Olivia Valdes

Olivia Valdes is a writer and editor specializing in education, culture, travel, technology, and the arts. Her varied publication credits include theater and book reviews, tech blogs, and poetry. She especially enjoys sharing strategies to make students' lives happier and easier. She has over five years of experience as an independent college admissions consultant and recently launched Zen Admissions, a college admissions advising service.


In her work as an admissions consultant, Olivia plays the roles of essay editor, brainstorming partner, writing teacher, scholarship advisor, academic planner, time management coach, and more. As a writer and editor, she relishes the unique challenges of the admissions process and enjoys empowering students to craft their own one-of-a-kind narratives.

After witnessing the intense burden placed on students by the hyper-competitive admissions process, she identified the need for an admissions advising firm that takes students' mental health and well-being into account. After graduating from Yale in 2016, she set out to fill this niche, and Zen Admissions was born.


Olivia holds a B.A. in American Studies from Yale University.

ThoughtCo and Dotdash

ThoughtCo is a premier reference site focusing on expert-created education content. We are one of the top-10 information sites in the world as rated by comScore, a leading Internet measurement company. Every month, more than 13 million readers seek answers to their questions on ThoughtCo.

For more than 20 years, Dotdash brands have been helping people find answers, solve problems, and get inspired. We are one of the top-20 largest content publishers on the Internet according to comScore, and reach more than 30% of the U.S. population monthly. Our brands collectively have won more than 20 industry awards in the last year alone, and recently Dotdash was named Publisher of the Year by Digiday, a leading industry publication.

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