Big CC News: College Confidential Joins Hobsons

Exciting news! College Confidential is joining forces with Hobsons, an international company focused on education.

Why Do This? Since 2001, CC has been a self-financed, shoestring operation. We have accomplished a lot with few resources, but we also want to deliver a much better experience for our members. We know that we can offer a far more robust college search function, for example. We have built decent infrastructure - I think we deliver our pages quickly and reliably for the most part. But, it’s not perfect - we had a multi-hour outage in late March leading up to notification day. Faced with needing to make more investments in CC than we had the resources for, we evaluated a variety of options. After an extensive evaluation process we decided to become part of Hobsons.

Why Hobsons?. Hobsons brings a lot more to the table than financing. They own the biggest college data database available - we weren’t able to afford to license this data before. Now, we’ll be able to build out a good College Search section and enhance other site features with this data. More importantly, they have very broad reach among college-bound students, guidance counselors, and college students. They understand CC’s market, and they also understand the value that CC brings to its members. We rejected several proposed partnerships with companies that we didn’t think shared our values or understood the “CC magic.”

What Will Change at CC?. Don’t expect big changes anytime soon. Our “College Confidential” brand won’t change. Our community won’t change. Over time, though, I expect some significant enhancements in site functionality. The things on my list include:

  • updating the design and content on CC’s information site at [College</a> Admissions, Search, and Financial Aid Help from College Confidential](<a href=“”>
  • improving the visual design of the forums
  • improving and adding new special features like our College Visit Reports and Stats Profiles
  • more relevant ads (We rely on Google for most of our ads. Because Google “reads” the page before delivering the ad, they are often OK, but sometimes we get an inordinate number of cheesy distance learning and off-brand med school ads. Hobsons will help us deliver better quality ads.)

What about Roger, Dave, and Sally? I’m joining Hobsons full time, with CC being my sole responsibility. This will give me more time here in the forums, and give me the resources to work more quickly on new site functionality. Dave and Sally will also continue to be part of CC and Hobsons, and we may see more of them in the forums. What was CC’s college counseling business will move to a new entity, [College</a> Karma](<a href=“”> That will be directed by Dave and Sally and will include all the CC associate counselors. Susan Taub’s unique and popular theater and musical theater counseling is part of College Karma, too.

As in any community, it’s the members that make it work. Thanks for everyone’s participation here - we couldn’t do it without our members! (Or our great mod crew!)

In 2001, we started CC with the objective of making it the best free resource for college information on the Web. We’ve made great progress in that direction with limited resources, and we’re going to kick things into high gear as part of Hobsons.


I’ll be tied up for a while, but I’ll try to pop back in later to answer any questions.

Interesting news. This should provide some helpful synergy for the free online forums.

What sort of changes are you planning for the forums? Or is it too soon to tell? Are we to take it then, that the fairly simplistic layout so far has been due to performance reasons, and not for some egalitarian aspirations of equality? Will you still maintain oversight of the site, or will Hobsons have ultimate authority.

Are we getting a completely revamped website sometime in the near future? :slight_smile:

No immediate changes, DCforMe, but we hope to roll out new features more quickly than we have been able to in the past. Our Visits section, for example, has some great content but needs a more user-friendly and attractive design.

I’ll continue to manage the site and, I hope, actually spend more time since I won’t have to wear fifteen different hats as in the past.

Tetrisfan, improvements are likely to be incremental. The first thing I’d like to do is enhance our College Search section on the www site (which only has articles now) with a robust college search application.

Is something similar to PR’s Counselor-O-Matic on the cards?

Very interesting news. Hobsons also owns Naviance - it would be nice to see some kind of connection.

Very interesting news. I would say “don’t fix what’s not broken”, but there are a few things that could be fixed about CC. Most of it, however, is pretty darn good. Why would we keep coming back if it wasn’t? :wink:


I’m not really too familiar with Hobsons, so can anyone explain to me what it does?

[Hobsons</a> U.S. Acquires Naviance | Business Wire | Find Articles at](<a href=“]Hobsons”>

[College</a> Enrollment System - Enrollment Management Services - Hobsons](<a href=“]College”>

I’ve been a CCer since 2005 and have always enjoyed CC’s classic, old-school look of the site. Well, it’s changing for the better so I’m happy. I’m looking forward to all this. Congratulations!

I like CC’s visual design.

What will happen to the mods? No changes, I hope.


Wow. Hobsons bought Naviance and CC?? Please keep us posted. This will be interesting…

Congratulations! It sounds like a good deal for the CC owners/leaders and I’m sure we will all adapt to any changes.

Sounds like great news, but please leave the forum layout relatively unchanged! I think the current setup works well and doesn’t need to be completely revamped or anything.

jym…FYI: Hobsons acquired Naviance a year ago and so that is not new news. The partnership with CC is new, however.