Spring To-Do List for Juniors:

Spring for juniors means prom dresses and corsages, soaking up the sun over spring break, and enjoying outdoor sports like lacrosse and baseball. But juniors may also feel very stressed, as their academic and college journeys culminate in a collision of important events. The pressure of SAT/ACT tests, AP exams, trying to do the best […]

US Colleges and Universities and Extracurricular Activities

The “Liberal Arts” model of education favored by many US colleges and universities promotes the development of critical thinking and the broad value of learning from one’s peers over direct training for any one profession or career. As a result, admissions to many of these schools can seem opaque, and at least equally focused on […]

Studying in Glasgow, Scotland

Glasgow, Scotland is home to several renowned and well-respected universities, including the University of Glasgow, University of Strathclyde, Glasgow Caledonian University, and Glasgow School of Art. Glasgow is one of the more affordable cities in the UK for international students, with lower tuition fees and living costs compared to other major cities (Approx. $31,000./year US$). […]

“To Test or Not to Test” as the SAT and ACT make a Comeback

At the end of 2023, we noted in our 2024 College Admission Trends and Predictions that “even in the current, widely test-optional admissions landscape, testing continues to occupy a lot of real estate in each student’s mind as they consider and plan their application process.” Now, with several colleges again requiring testing in some form […]

Comparing IE University (Spain) and Bocconi University (Italy)

If you are a student from the U.S., or an international student looking for a great college experience in Europe, consider IE University in Segovia, Spain or Bocconi University in Milan, Italy.  Bocconi has traditionally been considered a top European business school, and Milan offers a rich cultural backdrop for your studies. While all that […]

Glasgow, Scotland: An Underrated Academic Destination

Glasgow, Scotland, beckons with its rich academic heritage and vibrant cultural scene, making it a prime destination for students seeking quality education and an unforgettable experience. Here’s a comprehensive overview of studying in Glasgow, including highlights from the University of Glasgow, University of Strathclyde, and Glasgow Caledonian University. Why Glasgow? Glasgow boasts a cluster of […]

The Importance of College Visits

An American phenomenon that is spreading to other countries – not unlike Levi’s and Coca-Cola in the 80’s and hopefully healthier than the bizarrely ubiquitous KFC – is the concept of touring a university campus before one applies. However, the purposes and procedures for college visits in the US are distinctly different from those in […]

Getting Started with Applications Early!

Every November, we get some from international families of seniors seeking application assistance. Sacre bleu! Mamma mia! Or as my mother-in-law says, “Maria Petruchka Petrovna”! No, mi amigo, you must start early! We strongly encourage students to do most of their application work during the summer before their final year of high school. They don’t […]

The Seed, the Sapling, and the Sequoia

My favorite time of year is when winter dissolves away and I begin my search for the magic and beauty that is Mother Nature and the emergence of new life. It inspires me in my work with students, and it also humbles me to know what little control we can have over those things that […]

School Decisions and What it All Means

Since the January 15th application deadline, students have patiently waited for their decisions to arrive, while admissions offices have been hard at work reading essays, reviewing interview notes, and discussing applicants.  Soon, they will notify students and families of their decisions:  Accept, Deny, or Waitlist. For students with a balanced list of schools, they will […]

Four Factors to Consider When Scheduling Your Spring Campus Visits

Visiting college campuses is often the first step students take in taking the abstract concept of college and translating it to the real world. These initial visits serve as an introduction to college life and an opportunity for students to start building the framework they will use to make important decisions later in the process. […]

2024 College Admissions Trends and Predictions

In 2023, our team continued to prioritize post-pandemic travel, visiting campuses all throughout the US, Europe, Canada and the UK, deepening our relationships and knowledge, and taking the temperature of the higher education world during what continues to be an intensely disruptive time in college admissions, and on college and university campuses.  We have loved […]

“The Waiting Is The Hardest Part”: Timely Advice for High School Seniors

Okay, first, if you teens don’t know who Tom Petty is, ask your parents. They have so  much to teach you about great music.  Most seniors in high school have now submitted all of their applications, and all of that frantic adrenaline pushing you through late night edits of last-minute supplements is just simmering beneath […]

Living Our 2024 Theme: Four Ways I Commit to “Cultivating Our Garden” This Year

Living Our 2024 Theme: Four Ways I Commit to “Cultivating Our Garden” This Year Each year at McMillan Education we collectively embrace a theme to inspire our work with our students. In 2022 we adopted the Fish Philosophy, where we brought to our work the same fun-loving, fish-flinging passion the happy fishmongers do at the […]

University of Edinburgh

Consisting of 45,000 students, The University of Edinburgh comprises a pair of urban campuses in the heart of Scotland’s major city, a historic pearl with a Royal Mile lined with tartan shops and pubs that culminates at the Edinburgh Castle, which crests a hill and dominates the Old Town. A hipper vibe balances the traditional […]

Visiting the University of Glasgow: “Changing History Since 1451”

On a crisp afternoon in early November, my colleague Amy Christie and I visited the University of Glasgow, the 2023 Scottish University of the Year that is ranked the number two university in Scotland. Located in the heart of the historic part of town, Glasgow’s campus was teeming with students from all around the world. […]

Exploring Universities in Dublin

Ireland’s major cities are smaller and easier to navigate than many of the world’s other major cities, yet they are also vibrant and culturally sophisticated.  A walk through Dublin will combine ancient history with thriving commerce and cultural liveliness, and yet you will not see a high-rise building anywhere in the city. The major universities […]

University of St. Andrews

Town of St. Andrews:  24K population University: 10,000 students (8K undergraduates) 40% of students from outside of UK, draws from 140 countries Approx. 1,000 Americans 180 and growing clubs & “societies” More than 50 sports offered, at least 3 different levels (competitive, which requires tryouts, to recreational), big part of social life Guaranteed housing for […]

Mythbusters and Hidden Gems: Going to a Good College

I always chuckle when I suggest a college name to a family and someone responds, “I’ve never heard of that.” Um, yeah. That’s why you need me. I’m a professional educational consultant. I know about more colleges than the average Joe. Fear not, for behold: I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall […]

Summer 2024 Enrichment – How to Combine Exploration, Growth – and some Fun!

We think it’s wisest for students interested in applying to the US, for both their own personal growth and  the development of their candidacy, to explore new enrichment opportunities or extracurricular passions during the summer. American universities value students who demonstrate initiative, curiosity, leadership, and risk taking, and these types of opportunities can consist of […]

Explore Your Passions Through Arts, Athletics, and Extracurriculars

Share Your Story Engaging in the school application process is exciting, but can also feel like an intensive process. Beyond the academic discoveries on your visits, you will also want/need to explore all those things that make schools so special, including the arts, athletics, and special programs and opportunities. Students do not need to be […]

Writing Authentic Essays: Avoiding the Chat GPT Dark Side

Time for some trivia! Who said, “It’s against my programming to impersonate a deity”? If you answered C3PO, the beloved droid from the Star Wars movies, you’re right! For those of us who grew up in the 80’s, we loved immersing ourselves in the world of robot comrades, where machines fought alongside our heroes and […]