About Vicki O'Day

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I've been coaching students and parents on college admissions and financial aid since 2006. I began this work in the public schools by helping a new school start up a college counseling program. In my current practice as an independent consultant, I work with students one-on-one and develop a personalized approach to the college process for each family.
Professional background: I have a certificate in college counseling from UCLA and have done additional coursework at UC Irvine. To keep up to date on college admissions and financial aid, I visit many college campuses and participate in professional conferences each year.

Admissions experience: I serve as a freshman application reader for UC Berkeley. I have also volunteered with several organizations that promote college access, including Foundation for a College Education, Sunday Friends, the Glow Founation, and Peninsula College Fund.

Expertise in college finances: I am knowledgeable and experienced in financial aid and merit aid. I work with families at all socioeconomic levels, from no-need to high-need, and I'm committed to helping all families find affordable college choices. I'm a strong believer in the value of learning about college finances early, and I give presentations on college affordability throughout the Bay Area.

Personal: I am the parent of a college graduate (and current grad student) who studied chemistry and rowed on the crew team at Williams College and a college senior who studies environmental policy and economics at Pomona College. I understand what it's like to go through the college process as a parent, and I welcome parents' questions and participation.

Professional memberships: National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), Western Association for College Admission Counseling (WACAC), Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA), and associate membership in the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA).

Education:I have a BA in math from Mills College, an MS in computer science from UC Berkeley, and an MA in cultural anthropology from UC Santa Cruz. In an earlier career, I did research in human-computer interaction in several Silicon Valley companies.

Feedback

"I always felt like Vicki cared about me and my success. Even after I began college (a college she was instrumental in helping me get into), I continued to keep in contact because I knew she would be able to help me."
"Vicki helped me with the entire scholarship process. She did her research, recommended that I apply to Gates, advised me on how to select a Recommender and Nominator, and patiently and meticulously worked with me through the revision process of over 8 essays for the Gates Millennium Scholarship application."