Toronto's expert on U.S. universities


Your child’s post-secondary education is one of the biggest investments you will make as a parent

Help them find the right school 

As a parent you want the best for your child. If you are serious about sending your son or daughter to an American university, hiring an educational consultant who specializes in U.S. schools and admissions is a sound investment decision. Here are five compelling reasons:

Reduce stress, confusion, and anxiety

Applying to U.S. schools is a lengthy, complex process for students and parents alike. At any point throughout the process, arguments may erupt and emotions may cloud sound judgment. A consultant can serve as a neutral third party who will help alleviate the enormous pressure on students, streamline the application process itself, and provide parents with peace of mind that tasks will get done on time.

Save time

There are thousands of U.S. schools, and each has something to offer your child. Understanding each school’s advantages and disadvantages, deciphering “admissions speak”, and seeing beyond the slick marketing presents obstacles. A consultant can cut through the noise, freeing up valuable time, so you can spend less time worrying and more time encouraging.

Save money

Attending a U.S. school is a serious financial commitment that can cost over $300,000. A consultant can help identify schools offering merit scholarships or other incentives that reduce this burden. A consultant can also recommend schools where your son or daughter has the best chance of fitting in and therefore greatly avoid the likelihood—and cost—of transferring schools.

Give your child a competitive edge

Good U.S. schools can afford to be selective. While high school guidance counselors are valuable resources, as generalists they seldom have in-depth experience with the American system. A consultant can fill this gap and offer their expertise in the nuanced world of U.S. college admissions—what schools actually look for as opposed to what people think they look for. They can help your child put his or her best foot forward, especially at two critical junctures: personal essay writing and interviews.

Build your child’s self-confidence and self-esteem

A good consultant will take the time to learn about your child’s strengths and will teach him or her how to articulate these qualities effectively. This, along with the support received throughout the application process, will ensure your son or daughter enters university with a positive attitude, ready for this exciting stage in their lives.  


this is my passion


My name is Colleen Reed and I am doing what I love at American College Consulting. Every day I have the privilege of helping young people get into their dream schools.

My journey started when I was a student at Brown University. I loved the diversity of the student body, the intellectually curious culture on campus, the freedom to explore, and the lifelong friendships I still cherish.

After college, I took a job leading educational tours for high school groups in Washington, D.C. and met thousands of young people from across the U.S. I loved connecting with them as individuals, encouraging them to learn from each other, and challenging them to become engaged students. I realized education is my passion.

Along the way I married my Brown lacrosse-playing boyfriend (a Canadian!) and moved to British Columbia and eventually to Ontario. I became a high school teacher and taught Canadian History and English for several years. Watching students become capable adults who believed in themselves was, without a doubt, my greatest reward.

Throughout this time, I kept my connection to my alma mater active. As an admissions interviewer for Brown, I met hundreds of high school students and listened to them talk about why they wanted to attend the University and what they wanted to do with their lives.

After 20 years of interviewing prospective students and 10 years of teaching high school students, I started American College Consulting in Toronto in 2008.

My commitment to you is twofold: (1) to always have your child’s best interest at heart and (2) to be an empathetic figure with whom your child can have open, honest conversations. As an experienced educational consultant, and as a mother who has sent her own daughters stateside to study, I can help take the worry out of applying to U.S. schools.



Professional memberships


these are my services


1. get to know your child

  • Review transcripts, extracurricular programs, honors, awards and outstanding talents
  • Recommend ways to emphasize strengths, successes, and achievements
  • Inventory future priorities
  • Conduct personality and aptitude tests

2. Build the perfect college list

  • Explore priorities including programs, location, size, extracurricular opportunities, etc.
  • Identify special admission opportunities and unique programs
  • Draft preliminary list of schools that match needs, desires, and aspirations



3. Maximize value of college visits and tours

  • Suggest college visit itineraries
  • Provide lists of questions to ask admission officers and tour guides
  • Discuss strategies to maximize amount of information gleaned from visit 

4. Elevate essays and personal statements

  • Brainstorm essay topics
  • Suggest ideas for format, structure, and content to demonstrate synergy between the student and the universities
  • Provide continuous feedback on revisions
  • Encourage students to showcase strength of character in their own voice
  • Ensure all essay responses coherently present the student in the best light


5. strategize interviews

  • Share inside tips about college admission interviews
  • Provide list of potential interview questions and help prepare answers in advance so students feel comfortable and confident

6. Manage the application process

  • Collaborate on building effective resume
  • Select suitable teachers to write letters of recommendation
  • Decide together whether to apply for Early Decision or Early Action
  • Map out a timeline to complete all applications and supporting materials
  • Manage deadlines


Support for athletes

As a former member of the U.S. Junior World Figure Skating Team, I understand firsthand the demands of elite athletics. 

That is why many of my clients are student-athletes. I have worked with baseball players, basketball players, fencers, hockey players, skiers, soccer players, swimmers, tennis players, track athletes, rowers, volleyball players, and more. For clients who may be looking to play NCAA sports, I can provide more targeted support:

  • Craft athletic resume and cover letter geared towards coaches
  • Identify NCAA Division 1, 2, and 3, NAIA and Junior College options
  • Prepare for Official Visits
  • Assist negotiating scholarship offers


Canadian universities reliably offer a high quality education and stable learning environment. If your child wants to attend university in Canada as an international student, I can help ensure you are informed about your options and are leveraging the right strategies to optimize the application process.




American University

Babson College

Barnard College

Bentley University

Berklee College of Music

Binghamton SUNY

Boston College

Boston University

Brandeis University

Brown University

Bucknell University

Case Western Reserve University

Carleton College

Carnegie Mellon University

Chapman University

Clark University

Clemson University

Claremont McKenna College

Colby College

Colgate University

Columbia University

College of William and Mary

Connecticut College

Cornell University

Dartmouth College

DePauw University

Duke University

Eckerd College

Elon University

Emerson College

Emory University

Fordham University

Georgetown University

Georgia Institute of Technology

Hamilton College

Harvard University

Indiana University

Ithaca College

Johns Hopkins University

Kenyon College

Lawrence University

Lehigh University

Lewis & Clark College

London School of Economics

Loyola Marymount University (CA)

Lynn University

Macalester College

Middlebury College

New York University

Northeastern University

Northwestern University

Notre Dame University

Ohio State University

Pitzer College

Pennsylvania State University 

Pomona College

Rice University

Rochester Institute of Technology

Santa Clara University

Sara Lawrence College

Savannah College of Art and Design

Skidmore College

St. Lawrence University

Stanford University

Syracuse University

Swarthmore College

Tufts University

Tulane University

University College Dublin

University of California - Berkeley, Los Angeles,

University of Colorado - Boulder

University of Chicago

University of Denver

University of Miami

University of Michigan 

University of New Hampshire

University of Redlands

University of Richmond

University of Rochester

University of St. Andrews, Scotland

University of Tampa

University of Vermont

Vanderbilt University

Vassar College

Wake Forest University

Washington University St. Louis

Wesleyan University

Yale University­­­


Satisfied clients


"We could never have navigated the U.S. system without Colleen. It would have been extremely overwhelming without her help and we would not have known where to start."

—Cassandra, Oakville

"It was really nice to have Colleen as a partner in the process other than just my child and the school counselor. She provided an objective perspective, from a position of in-depth knowledge of both the Canadian kid and the U.S. system."

—Sally, Toronto


"She was readily available whenever my son needed her or had a question. She also had information on how to go about getting help/tutoring with the ACT. Also, she has actually been to these colleges, whereas our high school counselors hadn’t even heard of the schools."

—Kathy, Oakville

"Colleen is extremely knowledgeable about a vast number of universities and their acceptance requirements. She narrows the choices down for each student based on their wants and needs. She took the time to work one on one with our daughter to analyze which universities would be the right fit."

—Perri, Toronto


"I want to thank you for all your time and expertise guiding our daughter (and her parents!) through the US application process. You always made sure she was one step ahead of where she needed to be. Although we are very close, I think having us in the background while she was dealing directly with you on all the logistics, drafts, and strategy was incredibly beneficial for all. We were able to discuss without emotion, and without the stress of wondering if we were on top of everything. Our daughter really trusts you and values all your guidance. Thank you for providing such a stable platform."

—Alison, Toronto

"We interviewed other university consultants and found Colleen to be a perfect fit for our daughter. She was approachable, encouraging, and knowledgeable. We would highly recommen­d her services to anyone looking to send their children to an international school."

—Paul, Toronto


learn more through a free consultation


It is never too early or too late to plan for your child’s college admissions. Please get in touch to learn more about how I can help your family through this exciting process. 


Tel: 416-271-9674