Frequently Asked Questions

Scholar Program

Your student can enroll when he or she finishes sophomore year. Our Scholar program is for high school juniors and seniors. We begin to take new enrollments and re-enrollments in May of each year. Our sessions begin in July and end the following year in June.

There is an enrollment fee of $400.00 per student, per year, regardless of the time of enrollment. However, there is no cost for services throughout the year. Families with significant need are eligible for an enrollment fee waiver.

Session dates vary by month and are held on Sunday afternoons.

A PowerPoint of the session material, along with any additional handouts, will be posted to the password protected side of our website. Scholar families will be given a username and password for access.

Team members are available to meet before and after sessions. We offer one individual family meeting and our team is accessible by phone and email throughout the year. Communication is key. The more you share about your student with us the better we are able to assist your family.

Email is our preferred method of communication, as the team has varied schedules due to traveling for college visits, meetings with families, attending conferences or providing instruction time. Please allow 72 hours for a return call or email.

We have a license for Career Cruising, a password protected, web-based comprehensive career guidance resource.  Scholar students will have access to this user-friendly resource that provides key career needs: self-assessment, career exploration, and post-secondary education planning. Cynthia Wilson will gladly follow up by phone and assist students in the evaluation of his or her assessment and discuss the best way to maximize the site for career and college exploration.

There is not one right answer for every student. Each student is unique. Our team feels strongly that students should consider taking both the SAT and ACT, without prep, and then meet with Maureen Roadman to discuss a student’s next best steps.

No, but we are happy to provide contacts for those who do.

While we are not a recruiting service, Explore Solutions can provide information and resources about connecting athletics with admissions.

You will have access to Career Cruising, a great tool for exploring college possibilities. We can help students begin to define those “wants” and “must haves” in a college and then you can utilize that information to begin a college search with Career Cruising.

Explore Solutions gathers key information from families through conversations and documents that provide essential background information, giving us a profile of the student as a whole individual. We then collaborate as a team, reviewing a student’s goals, transcript, test scores, resume, family Expected Family Contribution (EFC), and any special circumstances.

Scholar sessions will address how to search for affordable colleges that fit a family’s financial profile. It is recommended that families provide their EFC (Expected Family Contribution) and a list of schools to Gail Durso for review and she will gladly respond with feedback and additional parallel schools that may make better sense financially for your family. You can determine your EFC by using the Big Futures EFC Calculator

No. The FAFSA is fairly straightforward and has an excellent help line: 1-800-433-3243. You can also have a “live chat” or email the experts. Follow this link for contact information: The Federal Student Aid Information Center.

We provide current information in our Scholar sessions, on-line newsletters and college application workshops in the summer.  Additional application support is handled online and via Skype/Facetime.

Yes, through Scholar sessions, workshops and online. We brainstorm topics with students and Cynthia Wilson will review essays upon request and provide feedback. Essay feedback is primarily online or Skype/Facetime. Scholar students can also participate in our summer Essay Workshop.

Yes. We are happy to help students work through the pros and cons of each school. Additionally, upon request, a family meeting with Gail Durso can be arranged to review and compare college financial packages.

We are active members of NACAC and WACAC, which are national and regional college admissions professional organizations, and we continue to develop relationships with college admissions deans and counselors. Our team attends professional conferences (including UC and CSU), participates in counselor college fly-ins and engages in daily research through professional blogs and industry related literature.

Scholar families receive a “Week at a Glance” email each Monday with reminders of upcoming events. Every two weeks a junior and a senior digital newsletter is sent with tips, reminders and special events, a college “Money Matters” column and articles on colleges and careers. Don’t forget to “Like” us on Facebook for additional timely articles and events.

Community Events

You can visit our website calendar and Facebook page where we promote our career Speaker Series.

Yes. You will be able to find out information about our College Showcases by visiting our website calendar and Facebook page.

No, but registration will be required. All information for registration will be included in any promotional information posted on the website calendar and Facebook.

All events are open to high school students and their parents/guardians. You are not required to be a Solutions Scholar to attend.

Check our calendar regularly for upcoming SAT/ACT test dates, non-Explore Solutions college information sessions and college fairs.You can also subscribe to our quarterly community newsletter.

Business Partnerships

Add to our professional “rolodex” by sharing your employee talent pool. You or any of your employees can participate in one of our career Speaker Series.
Contact Cynthia Wilson: cynthia@exploresolutions.org.

Sponsor a table at our annual Business and Youth (BAY) Expo. By sponsoring a table, your organization or business provides the professionals for the event and your dollars will support Explore Solutions future career education and college programs.
Contact Maureen Roadman: maureen@exploresolutions.org.

Notify Explore Solutions of any grants your organization may have that support career education. We are proud recipients of the SDG&E Inspiring Future Leaders grant the last three years.
Contact Maureen Roadman: maureen@exploresolutions.org.

We believe in “paying it forward” and giving back to the community. We do this through our one-hour Lunch and Learn program for your employees with high school students. Conducted at your workplace, this no-cost, short Lunch and Learn program provides practical advice to parents who are trying to find “right fit” schools for their student, family and budget. Your employees bring their lunch and we bring the information!