For the past two decades, Emily’s career has been all-things-admissions, helping students get accepted into Brown, Cornell, Duke, Georgetown, Stanford, and University of Chicago—to name a few.
Her admissions journey has taken her from Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management’s part-time MBA program to Saint Mary’s College in Indiana to heading up her own college counseling firm for eight years—all the while helping students with everything from getting their essays right to their applications in on time.
As associate director of admissions and senior deputy director at Envision EMI, she assisted students of all ages in finding career and leadership programs, and through Iowa’s GEAR UP program (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs), she helped minority and low-income students prepare for college.
While her extensive career has taken her all over the Midwest, Emily spent her undergrad days at Wellesley College (where she double-majored in Africana Studies and Religion) and did a semester abroad in Kenya. Back home in Iowa, however, she is annually crowned Aunt of the Year by her nieces and nephews.
Education & Experience
- MSEd, Higher Education and Policy, Northwestern University
- B.A. in Africana Studies, Wellesley College
- Assistant Director of Admission, Northwestern University, The Kellogg School of Management
- Associate Director of Admission, Saint Mary’s College
- Independent College Counselor
Professional Organization Memberships
What are people saying about Collegewise?
We couldn’t be happier with the counseling we received during the college selection and application process. Our counselor, Emily Selden, was informative, encouraging, and always readily available to help us and guide us. If we needed something quickly, we got it quickly. From helping Noah pick colleges to editing his essays, the staff went above and beyond, and at a very reasonable cost. I would definitely recommend Emily and Collegewise!
Parent of Noah Whelpley
Before I met Emily, I didn’t know what I wanted to write about, let alone how to structure my essay. Yet after answering a detailed questionnaire and talking with Emily, I came up with an amazing theme, finding my place. Through many sessions working with Emily, I developed my ideas on paper and built a truly amazing essay, one which I believe is the best paper I’ve ever written.
Collegewise provided me with a better understanding of the college application and decision process than I thought possible. Collegewise’s guidance throughout the process allowed me to really figure out what I was looking for in a college, while also maximizing my options.
Santa Clara University
Collegewise not only helped me find a number of great potential schools, but also helped open my eyes to some of the great components of the college experience to come.
California Polytechnic State University
Collegewise helped make my daughter’s college application process smooth and painless. In the end, my daughter was accepted to and will be attending her first choice school, USD. I could not be more thrilled for Alana, and I owe so much to Collegewise for making my daughter’s dream school a reality!
Torrey Mellgren, Parent of Alana Mellgren
University of San Diego
Sophie looked forward to her appointments and did the prep work religiously. Collegewise took the right approach, with clear guidance but a light touch in terms of letting Sophie drive the decision-making. Sophie owned her approach and ended up happy with her options.