Why a Lizard?

The name “Lizard” was chosen three decades ago and grew to represent our friendly, worldly, approachable, and versatile way of serving our students. When people think of college planning, they envision themselves embarking on a quest to discover their personalized direction, pathway, and future. A lizard follows that same path as it negotiates a sometimes complex desert or jungle environment. By navigating toward a goal and climbing through complicated terrain, lizards search for what will make them happy and the sustenance to survive and thrive.

The idea and resonance of a lizard sticks in people’s mind. It has a non-threatening visual appeal, which is necessary for a rigorous and often complicated process. When people enter our professional offices, they are greeted with a 70-inch video graphic touch screen and four large and connected monitors full of information. We provide students and parents with technology-infused, though personalized, access to information, education, and wisdom. We encourage and motivate students as we demystify the college application process and support students in achieving their goals. The Lizard serves as not only a logo/trademark, but also as a companion along the college and career-planning trail. We invite you to “be a Lizard!”

The Lizard Process

When you come the first time, you will begin the journey with us. Wherever you are in the thinking process of your college planning trek, that is where we will begin to collaborate on your ideal journey. Course selection, study skills training, and test prep options are part of the process, but we also share a myriad of summer program options, internships, community service, and leadership opportunities. We have lists of scholarships to help find money for college and assist throughout the rest of the financial aid process.

The Lizard Experience

Our experts share their specifically focused and tailored knowledge with you. Michelle Tahan is an expert in working on the SlideRoom accounts for art, music, dance, theater, graphic design, animation, and film. She also assists students with scripts, essay editing, video editing, highlight films, resumes, graphic artwork and other materials. In addition to essay editing and resume design, which she has done with us since 2012, Michelle assists with gathering the information you need to know to make good decisions. Dr. Winston, with her thirty-two years in the field, will serve as your personalized guide throughout the planning and admissions process. Bottom line - our students succeed!!!

What to Expect

We are service-oriented. During application season, we are often in the office by 4am and remain in the office until midnight. We have stayed up around the clock to help students and have flown to cities across the country and in different continents when necessary. We have flown to colleges during finals to help students study and frequently speak in high schools and organizations both nationally and internationally. We are experienced and dedicated.

We serve our students' needs. Whether it is application support services, essay assistance, interview preparation, scholarships, contests, career mapping, summer programs, tutoring, test prep, road trips to visit colleges, resume development, video essays, portfolios, internships, or simply a list of colleges to consider, we serve you.

We offer comprehensive college planning or a la carte choices. We can create individualized checklists tailored to your needs, including questions to ask admissions personnel. We set up mock admissions interviews. We film and edit a video essay we create for you and tailor it to up to three different school requirements. Throughout the essay process, we help you find your authentic voice as you determine what you want to communicate about your life and personal experiences. Your essays will make your unique personality shine through. We will guide you in all aspects of your essay writing process. We also assist you through the application process.

We can design and organize information charts that track your logins, communication, and follow through during the process. We can also assist with the selection of scholarships that fit your talents and experience as well as the processing of your financial aid/scholarship forms and international student documents (visa, bank statements, and miscellaneous items). We are grateful and honored to have the opportunity to share our expertise with students and families. 

Hourly Consulting

We can meet you for appointments at our office or either synchronously or asynchronously online. We have a virtual system that allows us to see you, share screens, and edit together. We charge $150/hour for two hour sessions ($300) or $200 for one hour sessions. For asynchronous research, editing, and other work, we charge $150 per hour. Discounts are available for groups of hours, portfolio packages, and publishing your books. 


Many of our clients pay each time, though we offer a discount for students/families who pay in advance. However, we do not bind you to a complex agreement. You may cancel at any time. If you pay in advance, you can stop and only pay for the hours you used that would have been charged if you paid the regular hourly price. Surprisingly, many families come to us AFTER they have bought into a binding contract elsewhere and those counselors do nothing. This is sad, but this does not happen with us. We must perform or you will not continue to come. This is why we do not focus on strapping you to a big package you cannot escape. You return because we offer value.