Maizie Simpson

Magoosh Supports #BetterMakeRoom

Better Make Room is a campaign that Michelle Obama recently launched so that students in the pivotal years between the ages of 14 and 19 have a chance to inspire and encourage one another to complete their college educations. We love that! And we hope to see the campaign make a difference.

That’s why, even though none of us is 14-19 years old (ah, the good old days), we still wanted to play a part in helping #BetterMakeRoom succeed. So, a few people on our team answered questions about their own university experiences. We hope there are students out there who will be able to relate to these answers, and that they find inspiration and motivation in what these Magooshers have to say. Enjoy!


Who or what inspired you to go to college?

Amrita-Kulkarni_avatar_14291258961Amrita Kulkarni, Operations Manager

UC Berkeley (B.A. Political Economy)

“Though there was never any choice in matter (My parents made it pretty clear that I was going to college), my dad inspired me to go. He always reminded me how he had to study so hard in order to succeed in India and make it in America.”



Rita Kreig, SAT/ACT Marketing Manager

UC San Diego (B.A. International Studies, Political Science) | (Master of Pacific International Affairs)

“My mom! Though she grew up under conditions of extreme poverty and racism, she defied the odds by putting herself through college and medical school. She overcame many obstacles to get an education, and doing so allowed her to break the cycle of poverty and discrimination.”


Dani-Lichliter_avatar_175x175Dani Lichliter, Grad Product Marketing Manager

Penn State University (BPhil — Bachelor of Philosophy — Non-Profit Management)

“Seeing my older sister go to college was really inspirational for me! I went on college tours with her when I was in middle school and then watched her go through the application process. Once she was in college, she made a great group of friends, was taking really interesting classes, and even had an internship. I knew I wanted to go to college and follow in her footsteps.”


What was the best part of college for you?

Jessica-Ellis-avatar-highresJessica Ellis, SAT/ACT Product Manager

Georgetown (B.S. Science, Technology and International Affairs)

“Being able to talk to and work with students whose backgrounds were so different from mine. I did a lot of group projects with students who were Veterans and had recently come back from Afghanistan and Iraq. Hearing about their experiences helped shape my world-view.”



Travis Coleman, LSAT Expert

Boston College (B.A. English) | New York University Law School (J.D.)

“Study abroad! I spent a summer in Ireland learning about the history of Irish theater, and then a semester in India studying arts and culture. There were grants for the summer program and my financial aid applied to the semester in India, so it actually cost a little less than going to my regular undergrad for a semester. I got to travel all over the world and meet tons of incredible artists, performers, and professors. That was still probably the most exciting year of my life.”


What advice do you have for others who might be thinking about college?

Jessica-photoJessica Wan, Director of Marketing

Stanford (B.A. Music, B.S. Product Design) | Haas School of Business, UC Berkeley (MBA)

“The physical place matters. If you have the time and the funds, go visit the campuses that interest you. Choosing a home for the next four years is a huge decision! Plus, you might stick around that area after you graduate, so make sure to visit the surrounding cities and towns too. For me, there was an exact moment, in an exact location, where I knew that I was making the right decision. I go visit that spot every time I go back to campus.”



Mike McGarry, GMAT and Praxis Expert

Harvard University (A.B. Physics) | Harvard Divinity School (Master of Theological Studies)

“Don’t assume that you have any understanding at all of the person you will be when you are done with a college education.  It will not be you exactly as you are now, just with more knowledge and more choices.  It will be a much wider and more expanded version of you, and you cannot even see all the implications of that, for your life and for your priorities, from where you sit now.  Your potential is always more than you can understand, so if you only get to a place that you were able to predict beforehand, you would have fallen short of your potential.  College is for catalyzing human potential.”




  • Maizie Simpson

    Maizie writes about Magoosh and gets others to talk about Magoosh. A graduate of the University of Arizona (Bear Down!) with a BA in Journalism, she loves nuanced grammar rules, learning strange languages, and traveling to new places. She has an unnatural obsession with Middle Eastern politics and Mexican food.