Everyone who has plans about studying abroad has heard of Edwise International. They are one of the most famous study abroad consultants in Mumbai and India. Due to our personal experience dealing with Edwise, we are able to comment about their services, and therefore tell other aspiring students the truth. There are atleast 50-60 study abroad consultants in the country, some of which are in business for over a long time sending students to foreign destinations for college studies, how do they rate against edwise?
The Head office of Edwise is sprawling, and anyone would be impressed by the grandeur of the place. They have personalized counselors and advisors to help each student, and they boast of having 20 something offices all over the country,5 of which are in Mumbai itself.
WHAT WE LIKE
The sheer infrastructure of the entire organization is enough to compel any parent to opt for edwise over any other consultant. The counselors there are very resourceful, informative and sometimes “pushy”. We were surprised when for a few days we hadn’t gotten back to Edwise, the counselor called us a few times to find out what happened and if everything was alright.
OF course the major attraction is that all their services are FREE. They said the only charges that needed to be paid were the official fees for the tests (IELTS/TOEFL) and other things like visas and all. They gave us a list of free services that we could avail of if we decided to go though them. We were particularly impressed with the visa services and the entire admission process which can be tedious.
Some of the good points:
1.Entire admission process is taken care of, all you need to do is sign on the pages, and they send the documents across, all at their cost
2.Help with visa and passport formalities.
3.EDUCATION FAIRS-A highlight of their services. They arrange educational fairs every few months that are advertised in the newspapers. At these fairs, some representatives from each college can meet the parents individually and give them admission there on the SPOT! This seems like a very good deal, instead of going through the entire process of sending forms, which still has to be done, but atleast you know before hand where you stand, instead of waiting for a few anxious months and then being told yes or no.
4.IELTS/TOEFL TRAINING-One of the best features that EDWISE provides to its students is the free coaching classes for IELTS/TOEFL, which outside costs a bomb! But its just one fo the many services that is extended to its customers
WHAT WE DON’T:
Going through all these FREE SERVICES without charging a dime for their services. Which made us think. So we did some quick calculations (approximations)
-about 3000 for each application sent for say 5 universities=15,000
-costs of admission forms and brochures for 5 universities=5000
So EDWISE was paying about Rs.33,500 (approx) for each student, without charging anything from us, and not to mention the salaries of the counselors general infrastructure for 20 HUGE offices all over the country.
What we suspect was the 400+ universities and colleges that EDWISE “represents” gives them HUGE kick backs for each student getting admitted to their university
Lets face it. Education is a business too, colleges are not charitable organsitions, just as hospitals aren’t. Even if they both appear “noble in nature” ,they are out to make money, and giving a kick back even in the medical profession is not unheard of.
HOW DOES THIS AFFECT YOU?
For starters, Edwise is only goig to refer you to one fo the 400 clients of theirs. Scanning through the list made us feel that most of those colleges were not the BEST, but average ,since EDWISE also claimed that they were reasonable tuition fees, which is fair I think. The downside to this is that you don’t have any choice, and even if you want some college outside of that list it might be impossible because EDWISE has no tie up with them, or in other words, Edwise wont get a commission from that outside college.
Getting to know the ins and outs of this business, we chose not to go with edwise, but to send our applications to 5 colleges of our personal choice. But we did opt for one of edwise’s classes, of course by paying for it, since we weren’t using their services. This might be hard for others, doing it without any advice, as its like searching for toothpick in the dark. What EDWISE does is makes the entire process very easy to manage and easy to follow. You don’t do anything. So if most of you’ll want to take it easy and sit back and relax while all the paperwork is taken care of, and aren’t too fussy about which college or country you want to get into, then EDWISE might be a good choice. But for people like us who want to get into only the BEST university that isn’t on EDWISe’s list, then its better to do it yourself.
For those of you who want to be as adventerous as us,you can read our post on HOW TO ENROLL WITHOUT A STUDY ABROAD CONSULTANT.