Serving students in Berkeley, the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond
Great Choices College Advising was founded on the belief that, with the right guidance and support, college planning can be motivating, effective, and fun! Think of it as an adventure – one full of exploration, discovery, growth, and opportunity.
Imagine there is a river crossing ahead with a series of stepping stones. Some stones are close together and easy to navigate while others are further apart requiring agility, focus, and determination.
We approach the steps ahead using a series of questions that guide our students to a deeper understanding of themselves and the opportunities around and ahead of them. With calmness and clarity, we help young people discover who they are, what matters to them, and which stepping stones will take them where they want to go.
At Great Choices College Advising, College Consultant Lea Baechler-Brabo personally guides and advises students and families through each step of the college planning process.
Offering a guided journey to college that is personalized, organized, and informed.
Our goal is for students to feel confident and empowered. To achieve this, we start by establishing a clear understanding of the college planning, application, and admissions process and the series of steps ahead on the path to college and beyond.
Self-Discovery & Preparation: We spend valuable time early on getting to know each young person we work with and their unique interests and strengths. We advise students on how to pursue academic rigor in high school and seek opportunities beyond the classroom, discover why they want to go to college and clarify what type of college education and experience they are looking for.
Finding the Best Fit Colleges: The growing self-awareness helps students to narrow their search to a great list of colleges they can get to know and consider applying to. Together we work to find colleges and programs that are the right social, academic, and financial fit for each student, and that also offer the kinds of experiences each student seeks on and off campus. College affordability is an important concern for families and one that we face head-on by understanding college costs and financing options.
Strong Applications, Thoughtful Essays that Stand Out: In the final phase of applying to college, students are able to put their best foot forward by articulating what matters to them and why, while showcasing their strengths and achievements. Students are clear on why each school they apply to makes a great match and fit and are able to demonstrate this with confidence in the applications and essays.
We care about what our students and families care about and pay close attention to detail where it matters most.
When college acceptance offers come in, we are there to help students compare and evaluate the great choices available to them and prepare for the transition to college.
Take advantage of a complimentary consultation and we'll help you choose the plan and timing that is right for you.
A message from Lea
because guiding and supporting young people in their college and career planning is optimistic, meaningful and impactful work that can help turn a potentially terrifying process into an exciting and fulfilling one.
I’ve dedicated myself to working with students and families in educational settings my entire adult life. I am thrilled to offer my insight, experience, and expertise in ways that empower students and families with the information and guidance they need to successfully navigate the journey to college.
We are fortunate to live in a time when there are thousands of great institutions of higher learning in the U.S., and many more in our increasingly interconnected, global world. When young people lean in to self-reflection and self-discovery, they learn how to listen to their own inner compass and open themselves up to the possibilities.
The conversation changes from students asking “Where can I get in?” to “What schools make a good fit for me?”
When students are able to focus on what matters to them and approach their future with confidence, not fear, they find their path is full of great choices.
As a parent of two college graduates, and a third currently attending college, I’ve learned that it does all of us – students, parents, friends, families, teachers, coaches, counselors – a great deal of good to remember that there is value in taking this whole college thing one step at a time while building confidence and creating opportunities along the way.
Ready to take the first step? Let’s talk.
Today's high school students need both.
Each year, Lea visits dozens of college campuses in the United States and Europe and regularly attends professional conferences. Through research, campus tours, and professional networking, she stays up on all the latest developments in college admissions so you don't have to.
Start with a complimentary consultation.
Let's talk.Contact Lea
Lea uses this space to share insight and advice on the ever-changing landscape of college admissions and higher education.
Read what parents and students say about Lea's guidance and support.