photo by Catarina Carosa

photo by Catarina Carosa

The average person graduates from college with $40,000 in student loans. Thirty percent of students drop out or transfer in the first two years of attending college. The average person changes majors four times. Most families with students preparing to go to college or already attending college do not know these statistics and can be easily overwhelmed by the uncharted territory, according to Paul Celuch, founder of College Assistance Plus (CAPlus), located in Honeoye Falls. Families don’t have to go through the college application process blind though. With the use of resources at CAPlus, students and their families have a team of dedicated professionals to back them up every step of the way.

Colleges look at four things when deciding on whether a student is admitted or not, according to Celuch. ”One is a student’s grade point average, their SAT or ACT scores, their admissions essay, and lastly, how they interview.”

Attending college now is about more than just the ‘where’ though, and it can pose a great financial burden on families. CAPlus is dedicated to limiting college debt and saving the family money. They take the student’s academic information, along with the family’s financial information, and input it into their database. “This allows us to tell students what kind of packages they’ll receive from these schools before they even apply,” says Celuch. “We also teach students how to interview and control the interview by bringing their best aspects forward.”

CAPlus looks at more than the financial aspect of college. They also look at what the student really wants to do with their lives. “We ask each student about their interests, passions, and their gifts,” says Celuch. “Where those three things come together is what you should do with your life.”

Prior to establishing CAPlus 12 years ago, Celuch was the vice president for IBM in Rochester and had put two sons through college himself. “I was on the parents’ board at both my son’s schools. While attending the board meetings, it occurred to me that there was a better way to do this and a more intelligent way for people to do this.”

After extensive research, Celuch and his business partner determined that there was little, if any, expertise readily available to help college-bound students and parents go through the college process, while focusing on minimizing debt. They decided to commit themselves to helping parents of high school students through the college process, and developed a service that continues to guide parents toward a college choice that guarantees a great education and limits college debt.
Over the years, College Assistance Plus has helped thousands of clients across the United States. What makes CAPlus truly successful though is that Celuch and his team don’t look at clients simply as clients, but as part of the CAPlus family.

CAPlus is holding a college planning seminar for high school athletes on Wednesday, July 20 at Oak Hill Country Club, 145 Kailbourn Rd., in Rochester. This event begins at 6:30 pm and will recognize all 2015 – 2016 Greater Rochester Athletes. All high school students and families are welcome. Presentation topics include Sports Nutrition; Sports Injury Protection; and the College Search for the High School Athlete. For more information or to RSVP, email caplus@collegeassistanceplus.com or call (585) 582-1846.

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