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Don't Stalk the Admissions Officer: How to Survive the College Admissions Process without Losing Your Mind [Kindle Edition]

Risa Lewak
4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)

Print List Price: $13.99
Kindle Price: $9.99
You Save: $4.00 (29%)
Sold by: Random House LLC

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Book Description

The college admissions process is:
   A) Similar to gallbladder surgery without anesthesia
   B) Worse than watching American Idol auditions without earplugs
   C) Soul-destroying, ego-crushing, and life-sucking
   D) Actually kind of funny when you think about it
   E) All of the above
There’s no denying it: Applying to college is a grueling journey just shy of cruel and unusual punishment. But that doesn’t mean you can’t laugh along the way. If college is on your horizon, Don’t Stalk the Admissions Officer shows you how to ace the tricky application process—while maintaining your sense of humor and sanity. Former pre-admissions counselor Risa Lewak empowers you to craft a killer essay, choose between the SAT and ACT, score stellar recommendations, nail the interview, handle overly involved parents, and more. You’ll also learn how to navigate crucial post-application issues, like financial aid, rejection, and deciding whether to take a year off. Packed with insider tips, helpful suggestions, and laugh-out-loud anecdotes, this savvy handbook gives you the know-how and confidence to conquer this stressful rite of passage . . . and minimize nervous breakdowns.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

Editorial Reviews


“An insightful, entertaining, and fun read. The anecdotes and quizzes help make the college admissions process a little less stressful.”
—Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of and

“In this refreshing guide, Risa Lewak offers some great advice wrapped up in the humor of it all; the perfect antidote to the insanity.”
—Marilee Jones, former dean of admissions at MIT

“This well-paced read provides sane, reasonable ways for applicants to communicate effectively, remain authentic, and work with their advocates.”
—Bruce Poch, dean of admissions at Pomona College

About the Author

A former pre-admissions counselor and recruiter at Hunter College, RISA LEWAK, MSEd, leads workshops to help prospective college students and their parents minimize the stress of the application process. She is an alumni interviewer for the University of Pennsylvania, a frequent speaker at high schools and college fairs, and a regular contributor to popular college prep websites, including and

Product Details

  • File Size: 321 KB
  • Print Length: 198 pages
  • Publisher: Ten Speed Press (June 30, 2010)
  • Sold by: Random House LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0036S49SM
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Lending: Not Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #946,844 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I laughed While I learned September 6, 2010
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Don't Stalk the Admissions Officer is a rare "get into college" help book. It gives real life, practical tips that will help both high schoolers and their parents get through the process. But what makes it so awesome is that every page offers laughs at how preposterous the whole affair has become. From lampooning overachievers to slackers, dull-witted high school guidance counselors and helicopter parents, no one gets out unscathed. You might see yourself, too.
But Lewak offers some sage advice that could be life changing for a lot of people. She highlights the benefits of community college. And doing after school activities that really mean something to you, and done not just for impressing a college admissions officer. These might sound like simple ideas, but if many students followed this advice, they and their parents would be a lot happier. And richer! Finally, a college guide that recognizes that kids should enjoy high school and not spend those four years thinking only of the future. A must-read for kids and parents about to take the college admissions plunge...
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Finally a College Guide with Humor! August 18, 2010
I stumbled upon this book in Borders and couldn't put it down. It was absolutely hilarious, and I only wish it had been available when I was applying to college a decade ago. Not only does it provide extremely relevant tips for high school students of all ages, it also provides some levity to an area that is in dire need of it. I work with adolescents and will be recommending that they check it out.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Guidance + entertainment = A+! August 13, 2010
This book is a great choice for students, parents, and anyone interested in--or stressed out over--the college admissions process. The author offers helpful information and guidance, interlaced with witty humor and very funny anecdotes, to help ease the stress from the admissions process. I highly recommend it.Don't Stalk the Admissions Officer: How to Survive the College Admissions Process without Losing Your Mind
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Informative September 5, 2010
"The College Admissions process can be overwhelming. Here's some help:
p.31-What to do when you have no idea where to apply
p.80-After the College Tour and Info Session
p.113-Write a strong essay that reflects you
p.136-What Admission Officers Hate
p.140- What Admission Officers Love
p.162-How to Choose the Right School"
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5.0 out of 5 stars Stalk this book! August 8, 2010
[The following review has been excerpted from The College Whisperer, [...]]

The advice offered Don't Stalk the Admissions Officer: How to Survive the College Admissions Process without Losing Your Mind, while tongue in cheek (and sometimes, in your belly button) is right on, sprinkled with truisms ("the only voice that's important in the college decision-making is your own") and poignantly stating the obvious (to wit, that the college admissions process, with all of its attendant insanities and inanities, is absurd).

This is comic relief (think Robin Williams and Billy Crystal as your college tour guides) at its very best, at a time when you -- students and parents alike -- need it most. Both website and book are gems amidst the coal in the college admissions deep, dark mine. [Gee, I hope The College Whisperer gets quoted on the book's jacket. Do books still have jackets? Uh, not paperbacks. Sorry.]

Perhaps the best advice offered is that which The College Whisperer has been giving to students, parents, and his own daughters all along: Relax. You'll get into college. Maybe not your first choice, or even your second, but a great college, nonetheless. You will survive this tedious and sometimes sophomoric process, to find yourself stronger (if not a bit lighter in the wallet), bound for four spectacular years that you will remember fondly for the rest of your lives.

So, have fun with the admissions process (even stalk your guidance counselor. Heck, you'll never see him again, anyway! j/k). Okay, don't complete the Common App in crayon (is such a thing possible?), but as Risa Lewak so aptly concludes, "laugh at the absurdity of college admissions.
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