National Association for College Admission Counseling
Higher Education Consultants Association
Independent Educational Consultants Association
Member of Western Association for College Admission Counseling


My mission is to decode and simplify the college application process for both students and parents, the goal being to find a great college fit, a ‘happy place’  for the student, and minimize the stress for families in the process. I accomplish this through 1:1 meetings (in-person and virtual) guiding and supporting the student, step by step, through this exciting phase of their lives.


Our Services

Our services include advising course selections during Junior and Senior years in High School, creating a balanced college list depending upon the academic record, interests, and activities of the student, reviewing essays and applications, building resumes, mock interviews, encouraging demonstrated interest and tracking progress till the student receives acceptances. I also help families review acceptance letters and guide them in the decision-making process.

College Academic Counselor for Sophomores

Sophomores and Rising Juniors

Guidance on 

  • Course selections
  • Test selection, how to prepare
  • Extracurricular Activities
  • Summer Program Enrichment Activities
  • Community Service and Volunteering
  • College Research and Guidance on College Visits
  • Initial College List Building
College Application Process for Bay Area students

Rising Seniors

College Application Process

  • Skills and Interest Assessment
  • Balanced College List Creation
  • Applications and Essay Review
  • Mock Interview Prep
  • Guidance with Demonstrated Interest
  • Guidance on College Visits, Campus Tours
  • Resume Building, LinkedIn Profile (if required)
College Planning Advisor from UC Berkeley

Type of Students Served

  • High School (Sophomores, Juniors, Seniors)
  • Transfer students
  • First-Generation students

My Courses

Films can shape the destiny of talented youngsters, who want to

How I Work

College Counseling Package for Sophomores

Package 1

Sophomore to Senior Package, Get an early start on the college application process.

College Counseling Package for Juniors

Package 2

Junior Year Package: College List, Application, and Essays

College Counseling Package for Seniors

Package 3

Senior Year Package: College List, Application, and Essays

Step by step College List Creation

Apps and Essay Review

Demonstrated Interest

Mock Interviews


Excerpt from Berkeley Splash Parent Program at UC Berkeley
Topic- University of California- The 13 Factors of Comprehensive Review (Nov. 18, 2023)

Excerpt from ‘Let’s Talk Essays- for Juniors’
Initial Brainstorming of the 8 UC PIQs (29th Oct 2023)


Holistic Approach to Teaching

I offer myriad subjects of study in your journey of mastering yourself.

What people think about me

Knowing what students think helps my growth

“Before having the opportunity to work with Ms. Kakkar, I was incredibly worried that I would have to navigate the college application process on my own. After our first few meetings, however, it felt like a weight had been lifted from my shoulders. Ms. Kakkar was dedicated and efficient right from the start, and we wasted no time in setting goals and creating a clear plan of action. Despite her busy schedule, she was always quick to answer my questions or assist me with essays, and her diligence helped me stay on track as well. 

Ms. Kakkar has a wealth of knowledge and is always ready to share insight and resources. Thanks to her, I was able to take advantage of so many opportunities that I may not have even found on my own. The value of having someone who knows both about you as an individual and about the admissions process cannot be overlooked; having Ms. Kakkar to give me advice on my essays was a resource that I cannot be grateful enough for. The support and the information that I received from her gave me the confidence to work towards ambitious goals, and I really believe that her help was instrumental in my acceptance into incredibly useful programs and several of my dream schools. 

Even though my college admissions process has concluded, Ms. Kakkar remains a source of guidance and encouragement. She truly wants to ensure that her students succeed, and I appreciate her endlessly for all that she has done for me throughout this entire process.”

“Working with Mausami last year as a college counseling volunteer, I was able to see how successful she was with connecting with students, understanding their goals, and supporting them every step of the way from building a college list to registering for the college they will attend. Her training through UC Berkeley’s Extension program gives her extensive knowledge of the application process for all higher education systems as well as the financial aid process. If you are looking for someone who will take the time to get to know your student and advise them to find the best-fit college for them, Mausami would be right for you.”
I am very grateful to have had you as my college advisor. Your guidance was invaluable to me throughout my college application journey. I remember feeling quite nervous and lost when I first began the process, but thanks to you, I was able to meet all my deadlines and compete my work at a good pace. It’s thanks to your help that I’ve not only succeeded in my applications, but I’ve also become a more responsible person as a result of this experience.

After experimenting with several college counselors by trial & error, we finally came across Ms. Kakkar’s counseling services. My prior experience with college counselors was a mixed bag. Some were happy to collect their fees and throw the standard template material at us. Others gave us templated advise that was not quite tailored for our son. Overall we had a feeling of unfulfilment and anxiety because the clock was ticking and we had no counselor.

We were fortunate to have met Ms. Kakkar at the right time. In the very first meeting we learnt that she was a no-nonsense counselor. She was extremely organized with her materials and clearly explained how she, the student and parents will work together as a team on the apps process. She helped my son select his coursework, helped him plan his time and activities at school and outside, gave the right advice on when to take SAT and helped us choose the list of colleges and alerted us on various college information sessions. Once the apps process began the level of attention my son got was really extraordinary. Ms. Kakkar is as good as a real college admissions officer (I am not exaggerating one bit!) in providing feedback on the essays and helping prepare the overall application packet. She helped review the application packet thoroughly for each college and helped my son complete the apps early in the cycle to maximize his chances. Further she gave us tips and useful info on how to apply for scholarships. Thanks to her services, we are proud of our son’s application results. Ms. Kakkar is still not done. She is helping us take the next steps in choosing among the admitted colleges. She is truly an extraordinary counselor.

You should consider yourself lucky to have your kids join her program. Good luck!

Our experience with Mausami has been amazing. We entered the US admission cycle quite late. However, when I reached out to Mausami, she was still willing to support us with their program and helped through everything step by step. She is very accessible, reliable, and helpful, most importantly gives full attention and time to my son. We could not have had a more dedicated, inspiring, and talented person to help coach my son through multiple options. She helped us realize my son’s best-fit schools and find his authentic voice through his passions, experiences, and challenges. She encouraged my son to weave them together through essays which made them stand out. She went above and beyond to support my son through the stressful time and I am so appreciative of how her guidance is supporting us shortlist some amazing schools.
Having you as a counselor was an amazing experience. I felt lost at the beginning of the college process. I had no idea where to begin, but you were able to help me out a lot. When I was told I would be paired up with a counselor, I expected someone who would regularly check on me to make sure I was doing alright, and someone who would lead me towards the right direction. All of this was fulfilled. You made sure that I was always on track by giving me tasks for the week, and we met every week which was great. Those consistent meetings honestly kept me on track. I needed help with everything in general, and you were able to do just that. I really enjoyed having you as my coach because now, I am going to college, and I am so excited!  I couldn’t have done it without your help. You helped me so much through the process and I am so thankful for that.
As a transfer student, I always worried about my credits not transferring from one college to the next, but Our College Advisor made sure that I was on the right track by getting me to ask my university about my credits. OCA did a great job with getting me to contact a counselor at Santa Clara University to make sure I would graduate on time. Our College Advisor made the process seamless and now I am attending Santa Clara University without the worry of graduating later than planned. 
We worked with Our College Advisor and strongly recommend this business. Ms Kakkar is very methodical in her work and guides the student very well while keeping the parents informed. She is very knowledgeable in her domain and is always there for help and
Our College Advisor was a tremendous help. I received help and step-by step guidance that was tailored to my likes, dislikes, hobbies, aesthetics and more. There was always detailed assistance every step of the way. Our College Advisor made the process simple and less daunting and made sure that all of my questions were answered. I am so glad that I worked with Ms. Kakkar at Our College Advisor.
-Student accepted at all the UCs and a Questbridge Semi-Finalist (Class of 2024)
Coordinator of Counseling, Public School, Hayward CA.
Student Pursuing Biological Sciences at UC Davis
Parent of a student attending ASU for Computer Science
Testimonial from Parent
Parent of a student attending SJSU for Business
Student attending UC Davis for Psychology
Transfer Student to Santa Clara University
Parent of a student with multiple acceptances to Purdue, UIUC, UW, UCs, SLU, Chapman and more
Student attending St. Mary’s College of California


Knowing what students think helps my growth

What should we look for in a college counselor or an Independent Educational Consultant (IEC)?

I recommend working with a certified college counselor who is a member of a professional organization like IECA, or HECA. Members of these professional organizations are held to the highest standards and abide by a code of ethics, participate in college tours, webinars, and meetings, and collaborate with other IECs to provide up-to-date information to the families we work with. So, you benefit from the expertise and experience of many other IECs when you work with an IECA or HECA member or counselor.

What are the benefits of working with an IEC?

You can read about the 10 benefits of working with an IEC on my blog

Why work with an Independent Educational Consultant (IEC)?

When is the best time to sign up for a package and start working with a college counselor?

I offer Package 1 at the start of Sophomore year. If possible, students should start early on in Sophomore year to get the full advantage of the package. That way, I can work with them early on, help them with high school course selection, major exploration, and pathways, planning their summer and spring breaks. The price of the Package does not change if you join later in Sophomore year but the advantage of joining earlier is that the student gets more time to work on different aspects of the application process without the stress.

What if I only need help with essays and activities?

Please look at the details of the Essays and Extracurriculars Package for Late Seniors. I only accept a few seniors, time permitting who have the rest of things figured out when they come to me e.g. their college list, college research, coursework. This package is only offered July-September.  If interested, please reach out to me in May-June to check my availability and spots open. 

Do you work with students who only want to apply to Ivies or highly selective schools?

My methodology is that I work with students on a balanced college list. Their final application list should have a few reach, a few target or match schools and a few likely schools. Ivies or highly selective schools can be in the reach or highly selective category, but the final application list needs to be balanced and realistic. 

What is unique about your practice?

I work with a lot of first-gen families, immigrants, and families whose first child is heading to college. Therefore, they may not be well-versed with all the aspects of the application process and need information and guidance. I offer Parent Meetings in my packages so that parents can be informed and involved in the process. However, I work one-on-one with the students when it comes to essay brainstorming and essay writing. 

Do you have a package for middle school? How do we get started?

Many parents have been inquiring about guidance for their middle-school children. I only take on very few, motivated students. Most of them are either referrals or families I have worked with earlier. Please reach out to me via email, if interested. I offer an initial, 30-minute, free, Zoom call to know the child, their hobbies, and interests. Then I offer 2 sessions, one every 6 months, 1 hour each to meet with the students and guide them with transcript review, course selections, summer planning, extracurriculars, and more. If the family would like additional time, I can offer more hours, time, and workload permitting.

How can we get regular updates from you about the college application process?

Please sign up for my monthly newsletter below or from the Contact Page
The newsletter is sent out mid-month.

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