Education

This start-up guides students through the admissions maze

NS Vageesh Mumbai | Updated on January 16, 2018

Ajay Singh, Founder & CEO, Stoodnt.com

Ramdas Sunder, Managing Director, India & South Asia

Stoodnt.com counsels students seeking admission into top colleges in the US

If you have a teenager at home, the chances are you are beginning to think about where you should send him or her for undergraduate studies. The case for sending them to a good school/college abroad (provided you can afford it) is already made in an era of high competition and globalisation. But the options are dizzying and the admission processes confusing.

Enter Stoodnt.com, a new start-up in the counselling space that hopes to de-mystify the whole process by offering professional help in navigating the many processes by which college admission in top colleges in the US is secured. Stoodnt.com offers a platform that enables student get access to best counselling services to get into those top colleges.

Ajay Singh, Founder & CEO, and Ramdas Sunder, Managing Director,India & South Asia, who met 25 years ago in the US when they joined a chip design firm, have used their own experience as students and those of their acquaintances and friends who went through a number of pain points during the admission process.

Right institution

They underscore the importance of getting into the right institution and the right course and the lift it gives to one’s career. Today, that happens either through a combination of great effort on the part of individual students, helped by the experience of someone in the immediate family/friends circle who has done the same journey or through the efforts of agencies – who are not all above board. There is, therefore, a space for a fair-priced offering that will not exploit ignorance but give value that makes a significant difference to the aspirations of many youngsters, Singh said.

Presenting an attractive case on why they would be an appropriate candidate or the right fit for the college is a challenge for many students going abroad.

Ramdas said that professional counselling will not ‘create’ a resume but can help unveil your strengths and present them in the best possible manner. Simply put, the counsellors will not write your essays or do your work for you. That is something the student has to do himself in order to be authentic and ethical. But counsellors can help in that process – often identifying gaps between different documents and ensuring they are properly filled or explained.

For instance, if a student has demonstrated leadership qualities or done some community service or maybe learned other skills, these can be highlighted to advantage. There is something of the order of 50-100 hours of work that has to be put in by a counsellor in the entire process. Ramdas also makes clear that the company will not guarantee an admission. There is a package deal which comes at around $3500 which will include different modules – from helping you with essays to crafting your statement of purpose and to reviewing your resume and references to eliminate inconsistencies and present it better.

Expansion plan

Stoodnt.com currently has about 20 counsellors on board and plans to ramp up this number gradually as demand picks up.

Singh said the response from the student community has been gratifying and registrations are now in the region of 6,000-1,0000 on a monthly basis.

Singh notes that while registrations from metro areas such as Delhi/Gurugram, Mumbai, Pune, Bengaluru and Chennai are high, there is also increased demand from towns such as Jamshedpur, Bhilai, Bhopal or Anand where access to such counselling services may be limited.

Published on September 18, 2016

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