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Brandon, Doctoral Candidate

What were your goals for college admission? Did you accomplish them?

My goals for college admission were two-fold. Firstly, I wanted to achieve scores on the SAT and ACT that were
competitive for schools in Montana (especially the University of Montana) and surrounding states, since I wanted to be close to family. Secondly, I wanted to gain admission into the Davidson Honors College (DHC) on campus, since this would allow me to graduate with university scholar distinction. Through Kelly’s mentorship, I accomplished both goals. I attained
scores on the SAT and ACT that allowed me to attend the University of Montana and enter the DHC (I later graduated with the university scholar distinction).

What was most helpful about working with Hughes College Prep?

The most helpful thing about working with Hughes College Prep was the individually-tailored plan that allowed me to
succeed. Kelly helped to capitalize on my strengths, such as those within the science and language realms, and to overcome my weaknesses (e.g., math formulas that I had not used since middle school!). Kelly’s life coaching skills also helped greatly.

What was the biggest surprise, good or bad, about the admissions process in general?

My biggest surprise about the admission process was how easily I met the competitive range of scores for admission after Hughes College Prep.

Were you accepted to one of your top three school choices (undergrad or grad school)?

I was indeed accepted into my top choices for both undergraduate training and graduate school. My top choice was the University of Montana, and since I was able to enroll and have such a great experience at UM, I decided that I should also continue with my doctoral training at this university. Consequently, UM became my top choice for graduate school, and they accepted me into their program.

Did you feel supported by Hughes College Prep during the admission process? If so, how?

I felt greatly supported by Hughes College Prep during the admission process. Kelly cares greatly for each of her mentees, and she pushed to bring out the best in me, both scholastically and in other areas of my life.

What surprised you most about working with Hughes College Prep?

My biggest surprise about working with Hughes College Prep was Kelly’s determination – it was contagious. Additionally, Kelly conducted herself in a very professional and responsible fashion, and was always prepared.

Are there any aspects of your time with Hughes that stick out as having carried through to other elements of your life, beyond college admissions, such as college, jobs, etc.? 

One memorable component of receiving services at Hughes College Prep was that Kelly was able to assist with each stage of my scholastic development. For example, she had the knowledge to not only help to prepare me for the SAT and ACT, but also continue with my GRE preparation to apply to graduate school. This really highlights the broad scope of competence at Hughes.

How soon after graduating college were you employed?

I took a year off between my undergraduate and graduate studies, so I did seek employment after my undergraduate graduation.
It took me around three weeks to find employment within my field of study.

What is one bit of advice you would give to parents of college-bound students?

A bit of advice I would offer to parents of college-bound students is that the competitive edge offered by college prep services, such as Hughes College Prep, can be life changing for several reasons. Any encouragement to invest into oneself, and one’s future, is worthwhile.

What is one bit of advice you would give to the students themselves?

Some advice I would offer to the students themselves is to be open about trying college prep. When I look back on what I
learned through Hughes College Prep, every minute counted. It formed the foundation to get me to where I am today, and I am incredibly grateful for the opportunity to grow and learn through Hughes College Prep.