For high school students and their parents, the process of applying to colleges can be daunting. The forms, the essays, and the hurdles of filing for financial aid can all be overwhelming. High school guidance counselors can be a big help, but there is no substitute for someone who has an inside track into and focuses solely on how the process works. Access Success is that guide for families, offering an array of services to help high school students get into the college of their choice. The “Access” in Access Success stands for Academics, College Counseling & Educational Success Services, which describes exactly what the company provides. The company’s services range from academic tutoring for K-12th grade to college test prep, as well as college application and essay assistance to financial aid guidance. “Our main focus is helping high school students to be in the best position for acceptance into the colleges they would like to attend,” says Access Success founder Francesca Morrissey. “We’re really here to educate students and parents on what will most likely be the second greatest expense of their lives, while also helping them to set realistic expectations regarding college admission.” Morrissey founded Access Success after going through her own college journey with her daugher in 2012. “I was very hands on, working closely with my daughter’s school advisor and talking to a number of admissions staff. I really gained an education into the process, so much so that a number of friends began asking me for help. It was then I realized this could be a business for me.” Morrissey continues to make more than a dozen school visits a year, taking tours and attending info sessions, as well as meeting with admissions directors and staff. Last year, Morrissey worked with 85 high school seniors who attended 22 different high schools and were accepted to over 150 colleges. Access Success has offices in New Milford and Norwalk, which recently opened in August, expanding south as they began to see more students from the Danbury and Ridgefield areas. Among the most popular of its services are SAT prep, Common Application and essay assistance, and help negotiating financial aid. While these are services mainly for juniors and seniors in high school, Morrissey recommends families educate themselves early in the process. “Often the first time I see a student is at the end of junior year when it is really too late to plan their high school courses and extracurriculars so they’re in the best position for college admission,” says Morrissey. “If they come to us early in their high school career, we can help guide them on the things they need to do to set themselves up for success throughout high school.” Unlike many college counseling services, Access Success does not charge a retainer fee, but offers services on an a la carte basis. “All of our prices are online, and while I do have package programs available, I encourage families to use us as they need us.” If college is in your child’s future, reach out to Access Success for help to demystify the application process and set your child up to gain acceptance to the right college for them. Visit Access Success online at accesssuccess.com or call 203.788.5971.