Testimonials

elizabeth_benedict-dan_lake-2011What Students Say

Liz is absolutely brilliant. Her suggestions really made my essays reach their full potential, flow more naturally, more logically, and become more powerful. Liz also helped me emphasize my strengths on my application and gave clear, insightful advice on the application process in general.
— V. P., Accepted to Harvard College and Yale College

I contacted Liz about three weeks before I sent off my first college application. A nervous senior, I was anxious to get my essays ready in such a short time. Liz replied very quickly and very promptly, and offered to help me improve my essays. From the very beginning, it was clear that she really cared about me as an individual and that she really wanted me to be as successful as possible in my college process. She was so responsive and insightful that is often felt like she had known me for years instead of weeks! After I sent her my first essay, she replied within a few hours with detailed corrections and suggestions. Each time, she would help me further develop my distinctive, creative voice while also illuminating my errors. Every time, I could learn from the suggestions, make my own changes, and send her back a newer version for more advice. It was absolute pleasure to work with her– she was both incredibly efficient and helpful. Now that I’ve been accepted to my dream school, I not only appreciate Liz as a great mentor, but also a great friend. Thank you so much!
— A. M. R., Early Action, Harvard University

“To future clients of Ms. Benedict, I was in your position a few months ago. I pride myself on being a powerful writer who never needed help in high school, but when college application season came around, I felt quite overwhelmed. The style of writing that is required for colleges is very personal and unlike anything else I had ever written before (i.e. literary analysis). Liz was very prompt in responding to my first request for information, and she worked with me to ensure that I felt comfortable with her legitimacy and reassured me that she would not be writing anything for me—she would simply teach me how to write personally and clearly. When working with Liz, she was funny, creative, and helpful. If you are considering hiring her, I can assure you it will be money well spent, and it will not be hiring someone to “do your work for you.” Liz is strict in not writing anything, but rather helping her students craft creative personal stories that sound pleasing and flow well. I am very thankful to her, as I have received acceptances from UCLA, USC-Marshall, NYU-Stern, and UC Berkeley!
— M.D., Southern California

It was an absolutely wonderful experience to work with Liz. Being a nervous international student desperately looking for help and advice to compose essays for a system I knew nothing about, I’m so glad that I found Liz. I was quite skeptical about this whole process at first, to work with someone from the States while I’m in Hong Kong. I never thought this whole thing could work over internet with her being 8000 miles away from me! But here we are. We worked the whole thing out through Skype and Google Docs. She was very helpful, inspiring, and patient, and she encouraged me to dig up stories within myself that I wouldn’t have considered as writing materials otherwise. She helped me to see a bigger picture of where my words were heading, while correcting minor but essential grammar mistakes. She also helped me organize my stories. Liz is an amazing tutor, and I’ll always be grateful for her guidance and understanding.
— S.P., Early Action and Merit, School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Before I met Liz, my family and I felt stressed out by the entire application process. The Common Application and countless other supplements were daunting obstacles that had me twisting into awful contortions. While I was initially hesitant to work with an essay editor because I wanted to make sure my work was my own, it turned out that I had nothing to fear. Liz provided me with a comfortable environment where I could reflect on my interests and personal experiences to draft compelling stories about myself. The essays I wrote were unmistakably my own, and over a series of low-stress meetings, she helped me to refine my writing until I had an application that I felt very proud of. The advice and lessons I’ve learned from Liz will undoubtedly help me whenever I’ll need to write applications or grants in the future. Thank you!
— S.M., Early Action, Yale College

Liz was one of the most helpful people in my application process, which, like most people’s, was hectic. She uses her familiarity with the schools and the process and her skill as a writer to improve your essays on every level. Whether you’re having trouble with the big picture, like picking an appropriate topic or deciding what ideas to include in your essay, or with the small details, such as style and grammar, Liz will help make your essays fantastic. She helped me on all these levels, and the results were quirky, personal, and successful essays that landed me a spot in my first choice school. Thank you, Liz!
— K. E., Accepted Early Decision to Columbia College/Columbia University

Dear Liz: I just wanted to let you know that I got into Tufts! I’m very excited and wanted to thank you for everything and all you did for me these past few months!
— E.S., Early Decision 2015-16, N. Jersey

I started my college applications (particularly the essays) very late. There was no real reason other than procrastination. My hopes for reaching the Ivy League soon became hopes for simply getting into college. However, with the little faith I had left, I browsed Google for useful college application resources/mentors, and I found Liz’s website; I remember reading the amazing testimonials for her services, and yelling to my mom, “Mom, we NEED to call this lady!” I was initially concerned she wouldn’t even have the time and availability to help me so late into the year, so upon hearing she would welcome me as her student, I was shocked. Over the next two months, she guided me throughout not just the essay-writing process, but my entire college application process, providing me invaluable information with her wide range of college-related experiences. From helping me transcribe my creative voice onto paper to helping me write my resum�, Liz taught me things that will last into college and beyond. Thank you so much, Liz. Writing this testimonial is an honor, and I hope mine will inspire others as your previous testimonials have inspired me.
— C.Z, Emory University & Cornell University

Liz was able to take some of my rough ideas for an essay and lead me to creating an amazing personal statement for my law school application…. A handwritten note on my acceptance letter commented on how powerful my essay was.
— S. H., NYU Law School

Hey Liz! I just wanted to let you know that I was accepted into Colgate early decision!!! I wanted to thank you for your help on my Common App essays and my supplements. Thank you so much for always replying so quickly, for helping me clarify important moments in the essays, and giving me ideas on how to cut down my essays when I was way over limit. I couldn’t have done it without your help.
— N. M., Colgate

I wanted to let you know that I am going to be attending the University of Virginia. I am so grateful for all of your help during my application process. I absolutely could not have done it without you and I am incredibly proud of the essays that you helped me to write. The lessons that I learned gave me a new confidence in my writing skills both in and out out of the classroom. I will be sure to pass your name and contact information on to my friends who are rising seniors.
— M. L., University of Virginia

I was stuck, and the essay was taking over my life. There was so much riding on it, and my friends had already finished theirs, which made me even more nervous…. You drew me out, but you didn’t put words into my mouth. You helped me to understand what it was that I wanted to say. Thanks to you, I’m proud of my final essay and confident in what I wrote.
— T. G., Smith College

What Parents Say

“I am not a gratuitous flatterer, but I am just gobsmacked by your talent.”
— A mother, New York, Barnard College, Early Decision, 2015

“I am so thrilled with how you and my son worked together. He and I are very close and I didn’t want to jeopardize that by trying to work with him on my own. I was enough of a nag with everything else we had to do. Thank you from the bottom of my heart!”
— Early decision, Northwestern University, L.K., Southern California, December 2015

Elizabeth Benedict helped our son with what seemed like the daunting task of writing and editing the Common App essay and several other supplemental essays. She was fantastic at helping him calmly figure out his topics and write in his own distinctive, creative and unique voice. She has an amazing way of relating to a 17-year-old that made our son feel confident in his own writer’s voice. She also helped review all the short answers on the Common App for the various colleges to make sure everything was clear and not redundant. This made the entire process feel very much under control and contributed to reducing the stress level for everyone. As parents, we were able to be much more in the bystander role, which seemed better for everyone. And we have even more confidence in Liz’s work and her judgment once he was accepted to Yale for early action!
— M. K., New York City

I cannot imagine having lived through the essay writing aspect of college applications without Elizabeth Benedict. Liz worked with my daughter during the summer between her junior and senior years. By getting an early start, Liz was able to encourage my daughter to revisit her essays multiple times. The end product was outstanding and really conveyed a sense of her individuality and strengths. Liz and my daughter worked from different states initially and finished up their work in a live session. Liz’s help was particularly critical in avoiding frustration and conflict, moving the process along and sparking my daughter’s imagination and creativity to produce multiple original and thoughtful essays. She was admitted to two of three of her early application schools, and I have no doubt that Liz’s coaching contributed to this success.
— K. O., Arizona

Liz is the calm in the midst of a storm. Her honesty, integrity and conciseness are the essence of her soul. She has the gift of gently and skillfully guiding the student without altering or influencing the thoughts of the young person she is shepherding. My daughter found her voice and matured academically through Liz�s guidance and was able to condense and express her thoughts so eloquently with the end result being that she was accepted to the college of her choice. As a mother, I will always be grateful to Liz, who came into our lives and magically and patiently transformed the overwhelming college essay into a positive and cheerful situation. Brava! Thank you!
—S. L. C., New York City – Vassar, May 2014

My daughter scored more than 2300 in her SATs. Besides the academic achievements, she also takes upon leadership roles at school and volunteers regularly. When her early applications were deferred, she was in total shock and decided to increase her applications to ensure a better shot at an esteemed college. Winter break was not a break for her at all. She devoted all her time to write the essays and research the colleges. As a parent, I felt powerless to help her in the process. I turned to online blogs trying to find some thoughts and experiences shared by other parents. I came across some articles by Ms. Elizabeth Benedict, who had a very calm and logical tone in her suggestions. It turns out that Ms. Benedict is not only an author, but an avid college essay consultant. She was quick to address my concerns and charges reasonably. Even when she traveled, she informed me of her schedule and availability. There are many consultants out there. If you need to talk to one, Ms. Benedict is the person to go to. My daughter was admitted to her dream school!
—From a grateful parent, Southern California, April 2014

Although we were initially hesitant to seek the help of a writer, we are now extremely happy that we did. Ms. Benedict was wonderful. She was very helpful and was able to communicate and help our daughter, who is very shy. The essay was our daughter’s work. Ms. Benedict was a pleasure to talk to and was always accessible. We were very pleased with her work and the responsible manner she handled everything.
—G. M. A., Northern New Jersey – Early decision University of Pennsylvania

Elizabeth Benedict has been a Godsend for our son and our family in the overwhelming process of applying to college. She provides focused, good-humored, and experienced support in both the essays and the application process. Elizabeth does not write your child’s college application essays. She draws them out of him or her with the same skill she exerts as a superior college writing professor. Our son’s experience of writing and re-writing and re-writing again his various essays under Elizabeth’s guidance was the equivalent of a mini-essay writing course with tangible results. Our senior and Elizabeth worked together via phone sessions, e mails, and two face-to-face weekends of college application “boot camp.” The end result: college essays that ring true and that our son owns and feels proud of. What could be better? It was worth every penny. UPDATE: Our son got into his first-choice school with a scholarship.
—D. N., Chevy Chase, Maryland

I just want you to know that my daughter made it through the college process with her mind and sense of humor intact. I would like to think your assistance played a major part… Thanks so much for all your help. She has decided to attend Smith College this fall. J.P. Bronx, NY

From Elizabeth’s undergraduate writing students at Princeton:

One of the most stimulating, helpful courses I have ever taken. Liz was extremely accessible, and also encouraging. Her comments were always insightful, and given in a positive way.

Benedict is an insightful teacher. She knows how to get us to improve our writing, and, most importantly, knows how to tell us how to make our writing better without making us feel badly about it.

Liz’s encouragement and sensitivity enabled me to explore and grow. I feet that I am a much better writer with the experience of her class, and having been exposed to her wisdom.

I’ve really learned a ton about myself and good writing. I feel better able to self-criticize and also more competent to be critical of others’ work.