#108 – A Conversation About Education, Parenting, and Race

In this second crossover episode with a Facebook Live even hosted with cohost Elizabeth Hamblet, we were joined by Timothy L. Fields and Shereem Herndon-Brown, authors of The Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions now out in its second edition. Tim and Shereem shared how the book came to be, what’s new in the second edition, and touched on many topics including what makes a strong college essay, college choice and the college search process, the new non-affirmative action admissions world, and how and why parents can be drivers of the college admission process. You won’t want to miss this conversation.

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This was not only a wonderful conversation, but an important one as well. (And also a lot of fun!)

Timothy Fields and Shereem Herndon-Brown, authors of The Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions, shared so much information about such a wide range of topics, you’ll want to hear it all. Shereem (on the right in the photo) brings his experience as the founder and Chief Education Officer of Strategic Admissions Advice, working with college counseling curriculum and personalized college advice coaching and Timothy (on the left in the photo) brings his focus as Senior Associate Dean of Admissions at Emory University.

Elizabeth mentioned some additional resources in the episode:

Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be: An Antidote to College Admissions Mania by Frank Bruni

The Truth About College Admission: A Family Guide to Getting in and Staying Together by Rick Clark and Brenan Bernard

We also talked about –

Who Gets in and Why by Jeffrey Selingo

Shereem and Timothy have their own podcast where you can hear more about all of these topics. Not long ago, Elizabeth was a guest on their Application to Admission podcast. You may want to catch that conversation.

You can follow Timothy and Shereem at their website: understandingthechoices.com or on Facebook, Instagram or Linked In.

Don’t forget that you can listen to all of our previous podcast episodes here or subscribe wherever you listen to podcasts. You can also go to followthepodcast.com/collegeparentcentral to add our podcast (it’s free!) so that you’ll receive each new episode as we release it.

Let us know what you’d like to hear about on future podcasts! Leave a comment below or email us at podcast@collegeparentcentral.com.


Vicki Nelson: 0:00

Welcome to the College Parent Central podcast. My name is Vicki Nelson and I’m one of the co-hosts of this podcast. This is the second crossover episode that we’ve done with co-host Elizabeth Hamblet and it was released originally on her LD Advisory Facebook page as a live event, but we’re now able to release it as a podcast, just in case you missed that event. This episode features a wonderful conversation with Timothy Fields and Shereem Herndon-Brown, both authors of the Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions. There’s a ton of information here for every family, no matter what. So welcome to episode 108 of the College Parent Central podcast: Education, Parenting and Race.

Announcer: 1:08

Welcome to the College Parent Central Podcast. Whether your child is just beginning the college admission process or is already in college, this podcast is for you. You’ll find food for thought and information about college and about navigating that delicate balance of guidance, involvement and knowing when to get out of the way. Join your hosts as they share support and a celebration of the amazing experience of having a child in college.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 1:50

Welcome everybody. We are here on Facebook and also recording for the College Parent Central Podcast. For those of you who are watching us on Facebook, we have prepared questions for our guests today. If time allows, we will try to take your questions, but you can always ask these gentlemen your questions yourself and we will have them be sure to let you know how to get in touch with them.

Vicki Nelson: 2:13

And for those of you who are listening to the podcast on the College Parent Central Podcast welcome. This is the second of our crossover events with Elizabeth Hamblet’s LD Advisory Facebook page and we’re very excited because we have a lot to talk about today. So I’m going to let Elizabeth because we are not here alone I’m going to let Elizabeth introduce our guests for today.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 2:42

Well, I’m so excited about this episode. So I had the pleasure of meeting our guests today Tim Fields and Shereem Herndon-Brown at the NACAC conference in September, and I am now the proud owner of two different editions of the Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions, which is a wonderful read, and that is what we are here to talk about today. So I’m going to start by asking our guests to introduce themselves, tell you all a little bit about themselves, and I like to go in clockwise order because I’m very rigid in my thinking.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 3:17

So, in my view, I have Shereem here. So, Shereem, just introduce yourself, tell everybody who you are and what you’re all about.

Timothy Fields:

Elizabeth, Shereem would always go first.

Elizabeth Hamblet:

I had not realized there was a hierarchy.

Shereem Herndon Brown: 3:35

Okay happy day to all. Uh, I am Shereem Herndon Brown. I am, uh, the founder and chief education officer at Strategic Admissions Advice, which educational firm. I’m also the proud co-author of the Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions, a conversation about education, parenting and race. It’s an honor to be on your podcast. I have the opportunity to speak to your audience about a variety of college admissions-related stuff, so thank you again for having us.

Timothy Fields: 4:02

And I am Timothy Fields, senior Associate Dean of Undergraduate Admission at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, also had the great privilege of co-authoring this book with Shereen and, as you were on our podcast, Elizabeth, a couple of weeks ago, it is out in the world. If you have not heard it, please go and check it out on all our podcasts. We were excited to have that conversation with you, and so we’re excited to be here with you and Vicki to talk about our book and all things college admission today.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 4:34

Well, I’m really excited to be able to share this with everybody. So I have, you know, as I said, read both books cover to cover. I was just blown away by the first one. You know there’s so much important information in there and what we’ll get to today for folks who are just joining us that I think is really interesting is obviously it’s the Black Families Go to College Admissions. There’s a lot of very good specific information for Black families, but also for everybody. So Black families but also for everybody.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 5:05

So, but it’s been three. No, my gosh, it’s four years. I can count four years since the publication of your first book. And in reading this new one, I saw that there were three additional chapters that you added. So the chapter called Affirmative Action is Dead is pretty obviously explained by the Supreme Court decision. So not to give too much away, because we want everybody to read the book, but do you want to give folks who are listening and watching a sense of you know, the flavor of what they will learn in that chapter, because it’s so important chapter because it’s so important.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 5:42

Sure, and just for a little bit of clarity, Elizabeth, and again, you are now a understanding the choices historian, understanding the choices, the umbrella company that Tim and I have. We started the book in 2020. We published it in September 2022. And very, very, all good, all good, but you know, I think that’s a pretty important. Affirmative Action is Dead chapter is an extension of after we published the first book in 2022, September.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 6:08

Very quickly, less than a year later, the Supreme Court decision on affirmative action was going to be released and we knew that was pending. So we approached our publisher, Johns Hopkins University Press, about adding three chapters the first one about the affirmative action piece, which I’ll respond to in a second Essays. This is a big piece of the puzzle that we wanted to make sure that we went a little more in-depth about, given that there were a lot of questions about it, particularly as it relates to the Supreme Court decision, and we had heard on the road about mental health and how so many parents and educators were concerned about the mental health of students going through this process that Tim took the lead on an excellent chapter about mental health.

So again, thank you for referencing the fact that our book, albeit titled the Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions. Where there’s mental health, that applies to anyone. Applicable where there’s essays and artificial intelligence, that’s applicable to anyone. We have an expectation for time and success, that’s applicable to anyone. So we’re really glad that two-thirds of our book is for anyone who’s concerned about college admissions. 

But affirmative action in higher education. The reason why I’m going to respond to this and not Tim is because obviously Tim is the Senior Associate Dean of Admission at Emory. Emory is an institution that will abide by the Supreme Court decision to eliminate race-conscious admission. It’s complicated. I’m a child of affirmative action.

I went to Wesleyan University in Middletown, connecticut. I also went to Middlebury College for graduate school. I know you guys are New England folks so you know where those places are, but I am a product of affirmative action. I’m not sure I’d get into those schools without those institutions being committed to being welcoming, inviting places for families of color. All that said, with the Supreme Court eliminating that as per the decision last June, I’m disappointed and I need families to understand this Black and other hues that we are entering a new time in college admissions where race is no longer considered. So, no matter how you think of it good, not so good, or impartial. It’s changed. So we wanted to highlight that with the right provocative title and we’ve done that, but also let people know that things done changed in this landscape of college admission.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 8:13

Yeah, Tim, did you want to respond?

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 8:15

Yeah, and the only thing that I’ll add is that we also wanted to give a historical overview that a lot of times, people, you know, just take quick clips that they hear on CNN, Fox News, CBS, NBC, wherever you may, you know, digest your information, and we wanted to, you know, say how did we arrive at this place. So we kind of go through the cases that led up to the decision to provide some context, and I think that’s one of the larger things that we wanted to do in our book is provide some context for, you know, a lot of the topics that we discover that we, you know, talk about and dive into, and so that was one of how we wanted to begin the second book, given its importance and how its front and mind for so many.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 8:56

So I know, Shereem, you said that you had the essay. I think, if I understood you correctly, sort of had the essay chapter in mind when you wrote the first edition. Did I misunderstand?

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 9:08

No, no, no. We highlighted, we touch on it in the first edition. It’s part of our book, it’s a book number three parts Context. Tim just explained that in terms of you know a variety of things that kind of go into that X factors, which is really an admissions-led process. Tim gives an overview of how college admissions is done and some of the X-Factors that are involved. That I gave, I took the lead on the process and what needs to happen at what juncture in order.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 9:31

So, all that said, essays are, dare I say, my specialty. I have a Master’s, a Bachelor’s, in English and I have a Master’s in English from Middlebury’s Breadloaf School of English. So I love the essay component, I love the brainstorming. So we definitely talked about in the first edition. But, given the Supreme Court decision, given that we’re getting so many questions about it on the road, I wanted to bulk it up a little bit, enrich it, but then introduce artificial intelligence, right. So November 2023, AI, chat GPT, you know, becomes part of our lexicon and we need to talk about how that is now related to college admissions essays. So, knowing that there is now more to tell and people are asking for it, we added an additional chapter that really focuses on the power of writing is, I think, the official title about college essays.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 10:19

Tim, did you want to add to that? So I mean, I got the impression too that it maybe felt even more imperative to talk about the essay given, so could you also explain a little bit about understanding that now colleges in some places will not consider race, how students can work with that essay? I am seeing a lot of posts about ways for students to talk in their essays about their experiences, so is there anything that you would want to share, Tim?

Timothy Fields: 10:55

Yeah, so I think you know, been at Emory for almost 20 years and you know, one of the things you know really like, to, you know, highlight is, you know students have, you know, talked about all kinds of things in essays.

Timothy Fields: 11:08

They talked about their identity, they talked about their childhood, they talked about, you know, their exploits in band and in sports, and you know students talk about a lot of things. And so I think you know we’ve always wanted students, especially at the more selective schools, to you know, really like tell your story. How are you going to differentiate yourself from other people? And so, with this decision, it really just opened up the door to really, you know, really have to double down on that, and that you know you don’t, you know, want, you want to talk about your lived experience, whatever that is. You know we’re not saying that students need to talk about their race, their identity, that they don’t want to talk about it. However, it is part of their lived experience and if that’s something that’s important to you, I think it’s something that we wanted students to talk about.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 11:58

Shereem, I think it was. I have a quote. I think you said this specifically. Maybe you wrote it together, but I loved this. You’re writing a short story that documents the slice of your life. You are its protagonist and you’re going to shine by drawing the reader with imagery and details. Now, as a fellow English major . . .

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 12:19

that was good, that was good. I’m going to take full credit for that. Nobody write that together. That’s all me, that’s all me

Elizabeth Hamblet: 12:23

Written like somebody with a master’s from Breadloaf.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 12:28

I do what I do, Elizabeth. I do what I do. I love it, but I will say that, no, I do think that too often we put so much emphasis on this personal statement essay. That again, it is critical. Trust, sure, but as per the common application, it’s 650 words and it’s not supposed to be an autobiography from birth or elementary school until you’re a senior in high school. So, all that said, a slice of your life. You get to be the protagonist, meaning they want to learn about you. I know about Luke Skywalker. I know about Indiana Jones. Those are the protagonists of those movies, of those stories. I know about Harry Potter. This is your story.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 13:06

This is not a book report. And if it’s your book, give me a slice. Not ages three, seven, 12, but I want to hear between 15 and 17, 14 maybe, how you’ve evolved. I love the book by Michelle Obama, Becoming. It doesn’t say you became, it’s about evolution. How are you growing? What are you learning? So a slice of that. It’s not going to be all the lessons learned. It needs to be something that’s unique to you, and Tim likes it when I say this, so I’ll make sure I drop it. It’s like a snowflake. We’re all different. There’s no two snowflakes alike. So give me that drop that you think, that one flake that you think could be unique about you, and expound upon it in a way that a college can learn more about you in ways that they can’t from your numbers or recommendations.

Timothy Fields: 13:51

And Shereem, if you don’t mind, I know you know we often, you know, talk about that. This isn’t new, you know. So this idea that a lot of people feel like all of a sudden, oh, I have to talk about race, ethnicity, and it hasn’t happened before. So I know you have a couple of great examples that you give of how students have been doing this for years.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 14:10


So primarily most of my clients in our company that we get strategic admissions advice are from affluent New England mid-Atlantic independent schools, boarding schools, suburban schools and trust me, those kids at those schools are finding what makes them unique and you know what Tim was referring to is that there have been students plural who’ve written about their cultures, their lived experiences of going into a synagogue and you know feeling a certain way or you know being intellectually challenged about why they’re sitting in a separate part, as a young woman, from her brothers and father during the high holidays.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 14:46

And another story comes to mind is an Indian family who, again, without saying I am an Indian family from Southeast Asia. It’s more about culturally, there are generations in this home. I get to learn the traditions of my ancestors because my grandmother lives with us and make sure she pours into us. So all that said, that’s a lived experience, that’s cultural, that’s racial, that’s religious, whatever you want to call it. It allows them to be different. So we’re not saying students right out being black, black, black. We’re saying right about your life, life, life.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 15:27

And Tim, I mean you guys have been at Emory through an admission cycle since the Supreme Court decision. Have you seen some students do this very effectively.?

Timothy Fields: 15:32

I mean, honestly, the essays haven’t changed, you know. You know essentially, you know, if I have to reflect upon other years, students are, you know, writing about the same things that they want to write about. But you know, I would say that you know, students too often write about the same things. They want to regurgitate their activities, you know so.

I play a sport, so I want to write about the sport, you know. I, you know, have a job, so I want to write about what I learned under these jobs, and these are excellent topics to write about if that’s what you’re comfortable in writing. But you know, I think, what happens in these hyper selective schools that have admit rates below 15, 10 percent,  You have to find a way to differentiate yourself. I often say, if you are applying to a place like Emory, Ivy League, Standord, more than likely you’re not going to be the best at anything, given the selectivity of that pool, but you can be the best at being you, so present, who you are, and that’s going to make you stand out in this process.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 16:39

That sounds so cruel when you say it. You’re not the best at anything.

Timothy Fields:

It’s just the truth.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 16:46

He follows up with you’re the best at being you, and that’s undeniable, right?

Shereem Herndon-Brown:

at those selective institutions.

Timothy Fields: 16:54

Well, I mean I’ll ask you this of all your, of all the clients you’ve worked with through the years, were any of them that you think were the best? As if they applied to a selective school that you said you this is the best person at this if they apply to this type of school?

Shereem Herndon-Brown:

No, I think the word you use is pointy.

I’ve worked with kids who’ve been, I think, the best at whatever they’re pointy at, which, again, which makes them uniquely you. So touche, you win. Carry on.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 17:22

This is part of the experience of talking with these guys.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 17:25

Yes, welcome, Vicki. Welcome to the Stokers, Vicki Welcome.

Vicki Nelson: 17:29

Hi, I want to pivot a little bit. I mean, I have to say I’m an English major as well and so I could listen to the conversation about essays and writing essays all day long and that’s great. But I but but it’s related because you’re talking about you know you are the best at being you and, and what I wanted to ask a little bit about you in in your book you encourage that the college process has to start early, you know, even in the choice of elementary school for some families and those things. And you have to be thinking about that. And I’m curious if you have thoughts about how you find that balance between being on that right path and building toward that process all along, but not having it become the student’s life. If they’re going to work at being who they are, how does it not all become about preparing for college and I’m doing this to get in, I’m doing that to get in. How do you find that balance?

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 18:52

So I’ll start and,  and then Tim, please clean this up if need be. It’s more about closing the information gap. So we’re not encouraging families to, at eight years old, have a set of colleges to consider and then direct your kids’ activities towards that. I do think it’s important that we all level the playing field of having the same kinds of information and, dare I say, access to information that can then help families to make decisions about their elementary school kids then go to this middle school could be neighborhood or not, and understand that the resources of that neighbor is gonna expose them to a variety of colleges given by the parent body, given what the school’s committed to. It’s all about exposure and information.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 19:32

So, yeah, I understand when we say start early having the conversation about what does your educational life look like? Parent, because the kid can’t make that decision, what is the ideal that you’d like them to get? Like parent, because the kid can’t make that decision, what is the ideal that you’d like them to get? And it’s not about a sweatshirt at the end of the rainbow, you know, as a freshman at cause, but what kind of learning do you want them to have so that they have opportunities plural at a variety of options as they get older. Tim?

Timothy Fields:

And I think that the main point that we wanted to do is that you know if you have aspirations to go to certain types of schools, you can’t just pop up junior year and say this is where I want to go. More than likely, more than likely, the course sequencing to take the courses you need to get into those type of schools

Shereem Herndon-Brown:

To be competitive, to be competitive.

Timothy Fields:

To be competitive, to be considered The foundation of that probably happened in seventh, eighth and ninth grade, and so too often you know what our book was born out of were friends calling us when their children were in the second semester junior year, first semester, senior year, say hey, my son or daughter is thinking about applying to school, we need some help. And so my response is well, if you’re trying to apply to Duke, all I can say is get the application in on time and proof read, because what really needed to happen in order to be competitive, the train is gone, and so we just wanted people to know that if you are looking as you go about this process, it just can’t start when the formal application process begins. When you start to fill out the application, the foundation is set long before that.

And, to Shereem’s point, we just wanted to provide information and exposure to the process, and when he said, narrow the information gap, I think one of the driving forces in, you know, our writing was that only a third, 33 percent of black students receive information about the college going process within their household, versus over 66 percent of white families who receive information. And so how families are receiving information, how they’re beginning this process, what information they’re having to navigate this process is different, and so we just wanted to provide a resource to help navigate those conversations. And honestly you know we wanted to you know, push the button a little bit, like we have to begin this process a little bit earlier.

Vicki Nelson: 22:01

So I’d like to follow that up a little bit. But I’m going to take you a little off guard maybe, because this isn’t something we asked you to think about ahead of time.

Timothy Fields: 22:13

Okay, Vicki, Going off, script going off script.

Vicki Nelson: 22:17

I just sat back and let you all talk about the essay now.

Elizabeth Hamblet:

She couldn’t help herself

Vicki Nelson:

Because I did have another question, but I think you’ve really addressed that question. But this is related. Right at the outset of your book. It’s right there on the first page of the preface of your book that you talk about redefining success and you say you know this is our mantra redefine success in the college admissions process. And I think that’s really what you’re talking about. In a way, when you’re talking about starting early and having those family conversations and building towards something, can you just talk a little bit about what you mean by redefine success? And you encourage parents to help their child do that. So how do you know we’re talking to parents? How can they do that?

Timothy Fields: 23:17

Yeah, thank you for asking, and you know. You know, similar to our podcast, there’s all kind of freestyling going on.

Timothy Fields: 23:22

Like we draw it up and then you know, all of a sudden the question bubbles up. So, absolutely Thank you for that. I think, when redefining success, I think you know too often there is this belief that there is a certain type of school that my child can be successful at, that they need to go to a certain type of high school in order to be competitive, that there’s a certain type of job that is waiting at the end of my child’s career that would define them to be successful. However, when we step back from these assumptions and look at the world as it is, there are a lot of people who are very, very successful who did not attend Ivy League institutions. There are a lot of people who go on to be successful who went to public schools. There are people who do not work at Fortune 500 companies, who are entrepreneurs, like Shereem, who are doing great things, and so what we wanted families to say is think about is like you define success on your terms in your home. That might just be your first generation college student just going to college, local state college, university that is success. That is a big deal, and so we wanted to you know, kind of, you know really you know Hone in on that. Also, you know we highlight historically Black colleges and universities.

Timothy Fields: 24:42

I’m a graduate of Morehouse and too often there’s this belief that, historically, black college universities are less than their predominantly white institutions. However, you have Vice President Kamala Harris, who is the first woman of color, black Southeast Asian lady, who is the Vice President of the United States who went to Howard University. You have Oprah Winfrey, who’s one of the richest people in the world who went to Tennessee State. And then we often, as we go around the country, ask parents and counselors do an exercise. Look at the last 10 people that you called in your phone and if they went to college, more than likely you would deem those people be successful. And so we want people to remove this idea that I need to go to Harvard, Princeton, Yale, Howard, Spelman, Morehouse in order to be successful.

Timothy Fields: 25:33

4,000 colleges and universities in the country, 2,000 offer bachelor’s degrees. We just cannot have a hyper focus on 75 of them to say that if my child does not go to these institutions, that they’re going to be successful. And so that is what we’re really trying to get families to rethink and then also define success based upon the walls of your home. You know I go off on a tangent. You know in the book about misinformation, which is one of my big pet peeves, that everybody listened to what everybody else is doing.

Timothy Fields: 26:03

And they’re determining success based upon what they see other people are doing when, honestly, that is not the path towards success in our eyes.

Vicki Nelson: 26:14

Well, can I follow up? And then I promise I’ll let you go back to where you started, because. I just want to follow that up with one. Do you have any suggestions on how parents can fight the messaging that students are getting? That’s contrary to what you’re saying, that you have to go to these certain places. This is the goal.

Shereem Herndon Brown: 26:42

And I think we’re doing that. You know we are. The message is we are using this book, using talking to you. You know our speaking tour to we’re from a megaphone to say, please, things have changed, you don’t have to do this anymore. Open your lens. So we’re trying.

Shereem Herndon Brown: 27:01

So the suggestion we have is for parents to listen to this conversation that we’re having. But again, I think Tim’s example of if every parent looked into their phone to see of the last 10 people they spoke to, where they went to college and do they do them successful, I bet they’re willing to.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 27:15

We also, in our book, at least for black college graduates, list out famous, successful whatever you want to call it Black Americans and where they went to college. Again, he mentioned Oprah Winfrey going to Tennessee State. We as adults need to help our kids Again. So their kids are getting messaging from New York Times whether they’re reading or not. They’re seeing the headlines Dartmouth, Yale, bless, those institutions but they’re not talking about Alberta’s Magnus and Fairfield and maybe that’s in that state. That’s where they need to be going. So, all that said, we want to use platforms like yours for people just to have conversations about changing their lens. Having a college list, that is, I guess, something that is really just deemable, if that’s even a word, given the changing higher education landscape, but also understanding that there’s a lot, of, plenty of people. Plenty of people didn’t go to X, Y and Z school. So using social media for good, hopefully.

Vicki Nelson: 28:13

Such an important message. Thank you.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 28:16

But if you have suggestions, Vicki, can you know? Uh, weave that into telepathically. Tell parents that, let us know we’re all in.

Timothy Fields 28:24

I mean, I mean recently. We, even you know, uh, we were at south by southwest a couple weeks ago and you know we, you know, talking about the few names that I mentioned but we also asked everybody raise your hand, do you have an iphone? And you know, 90 of the people raise their hand. We’re like Tim Cook went, went to Auburn, and Auburn is known for football. So there are people who

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 28:42

Steve Jobs went to Reed.

Timothy Fields: 28:46

So we want people to really open up their mind beyond and say what is really happening, and not just paying attention to the narrative that often is taking place. That really isn’t a really good depiction of the reality that’s happening.

Vicki Nelson: 29:03

So we’ll all just try to be on the same message.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 29:07

And I think you know it’s probably gosh, 10 years old already, but Frank Bruni’s

Where You Go Is Not Who You’ll Be. is a great book for you know, demonstrating exactly what Tim is talking about. You know it’s so much of going to college is about what you do when you’re there, and I was just listening to, or watching listening to, Lisa Damore on Rick and Brennan’s podcast talking about, you know, when she was teaching at University of Michigan and like 200 people were on a waiting list to work in the psych lab or something, and then she was working at a smaller school in Ohio and these students were getting great access to the lab because it was a smaller place and you know. So it’s not just about where you go, but what you do while you’re there. But I was thinking, gentlemen.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 30:01

So just a reminder for those who are listening or just joining us on Facebook we are here with Shereem Herndon-Brown and Tim Fields, who are the authors of the Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions. Thank you, yep, wait, I got mine. Let’s do this again. Sorry for those who are listening, but

Shereem Herndon-Brown:

look at you All right here we go.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 30:22

We need it, we need a screenshot of that. So, um, we’re all holding up our books. Back to you know the choices that cause, right, yours is understanding the choices. Um, you, you guys both went to different kinds of institutions. Shereem went to a predominantly white institution of PWI, as we call it now, and Timothy sorry, you went to Morehouse?

Timothy Fields:

Yes, Morehouse.

Elizabeth Hamblet:

And so, for families who want their kids to consider these options,

but maybe don’t have their own experience at either kind of school. Are there any starting points that you suggest that they use for you know, trying to talk to their kids about what each kind of environment could offer them?

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 31:03

Yeah, I’ll start with that. I think it’s important that all families have conversations early. When I say early, Tim makes a great point about you know information coming into certain families at certain times, certain households. But as a terms of the dynamics of HBCUs and PWIs or predominantly white institutions, it’s more about having an open mind, like we’re going to start there, but understanding that whatever worked for you 20, 30 years ago is going to be different for your kid.

Shereem Herndon Brown: 31:39

So you know Tim tells a great story of you know there are three camps of you know black families. There are the families that say you know we’re going to consider you know historically black college and universities as well as predominantly white institutions. There are families saying that we believe that predominantly white institutions are you know better because they have more, better reflection of the world. It’s a diverse world. It’s not all black. So you should go to a PWI and there’s families who went to historically black college and university and be like this was an amazing experience. This is my family legacy there. This is where I’m going, that’s where my money’s going, that’s where my kid’s going. End of discussion. So the two last two are the ones who are actually the loudest, where overwhelmingly most families consider both. What does your kid need and why? Tim tells another good story. Tim, I’m giving you a lot of credit today. This isn’t being recorded, is it? He talks about the why.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 32:28

Nope, no recording, no worries,

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 32:32

Ah, good. But it’s about the why. Why do you want this school for your kid? Why do you think this is best? Why, why? Why. It could be because I want them to work at JP Morgan one day, or I want them to be an educator. But whatever it is, you’ve got to know your why. Ultimately, we are firm believers that there’s something for everyone. There’s 4,000 college universities out there. 2,000 of them offer bachelor’s degrees.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 32:57

Let’s not get caught up into name brand recognition. I’ll be at Wesleyan, Middlebury, Morehouse. We’re no slouches here and people have called us to the carpet on that. That sounds comes from a very privileged standpoint. I don’t say privilege, I say fortunate. I was fortunate. I’m a first generation college student. I was fortunate to go to an independent school, Westtown School. I was fortunate to go to Brooklyn Friends. I was fortunate to go to Wesleyan was fortunate to go to Middlebury. But all those things happen because my parents had a plan or I fell into place with DEI. But all that said, I hope that families will think about what’s important for their child at this juncture in their life and not be singularly minded on what they believe it used to be. That may have been repetitive, but I hope I got to a point.

Timothy Fields: 33:44

Yeah, you know, I just like trying to give a crystal example and you know part of. I think one of the great things about Shereem and I working together is we’re living this, we are parents.

So we’re just not, you know, talking about, oh, we worked in higher education, no, like we are living this, and so, you know, my wife went to the University of Miami, so her college experience is different than mine and she enjoyed her college experience. But one of the things that she constantly calls me to the carpet is yes, you went to Morehouse and I’m sure you would love our 11 year old son to go to Morehouse, but does he want to go to college with all males? Does he want to go to college 15 minutes away from where he was raised, whereas you left Texas to go to college? You know, maybe he wants to have the experience similar to I had as far as being at a D1 school that has, you know, you know rah-rah sports. That, you know, is something that can be part of his experience.

Timothy Fields: 34:37

Like you know what are his needs, and so what you know can happen is I let my ego say I want my son to go to Morehouse because I went to Morehouse but that not fit his needs, drive this process, and so I think it’s really important for parents to step back. And you know, you know we talked with a college psychiatrist, Dr. Bianca Bush, and she says most decision is going to be a compromise. The parents aren’t going to get everything they want, the student is not going to get everything they want. You’re going to meet someplace in the middle, and so it’s just important to have conversations about the needs, and then you know, Shereem, the important four pillars that have to be discussed.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 35:18

Cost. Number one we don’t want people going broke. Money matters in America. We’re a capitalistic society and we do not believe that going into excessive amounts of debt students and parents needs to be how you navigate this process. Debt is not loan is not a bad word, but parent plus loans, plus, plus, plus, plus plus is compounding interest, and we don’t think that families need to just say just go to college and you can make this back. It doesn’t quite work this way. So you need to make sure always consider cost as number one. Number two location. I do think it’s important that families consider location. Where is this kid going to have access to whatever they need, whether it’s farmland, because they’re into agriculture?

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 35:57

or it’s into a major metropolitan area because they’re going to have access to possibly finance internships if that’s what their aspirations are. Or I work with a student who wants to be a curator at a museum, so she wants to come to Washington D.C and have opportunities to intern at all the Smithsonians down here. Um, so cost location, possible major. I do believe, uh, in a client of college with intentionality. I think that too often again, and I went to Wesleyan I guess a liberal arts institution. But I think that we have to help our kids to identify their strengths and interests and think about the majors as they’re going in, understanding that they may change.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 36:29

But I could have told you when I was 15 years old I wasn’t going to be a chem major. I could have told you you know what I mean. Like that’s not my thing. So if we look at our kids, no matter what we want them to be I’m a parent of a 28-year-old and a 19-year-old I’ve had to look at them and be like that’s not what I was thinking of, but I still love you.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 36:47

But the bottom line is we need to help our kids to apply to college with intentionality. So that’s possible major. So cost location possible major and then possible career. Again, we don’t know what career is going to be available in five, 10 years, but we do want to be thinking about it Again. I’m a big believer if we just kind of throw caution to the wind and throw snowballs on the walls to see what sticks you’re going to just get what life gives you. I would rather we make an attempt for something, have ambitions and aspirations and then pivot when necessary. But let’s not go into this blindly thinking that going to college is the holy grail for being successful in America.

Vicki Nelson: 37:25

I’m really grateful to hear you both talk so much about communication and talking to your student and figuring that out. That really answers what was in my mind, which was what is you know what, if parents have differing opinions of what they think their child should do, and you really hone in on well, it’s knowing your kid and knowing what they want to do. So we talk about communication a lot, so that’s really important.

Shereem Herndon-Brown 38:04

Yeah, and it’s important again, and Tim said, we’re living this right. Like I said, I have a 19 year old son, my only son. I have three daughters, one son. I love my kid to the ends of the earth, but I’ve learned that when he and I don’t communicate effectively, somebody is going to get very, very angry. I’m not going to let you know who that is.

Shereem Herndon-Brown 38:29

So, in order to navigate this process more efficiently, even the college counselor guy who’s got it all figured out for everybody else has to understand that my kid is who he is and I am helping him figure a lot of things out. I did. My older daughter had to help her figure out a lot of things. That were challenging at times, but I’m proud of both of them. I’m proud of the work that Tim and I are doing. I’m proud that, Vicki, you co-sign on what we’re saying, that if we don’t communicate, if you parents who are listening, don’t communicate with your kids about what you think they’re good at, what they think they’re good at, you’re just going to pull each other apart. Let’s work to this and I love. Thank you, Elizabeth, for mentioning Brendan and Rick’s book the Truth About College Admissions for Families. Brendan and I go back 30 years. He and I went to high school together. Rick and Tim obviously work in Atlanta together. They are, you know, our co. We call them our label mates for Johns Hopkins University Press.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 39:17

So if you don’t have their book, you know, Rick Clark, Brennan Barnard please cop it, but we are big believers as a, as a foursome.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 39:50

But you know that we have to have communication in our families to discuss this process, because it’s so expensive, because it is important, and because we now have the resources to do it.

Timothy Fields:

And we would be remiss if we did not mention how important it is to communicate as a family throughout this process, because Shererm and I as we’re, you know, traveling and you know, you know, talking with different families there are a lot of families who are assuming the process has not changed.

Timothy Fields: 40:03

The process has not changed and they’re, you know, following this playbook of oh, my child has this SAT score, this GPA, they’re automatically going to get it to these highly selective schools and they’re feeling a lot of pain because, you know, they assumed, oh, and then all of a sudden they’re getting blanketed and they don’t have the options that they wanted, just because they did not realize that this process has changed so much. And then the parents are leading it based upon the idea I want to, at graduation, say we have this sweatshirt to this, where my child is going to go, and that’s not happening. And so we just really need families to keep an open mind in this process and understand how much has changed the place that you were admitted to 25, 30 years ago. More than likely, your child may not have a chance of getting there for any number of reasons.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 40:48

That was so discouraging. Tim, Mr Doom and Gloom today Sounds like an admissions officer from a selective institution. That’s just him kind of putting out there.

Timothy Fields: 40:58

You got a couple of stories to tell. Go ahead and tell a couple of stories if you want.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 41:02

I mean I myself and Lisa Dimour just said this in Rick and Brennan’s podcast. A lot of people our age are, you know, start these conversations by saying I went to such and such but I couldn’t get back in. You know, I couldn’t do it now. and what I think is important too, one of the things that I really liked about this book and this is where, again, this is the Black Families Guide to Admissions, but there’s so much good information here for all students.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 41:27

You guys talk about transfer because, you know, I think one of the things that makes this decision so hard is the feeling young people have like this is the decision I make. That sets my life on course. Right, and it’s all on me. I’ve got to figure out the right place for me. That’s going to get my life going and I’m going to be able to do X, Y and Z for the rest of my life, because I went to, you know, abc place and so you know it’s. You can’t know what it’s like until you get there, right. You can’t really know what the experience is until you’re and in many cases, you’re living there, you’re interacting with people, and so I really appreciated the statement life is not linear, because never truer words were spoken.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 42:19

I’ll let you think about who wrote that. You decide who wrote that.

Timothy Fields: 42:21

Like I said, you got some stories. Go ahead and tell Story time Share your story time.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 42:28

It’s not story time. This is not our podcast, sir.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 42:31

It is your podcast. You’re the guest.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 42:32

We are the guest, we are the humble guest.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 42:35

It’s a big deal to us because, again, life is not linear. That again, life is not linear. That’s easy. But again we ask people all the time where did Barack Obama start college? Oh, my God, Harvard, Columbia. And I’m like not so much Occidental, right. So even the former President of the United States went from Occidental to Columbia, then obviously went to Harvard Law. All that said, it’s important that where you start doesn’t mean when you finish. It’s not a bad thing.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 42:58

I don’t meet, meet my wife. If so, I went to college Wesleyan University with a gentleman who ends up transferring to Howard. He and I were there for his first freshman sophomore year. He transfers to Howard. I go visit him. I meet my wife 25 years later. Ta-da, like that’s a big deal to me. That’s a transfer process winning.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 43:17

One of my best friends is a president of a big company out there in terms of media. He went to UPenn first two years of college and then transferred to Wesleyan. So again people say, oh my God, how could you leave an Ivy League school? He’s like I wasn’t happy. I wanted to go to Wesleyan. My parents made me go to Penn. When I got in I wanted to go to Wesleyan. Once upon a time he went to Wesleyan and has done very, very well for himself.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 43:40

All that said, we are believers. We have learned experiences. We have examples of the transfer process being a great opportunity for people to kind of get their feet wet into college, whether that may mean community college. Again, let’s go back to cost Transferring to a major four-year university and then getting a degree. Most people don’t kind of say I started here and finished there. No, Aaron Rodgers is, you know, quarterback and uh of the New York Jets. I’m a Jets fan, so I had to interject it. He went to a community college first and then went to university, Cal Berkeley, you know. Cam Newton went to transfer college before going to Auburn, I’m assuming, community college.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 44:14

So, uh, it is just part of growing up, the tender years of 18 to 22,. A lot happens family growth, independence, blah, blah, blah. So we don’t want to anyone. We don’t want students to think that where you go from 17 to 18 is going to define you. But we also want you to understand that. Give yourself time to grow and learn and figure some things out, hopefully with the support of your parents, like Vicki said. Communication that we all need to take our egos out of that. Tim, you want to talk about parents and their egos in this process?

Timothy Fields:

I have, I’ll tell you.

Shereem Herndon-Brown:

You said enough? You said enough? Yeah, I want to make sure you say what you need to say.

Timothy Fields: 44:55

No, absolutely, absolutely. I really want you to talk about the story about transferring, but you know we’ll say that for another day.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 45:01

We will Thank you.

Vicki Nelson: 45:12

Okay. So since we’re saving that for another day, I want to think a little more about parents, and you talk in your book about parents need to be the driver of this process process and especially you know if you’re starting the conversations and the thinking and the information gathering early parents need to be drivers and I remember I have three daughters. I remember trying to teach my kids how to drive literally drive the car and it was terrifying and I remember the most terrifying moment was that moment when they got behind the wheel and I had to go around the car and get in the passenger seat and they were in charge. So my question is, in talking about parents as drivers in the process, when in the process, or is it true in the process that parents need to turn the wheel over to students to be the drivers?

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 46:10

I’ll say this. So the driver process actually comes from Jeff Salingo’s book who Gets In and Why. So I’m going to give Jeff all the credit for that. He’s been a great friend of ours and I think it’s a unique metaphor for understand how this college process in 2020, whatever needs to work, particularly selective college admissions.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 46:27

It’s your money, parents. Let’s be clear cost. So if you’re not driving, you think that you’re just going to turn over you know 75 grand a year to your kid and say you make the decision based on where you want to go because I have this money to give to you, then you’re better than I am. So I want families to be driving. Because I said, cost should be the lead conversation in terms of the search process. I also think that it depends on your kid.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 46:52

Can your kid drive at this time? If your kid’s not ready, just because they’re 16, they should get a license. That doesn’t mean I’m giving you the keys to my car to go out at night Just because you’re 18,. That doesn’t mean I’m giving you the keys to my car to go out at night. You know what I mean. Like just because you’re 18, that doesn’t mean you get to make adult decisions about where you go. We need to communicate.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 47:06

So I think parents driving and maybe we should change it to you know we split the time driving you drive for 70, I drive for. You know 70%, you drive for 30%. But parents need to understand that, knowing their kid, using their worldly experiences, having access to information, kids are only going to digest what they want to digest about the college process, from social media, from friends, from what they hear. We need to be the discerning adults here and help them to start the car, drive it down the road and at some point, as we get more comfortable, with them becoming more comfortable, we can turn the keys over to them for a portion of it. But I think if we take our hands off the steering wheel, we have kids going to the wrong places for the wrong reasons.

Vicki Nelson: 47:50


Timothy Fields: 47:52

Was that enough? I’m sorry, that was enough. Yeah, it was.

Vicki Nelson: 47:55

It was. I mean, it’s a scary transition.

Timothy Fields: 47:58

It is, it is.

Vicki Nelson: 48:00

And we don’t. You know they don’t get that learner’s permit and we hand them the keys, right, they get the learner’s permit and we’re I mean, I may move around to the passenger side, but I’m still there. And you know, my kids are a lot older now and I’m still backseat driving sometimes.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 48:18


Vicki Nelson: 48:21

And white-knuckling it sometimes. So I think the reality is that driver and passenger thing can be uncomfortable at times in both ways and if we know that and anticipate that, that’s going to help a lot

Shereem Herndon-Brown:

Well said, well said.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 48:40

I’d like to take an opportunity to return to the statement about fake admissions news, because I think you know, in the rumor mill I’m sorry admissions fake news, because I think there are a lot of folks out there who hear things from each other and just assume that it is the you know the truth Like, and I you know, you guys talk about parents saying, well, my student got into such and such college because they blah, blah, blah and what are some of the kinds of things that you think parents should be aware of that when they hear it is fake admissions news

Timothy Fields: 49:17

Yeah, I mean, I think the first thing anybody going through this process should get their information from a credible source, and by credible, being their college counselor or school counselor at their school, calling a college or university that they’re interested in and getting information from there. If they’re fortunate enough to be able to, you know, get an independent consultant, to get information from somebody who is attached to the field in some way. I think you know, a lot of times, if you just are getting information from a parent, recognize that that parent is biased and their child, in their eyes, is the best child in the world, the smartest child in the world, and they did everything to get into that school because of their greatness. But that’s not the reality of it. I call it the wine and cheese circuit that people go around and, oh, my daughter, son or daughter got into this school and you know this is what they scored, this is what they did, and if you follow this play map, then you can get in here too. When that’s not the case because you know, Elizabeth, you said on our you know podcast nobody knows what went into that decision, like nobody outside of that admission office knows what were the you know factors that caused that student to be admitted. So you have to get credible information.

Timothy Fields: 50:40

The other thing that I would say about this process, as far as kind of getting information and Shareem already said I’m doom and gloom is that parents lie, like parents straight up lie to save face because they want their child to be great. I was talking with a friend and she was like yeah, a friend of my daughter got into Emory and she decided to go someplace else and I was like huh, really. And she’s like yeah, this is her name. And I went up and that young lady was denied. However, the mother nobody would ever know. She said, oh, we just decided to go someplace else. But you know, parents, I think just you know. There’s another part where you have to take what they say with a grain of salt. That’s why I have to say you get information from credible sources that are attached to the process and not just somebody who’s been through the process once with one child, in which you have no idea why they got into that college or university.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 51:42

There’s a lot to unpack there.

Vicki Nelson: 51:44

There is, and you know, I sometimes wonder when I hear I think we’ve all heard similar stories. Does mom really know the student got denied Because sometimes that doesn’t, and that goes back to how you set the communication up with your student way back. And if they know that telling you that they got denied is not going to go, well, then maybe not, I mean, who knows. Oh so, so so much to talk about. You know, I think we could stick it out all day, and I don’t know if Elizabeth has any questions that have come on Facebook. But I also just wanted to ask whether there’s anything you wish we had asked you and that you’d like to make sure you get in before we end.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 52:40

You know. Again, I thank you for asking the redefining success question. That’s a big deal for us. We mean it and we want to really amplify that and allow that to organically grow and really be the seeds of this process. Ideally, you know, idealistically, but thank you for this opportunity.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 53:01

Our book for those of you who haven’t listened all the way through the Black Family’s Guide to College Admissions A Conversation of Education, parenting and Race, written by a Black man who went to a predominantly white institution, independent school’s first-generation college student and works on the admission side, and as someone who’s a fourth generation college student, who’s a senior associate dean of admission at a highly selected institution Emory University and a proud HBCU grad. We have different perspectives, different dynamics, but we have a ton of information and we’re proud to share it. And we say two thirds of this book is for anyone, Black, white, green, yellow, purple, orange but there’s parts of it that are selective to black families that we need to discuss. So, again, we hope that we whoever picks it up finds it as an amazing resource. You can find us at understandingthechoices.com.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 53:55

Understandingthechoices Instagram. Understandthechoices Facebook group. Becausethechoices Instagram. Understandthechoices Facebook group. Because we want families to understand the choices Boom, boom, boom. So, no, we’re excited to have this opportunity, and I think we’ve put together something that people are still learning a lot from, and these next few weeks should be interesting in the admissions process. What do you say, Tim?

Timothy Fields: 54:13

Well, I’d say there’s an excellent question that was just dropped in the chat.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 54:17

which is so you don’t like my closing.

Timothy Fields: 54:22

You know I don’t think you’re in a position to close. It’s not our podcast.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 54:26

Touche, I apologize.

Timothy Fields: 54:33

How do you recommend families approach, getting accommodations they need? Is there anything they need to know specifically in college search or application process? And this is the beginning part about it, about getting access to, you know, talented, gifted classes that you know too often. You know a lot of Black and Brown children are, you know, saying that they have, you know, learning differences or so you know how can we excessively, you know fight against that. You know, actually, with just having a conversation prior to getting on, I think you know too often, and this is my opinion you know Black families just you know, aren’t as assertive as other families in the school. I think there are other families that are very much so that did.

Timothy Fields: 55:20

My child needs this, I want my child in these classes.

Timothy Fields: 55:23

This is what might expect and whereas a lot of times black families take more kind of a backseat approach is like, okay, if this is what you recommend, we’ll go along with this, and I think you know a lot of theme that we’ve had throughout is we talked about communication and you have to communicate with the school and you have to set expectations as far as what you want. I was just in a conversation a couple of weeks ago with somebody and the family is like you know, well, they’re not letting my child into AP classes and I was like, well, you know, if you are going to this school, I think at some point you can say I want my child in this AP class and I will take the brunt If my child doesn’t do well, that’s on me. But I think they can. And I think too often families, you know, just take what’s given to them, as opposed to saying this is what I think is best for my child and having that conversation and not just taking what’s given to them.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 56:20

Oh, that’s a lot, that’s a lot.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 56:21

That’s a lot. That’s a lot, no, but it’s, it’s important. It’s an important piece that, again, I think it has many layers to it that, yes, I do think advocacy is huge, particularly as parents partner with, communicate with student, child school, and I guess the only thing that you know, you’ll learn this, Tim and I are. I don’t want to say contradict your time, but we don’t share the same opinion. I do think in educational settings there’s very much often a customer service proponent that you know. If parents, you know student school, you work for me. Thus you need to do what I say for my kid and, of course, there’s going to be pushback from educators. But, yes, I think advocacy good, bullying bad. But I do understand what you’re saying of we have to understand the school and understand the process. The Black family’s got a college admission, competency of education and then hopefully have informed conversations with educational institutions to best support our kids.

Timothy Fields: 57:19

And just before we wrap up, you know I did want to add, you know you asked a question, something that you know wish we would have, you know, asked or shared more about. You know talked about me going to Morehouse College. You know great experience in my life and you know too often when people talk about historically Black college universities they mention Howard, Morehouse, Spelman, North Carolina, A&T, Florida, A&M, maybe Hampton, you know, maybe Tuskegee, and it gets around to eight, nine historically Black college universities and then the conversation gets really, you know, light.

There are over 100 historically Black college universities, have been around for almost 200 years, have served as the foundation of the Black education, post-secondary education in this country, and I think too often they are overlooked.

There’s assumption that they’re only for Black students. Currently over, you know, 20% of the representation at historically Black college universities is not Black students. So it’s something that I would hope that all students, regardless of your race or ethnicity, would consider, because I think they offer a great opportunity for students in education. You know, furthering this conversation, that we’ve had to kind of redefine success as far as the college admission process, that I think you know a lot of Black students spend time at predominantly white institutions and often are one of the few at those institutions. Who’s to say that a student can’t go to historical Black college and university and have a great experience and maybe experience something that is different from what their education is?

Elizabeth Hamblet: 58:56

So, gentlemen, I know leaving one of you with the last word is an interesting prospect.

Timothy Fields: 59:09

It’s always Shereen.

Shereem Herndon-Brown 59:10

No, it’s not, Not today.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 59:12

Well only because I let Shereen start at the beginning. I was going to ask you.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 59:18

Tim to leave us off with. How should and can people get in touch with you?

Timothy Fields: 59:24

Absolutely Understanding the Choices on all platforms. You can go to our website, understandingthechoices.com. You can follow us on Instagram at Understanding the Choices. We have a Facebook group Understanding the Choices, and you can reach us on LinkedIn at Understanding the Choices. So on all platforms it’s Understanding the Choices, and the reason for that is because, hopefully, throughout this conversation, we want to make sure that people have multiple choices. While we’re focused on the college choice, in our book we say college isn’t for everybody, so there are opportunities for students to go directly in the workforce, entrepreneurship, there’s the military, and so we just want people to be well-informed so they can do what’s best for their child, based upon their child’s needs. But we’re so thankful for this opportunity to have this great conversation with you all and we appreciate the invitation.

Vicki Nelson: 1:00:17

I know we are both very grateful that you took time to talk to us today and lots and lots of good information to share with parents, so thank you for taking time to be here.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 1:00:29

Shereem did you want to just share.

Shereem Herndon-Brown 1:00:32

No, no, no, Batman has spoken. Batman, that’s Bruce Wayne. I am Alfred. He has spoken. We are done, but no great opportunity. We thank you, please, as your guests listen to us. Hopefully they found this to be informative and we’d love to connect.

Elizabeth Hamblet: 1:00:47

Somebody in the comments says they’ve got your book and love it, so you know.

Shereem Herndon-Brown: 1:00:51

There it is. Thank you, thank you.


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