Usphere: Turning The College Application Process Upside Down

uspherelogo.pngApplying to college takes a lot of time searching, comparing, and filling out customized forms. The consequence of all this overhead is that most students apply to fewer schools, focusing on well known names. Usphere is an Evanston, Illinois based startup looking to change that.

Usphere lets students fill out a single application and be considered by their network of colleges. When you’ve completed the application, it’s tossed into their applicant search engine and only accessible by the 33 schools in their network. If a school likes you, they email you an acceptance letter complete with a bottom line price tag to attend. The application service costs $65, although they have several free college search tools.

Applications are not the same as the multi-school “standard application” style forms ivy leaguers and state school applicants are familiar with. Usphere asks for the usual grades and numbers you can upload any transcripts, letters of recommendation, or files that will help your application stand out from the rest. However, Usphere replaces the application essay with a personality profile. Kind of like for colleges.

Usphere advertises the service as an opportunity to apply and be accepted to schools “off the beaten path” that students may not have thought about before. They doesn’t openly publish the schools in its directory, but one can guess it consists of niche schools who need the extra applicants and that applicants might not know a lot about.

College bound TechCrunch readers should also check out TuitionCoach’s salary wizard and LocalSchools’ college search engine.