How to Give Great Essay Feedback

A Two-Hour Mini-Course w/ Ethan and the College Essay Guy Team

All proceeds from registrations will benefit the Matchlighters Scholars program.


This one’s for you, college counselors.

What should I be looking for when I’m reading a personal statement for the first time?

What techniques can I use to help a student trim words fast?

What questions should a student be asking before they hit “submit”?

I have a lot to say about these things. But guess what? I also have an amazing team of coaches and peer counselors who have a lot to say about these things. So — back by popular demand — we've put together another end-of-year mini-course. And the content this year is new!

How's this course different from our previous courses? Fresh voices. Deeper dive on fewer topics. New content.

How to Give Great Essay Feedback

A Two-Hour Session with Ethan Sawyer and the College Essay Guy Team

This course is the result of requests from counselors to share more on how to provide concise, insightful feedback on students' college essays.

And best of all, it's a fundraiser:

All proceeds from registrations go towards the Matchlighters Scholars program.


That means all the money we raise from sign-ups will go toward helping low-income students receive free college essay help. 

Over two hours, we cover:

  • A "look over my shoulder" session to watch how I (Ethan) edit an actual essay—at three different stages of the process
  • A mini masterclass in cutting words, phrases, and sentences taught by one of my veteran essay specialists
  • Tips for adding unique details at the last minute
  • Before and after case studies
  • Tips for helping students edit essays on sensitive topics such as mental health issues
  • A set of specific questions students can ask about each section of their application before clicking "submit"
  • Lots more

Workshop Real Essays

My team and I will workshop essays from our students, and you'll get the chance to bring yours to the table as well. 

Learn from Expert Coaches

I'm bringing two experts from my team so you'll hear multiple perspectives on the essay-editing process.

Every Stage of the Journey

We'll cover how to provide great feedback on first drafts and last drafts.

All proceeds from this course will support the Matchlighters Scholars Program 

The Matchlighters Scholars program offers free college application counseling for high-achieving, low-income students.

College Essay Guy funds a team that works to match and support hundreds of trained volunteer counselors with students from around the country (and world). 

Want to know more about the program or become a volunteer counselor yourself? 

👉 Learn more here



Here are some Testimonials from another CEG course

“This course provides much of what it took me 38 years to gain through firsthand experience in the business.


Taking it will help anyone looking to hone an important part of their college counseling skills with the goal of truly helping students.” 

Dawn Blanchard


Testimonial from another course

“Ethan Sawyer’s Personal Statement Course is proof positive that we all have something to learn — as long as we find the right teacher. I have been a college counselor for almost 25 years and have worked with many students on many essays.


Taking Ethan’s course added to my toolbox and will make me a better resource for my students and a more insightful and effective counselor overall. 

Lisa Sohmer

Meet Hanah

Hanah Lim is a former high school English teacher and essay specialist who is passionate about helping demystify the college admission process for young people and their families. Before teaching English at the high school she attended growing up, she worked as a college consultant for students in Bangkok, Thailand, directed SAT prep centers in Irvine, California and worked with non-profit groups and as an AVID counselor to help close the achievement gap. She has helped students in the college admissions process from different backgrounds from all over the world and has worked with over 5,000 students in her career. She has helped her students, many of them first generation, get admitted into top universities like Harvard, Yale, Duke, Georgetown, UChicago, Harvard Law, Yale Law, and dozens of other great institutions. In addition to helping seniors write their college essays, Hanah has also trained teachers district-wide on how to take seniors through the college essay process. She graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a B.A. in English with an emphasis in Education and is a credentialed single subject teacher. Hanah also oversees College Essay Guy's essay and application workshop team and organizes speaking events and college application and essay workshops for students at schools and organizations in the US and around the world.

Meet Lyn

Lyn Fairchild Hawks is an experienced essay coach with her own business, Success Story, and loves helping students tell cinematic stories. Her students earn merit scholarships and hear good news from schools such as Duke, UNC-Chapel Hill, Cal Poly, and Cornell. She is a graduate of Stanford University with a B.A. in English and an M.A. in Education and holds an MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She is the author of young adult novels, short stories, and books for educators, including lessons for teaching Shakespeare. As someone juggling critiques from agents and editors, she understands what it’s like to wrestle with feedback and make deep revisions.

For 15 years Lyn designed and ran online programs for gifted youth at Duke University and loves personalizing writing activities for students as well as training teachers. She lives in Chapel Hill, NC with her partner, Greg Hawks, an Americana singer-songwriter, and Sonny the orange tabby, the namesake of bluegrass, jazz, and blues musicians. Her stepson, a proud graduate of DePaul, now mixes sound in an L.A. film studio and still forgives his stepmom for making him rewrite all his essays. She loves drawing, cooking, dancing to ‘80s music, and Wordle.

Meet Ethan

Ethan Sawyer is a nationally recognized college essay expert, sought-after speaker, and author of the Amazon bestsellers College Essay Essentials and College Admission Essentials.

Each year he helps thousands of students and counselors through his online courses, workshops, articles, products, and books, and works privately with a small number of students.

A graduate of Northwestern University, Ethan holds an MFA from UC Irvine, two counseling certificates, is certified in Myers-Briggs and hypnotherapy. He lives in Los Angeles with his beautiful wife and daughter.


Up-level your essay coaching game.

$297 one time -

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$99 X 3 months -

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Pay-what-you-can options below. 

“The College Essay Guy has transformed my understanding of how to write college application essays and has enabled me to help students in so many practical and effective ways. His resources and expertise are invaluable! Read his book, take his classes, and learn all he has to offer--he's amazing!”

Sharon Spiers

Can’t afford this course?
We offer pay-what-you-can spots

Access is really important to me. In fact, it’s at the heart of most of everything I do and is why so many resources on my site are free. It’s why I’m offering pay-what-you-can spots for high school college counselors in schools, CBOs, or non-profits with small budgets and few resources for professional development.


“Wait, so if our counseling department doesn’t have a budget, we can still join?”


Yep. If that’s you, request a pay-what-you-can spot. Don’t be shy; I’d love to have you.

Request a pay-what-you can spot