A native of Santa Barbara, Cassie Nichols earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Princeton University. At Princeton, she was an NCAA All-American and Academic All-American athlete, as well as captain of the Princeton women’s water polo team.
After graduating from Princeton, Cassie settled in New Haven, Connecticut and conducted educational research at Yale University. At Yale, Cassie researched leadership in the college environment and helped coordinate educational studies on college campuses throughout the country.
Cassie later accepted a faculty position at Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, Connecticut, where she taught American and World Literature to high school juniors and seniors. It was at Choate that Cassie taught workshops on the college application essay, guiding her students in their search for the right college and assisting them in the college application process.
Cassie returned to Santa Barbara to earn a Masters of Arts degree in Education from University of California, Santa Barbara. While at UCSB, Cassie taught college freshman composition courses for UCSB’s Writing Program and conducted extensive research on the teaching of writing and literature. She also supervised and facilitated UCSB’s student teachers as they prepared their Masters of Education theses.
With a Masters of Arts in Education completed, Cassie began working with independent college counseling organizations in Southern California. During this time she worked one-on-one with students and families, and conducted workshops and presentations in the surrounding community.
Cassie founded College Specific in response to the clear need for guidance and reassurance on the college admissions process, and to help students create a clear and sustainable path to the college of their choice. In addition to providing individual guidance to families, Cassie publishes articles, hosts college admissions workshops and presentations throughout the country, and works with the College Specific team to produce Toolkits by College Specific, a collection of multimedia products that focus on the college admissions process.
In 2012, Cassie published The College Essay Trap, a book designed to help students through the college essay-writing process. Throughout the year, Cassie conducts public and private essay workshops for students, teachers, and parents.
After a decade in the field of Education as a teacher, researcher and college counselor, Cassie is well aware of how stressful it can be for students and parents to navigate the college admissions process alone. Her goal is simple: to ease their stress and get them excited about college along the way.