Hanna Stotland, Admissions Consultant

Private counselor specializing in educational crisis management

College and Graduate School Applicants in Special Circumstances

Hanna Stotland specializes in counseling students who face unique challenges in the college or graduate school application process. She has helped students apply successfully despite a range of problems that required explanation:

  • Eating disorders
  • Depression
  • Title IX problems
  • Substance abuse and treatment
  • Death in the family
  • Medical crisis
  • Criminal charges or arrests
  • Academic dishonesty
  • Suspension/expulsion
  • Multiple moves during high school
  • One unexplained semester or year of lower grades

Parents and students often give up hope and assume that a selective college, or any college at all, is out of the question for students with one or more problems on their records. But you might be surprised to learn how open-minded colleges can be about these issues when the student has changed and explains the transformation effectively. Hanna herself made it to Harvard despite straight F's in her last three semesters of high school. There is a strategy for every student who wants to return to an academic path. Sometimes community college or a planned transfer is a component of the plan; sometimes an international university is the right solution; sometimes it is just a matter of explaining the history in a more effective manner. Whatever the problem, Hanna can help you create a unique solution that works for your family.

Hanna has also helped students who have dealt with an educational crisis to enter graduate school, including JD, MD, MBA, and Ph.D. programs. She has experience with students entering as first-years or as graduate transfers. She can even assist with disclosures and background checks related to professional licensure.

Hanna is a nationally recognized expert on counseling students with application irregularities. She is regularly invited to deliver talks on the subject to fellow professionals at major conferences. She has also been asked to speak to the press on related issues. Some highlights of her speaking experience include:

Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) national conferences:

San Diego, CA 2013 

Denver, CO 2017

Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA) national conferences: 

Portland, OR 2014

Philadelphia, PA 2016

Long Beach, CA 2017

National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) regional affiliate annual conferences:

Pacific Northwest (PNACAC): Boise, Idaho 2017

Michigan (MACAC): Ann Arbor, MI 2018

Ohio (OACAC): Columbus, OH 2018

Illinois (IACAC): Itasca, IL 2018

Texas (TACAC): Galveston, TX 2018

New Jersey (NJACAC): Atlantic City, NJ 2018

Western (WACAC): Monterey, CA 2018

New England & New York State (NEACAC & NYSACAC) Superconference: Poughkeepsie, NY 2018


Mental health professional conferences:

Adolescent and Young Adult Collective Visions Conference: Malibu, CA 2018

Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA) national webinars: 

Explain Fully on a Separate Sheet: The Special Circumstances Essay 2014

Understanding Title IX and Sexual Assault on Campus: Perspectives from the Law 2017

Press coverage:

Interview on WNYC's Radiolab podcast

Interview on NPR's All Things Considered

Buzzfeed.com profile

Letter in the New York Times