The ghostly apparitions that appear at your front door disguised as the Common App. Goblins that stealthily roam your laptop at night, scrambling the letters on your personal statement and supplemental essays. And fear of all fear, as witches and warlocks gather 'round the cauldron at the college admissions office.

Be afraid. Be very afraid. The college application season is upon us!

And if the process of applying to college wasn't itself haunting, then surely the selectivity that has become the hallmark of colleges and universities across the great pumpkin patch is enough to make you cough up every last candy corn.

Think we're playing a nasty trick on you? Think again.

Just look at a few of the grade/score averages (courtesy of for the admitted college classes of 2016:

College                                            GPA      SAT Math      SAT Verbal      SAT Writing   ACT
Tulane University                               3.99         656                 672                  677               30
Northeastern                                      4.06         654                 633                  642               29
Virginia Tech                                      3.97         648                 622                  616               28
Syracuse                                             3.73         608                 612                  610               28
Binghamton                                       3.93          641                622                  634               30

Need we go on? "Competitive" does not begin to describe just how tough it has become to gain admission to the college of choice. Downright frightening is what most people call it!

Yes, the road to college can be scary, with ghouls, goblins and more than a few witches popping out along the way to frighten both students and parents (most of whom, Halloween haunts notwithstanding, are already, shall we say, unnerved).

Is you application accurate? Has your essay given you voice among the cacophony (great SAT word) of hoots and hollers raised by your fellow college-bound compatriots? Did you complete every required section and answer each question on your application? Is it good enough to get you in? What about those Supplements? And how the heck do you pay for and submit this &^%$#@! Common App? Will those college application tricks defer your college admission treats?

Applying to college should not be a hair-raising experience, essays, resumes, activity sheets, and those howling supplements masking the true you, and all you are capable of doing, being, achieving. Certainly, the last thing you want to do is scare off the one admission officer you want most to impress.

So, don't just get your college applications done. Get them done correctly, accurately and completely.

College is a six-figure investment. Before you hit that "SUBMIT" button, consult with your "college investment advisor".

And by the way, have a happy, and safe, Halloween!

Plan. Prepare. Prevail!

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of The College Whisperer.

Who knows what peril lurks in the college application and admissions process? The College Whisperer knows. . .

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