I dominated standardized tests throughout school. I was always the top of my class and was consistently in the top 1% in the country. School was easy for me and tests were a breeze.
WAIT! That’s not my story. Not even close. I struggled in school from the beginning. My primary grade teachers wanted to hold me back when I was young. However, my parents decided against it, so my mom decided to work with me A LOT. Even with all her help, I had to work to get Cs in grade school, which we all know is the equivalent of an F.
Fast forward to high school. I decided I was going to be valedictorian. This seemed ridiculous given the fact that I had never made the honor roll my entire life!
I earned straight As the first quarter of high school. I was excited and my parents were pleasantly surprised. As the years went on I continued to pay attention to the smarter kids in school and asked how they studied and prepared. I continued to work hard and kept getting As, but I always felt that I really was not that smart. I was just working really hard AND working the right way.
I did end up being a straight A student and class valedictorian. However, our family situation required that I needed to pay for my own college. This forced me to learn how to find scholarships…any scholarships.
My major was mathematics, so I decided to take extra classes to earn my teacher certification which allowed me to qualify for teaching scholarships. That’s how I ended up becoming a teacher.
I really did not want to be a teacher. I wanted to be an Olympic track & field coach, but back then high school coaches had to be teachers. While coaching I had athletes that needed higher ACT scores in order to be eligible for athletic scholarships. The first athlete I worked with improved from a 15 to a 20. Soon smaller groups were organized by parents, but I just wanted to coach. Finally, one summer afternoon after working with about 20 athletes a mother approached me and encouraged me to consider teaching ACT classes on a full time basis. She told me the following:
“Not very many high school students will want to go on and play sports in college (the focus of my athletic training), but there are A LOT of high school students that want to go to college and they need your help.”
God used her boldness to change my life. I now work with over 1,000 students personally each year in my live classes and hundreds more online.
While teaching ACT classes, parents and students would ask questions about college: how to get scholarships, where to start, how to find good schools, questions to ask a college, etc. I began incorporating small segments into my ACT classes to help point students in the right direction.
Again, God used a mom to send me down another path. A mom called to ask questions about all of the college segments I was including in my ACT classes. Our phone conversation ended up lasting over 90 minutes. It ended by her saying the following:
“Jason, this is great that you share this with your students, but parents really need this information, too. You really need to organize something for parents.”
This provoked me to develop parent seminars in order to share what I had learned. The parent seminars led to the book. Questions before, during, and after the seminars turned my idea of developing the book into a reality as the initial 101 page draft grew to a 250-plus page book.
Parents often came to the seminars without their students and then commented on post-evaluation forms that they wished they had brought their students. This led to us producing a seminar DVD, so families could watch the seminar together.
We want to help as many families as possible by sharing what we have learned from thousands of students and families over the years. There are numerous things that parents and students can do in order to save tens of thousands of dollars in college costs. Unfortunately, too many families miss out because they don’t know what they need to do. If you are reading this, then you have no excuses. You now know where to get the information you need.
May our services be a blessing to you and your loved ones.