Match is the most important factor in the college search process. The best school for one student is not necessarily the best school for another. Students can reasonably try to improve themselves over time (e.g., take rigorous courses, earn good grades, learn to write well) so that postsecondary institutions that they believe would be a good match for them will view the student as a good match as well.
Parents, counselors, and educational consultants serve prospective students best by serving as a guide or mentor to the student during the college search process. Since determining the match is primarily up to the student, the student needs to take ownership of the college search process.