to careers (for nearly two decades). She is involved in a number of non-profits, including the American Camp Association’s Teen Leadership Conference, Summer Camp Opportunities Provide an Edge (SCOPE), as well as women’s and mothers’ organizations.
Jill is a summer youth authority and the ‘go to’ national media resource for kids and teens, having been featured in numerous print, TV and online sources, including: The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, USA Today, NBC’s Today Show, NBC’s Evening News, NBC’s New York Live, ABC News, WPIX-TV News, MSNBC, Forbes.com, iVillage.com, Business Week, CBSMoneyWatch.com, Smart Money, Parents TV and more. Jill is the SheKnows.com Summer Camp Expert, giving nearly 18,000,000 monthly site visitors the inside scoop on everything camp and summer. She also speaks on summer and youth topics throughout the year at educational institutions, organizations and corporations.
Neal Waldman is an Aristotle Circle expert on summer programs and is Vice President of Individual Academic Programs at WorldStrides. Having also co-founded Summer Discovery at UCLA, pre-college enrichment program, Neal has years of experience helping high school students make the most of their summer programs, leadership opportunities, and extracurricular activities.
Scott Weighart is a Career Development and Communications Consultant with over 15 years of experience in higher education. Based near Boston, Scott is the author of five books, including Find Your First Professional Job. While in the Department of Cooperative Education at Northeastern University, he worked closely with students and employers on career preparation. He now consults to universities and corporations on a variety of issues, including recruiting. He also can be hired as a career coach for individuals ranging from high school students to seasoned professionals.
Kimberly Wolf, M.Ed. is the founder of Girlmentum Media, Inc. and ShimmerTeen.com, a health, wellness, and lifestyle site for teenage girls. Her dynamic experience as a teacher, mentor, and media executive gives her particular insight into finding, creating, and communicating engaging information to tees. She has worked with teen-focused organizations such as TeenLine, StepUp Women’s Network, and WriteGirl, and she has worked in cause marketing for companies including Jesse Dylan’s Wondros (formerly FreeForm) and TeenLife Media.
Kimberly graduated from Brown University with honors in Women’s Studies. She also holds an M.Ed. in Human Development and Psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
She has been quoted on CNN.com, WebMD, and Health.com (under her maiden name, Kimberly Spector). As a national speaker, she has addressed communities at Cornell University, Brentwood School’s “It’s Our Turn” Young Women’s Conference, and individual middle and high schools.
Alexandra Zabriskie started tutoring 10 years ago when she was in graduate school, and has never stopped. Now a full-time practitioner based in her native New York, she tutors standardized tests (SAT, ACT, ISEE, SHSAT, GRE, GMAT to name a few) and academic subjects (Literature, French, Algebra, Geometry, AP courses, Essay Writing, etc.). Drawing upon her own experience and education (she graduated cum laude from Princeton University) Alexandra has an uncanny ability to engage students of any age, and has a proven track record of bringing out the best in each individual, covering everything from A to Z.
Julia Rogers is a professional gap year adviser based in Stowe, Vermont, and founder of EnRoute
Consulting. Rogers works to engage young Americans across the country in service work, experiential
education and travel as a way of learning about themselves and the world around them. In addition to
private consultations, Rogers enthusiastically advocates for the popularization of the gap year through
public talks, visits to high schools and networking with guidance counselors and family professionals.