Mark Lewis


Mark Lewis was born and raised in Los Angeles, California and earned degrees from Harvard University and the University of California. While attending those universities he served in admissions.

At age thirty-two, Lewis returned to school attending El Camino Community College and graduated from there with honors, acquiring $9000 in scholarships to help finance his education as he transferred to UC Berkeley.

At Berkeley, he studied History and Public Policy and became a CalSo Counselor, guiding students with class selection during summer programs. To further his admissions knowledge, Lewis was selected to join the Admissions, Enrollment and Preparatory Education Committee setting local policy following Proposition 209. In that capacity, they hired staff, reviewed admissions applications, implemented the 4% plan and “normed” the work of admissions specialists to ensure continuity. As an Alumni Scholar, Lewis established the Early Childhood Reading Program to teach small children to read; partnering with the library, children earned credits for reading books, entitling them to fun activities on campus. Lewis, as a Ronald E. McNair Scholar, studied under Pulitzer Prize winning author Leon Litwack. Lewis, based on his public service, was selected as a Public Policy and International Affairs Fellow, which funded tuition for a Master’s Degree at Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government.

At Harvard, Lewis served on the Admissions Committee for all Kennedy School of Government graduate programs. Lewis also served on the inaugural College Opportunity and Career Helps (COACH) program, assisting students at a local vocational school with their latent college aspirations. In that capacity, students not considered college bound, were mentored through the college selection, college application and financial aid process. Prior to the program, students did not apply to the Massachusetts scholarship program that fully-funded a four-year degree at a state school. That first year, six students received the scholarship and went to college tuition free. Lewis utilized these skills in volunteering with the Ten Point Coalition tutoring at-risk youth and encouraging them to consider college as an option to change their life.

With this experience, Lewis established Educational Attainment Services to provide ethical college admissions advising and support families through the maze of college admissions. He is best known for helping students beat the odds and gain admissions to colleges they were told were beyond their reach.

Mr. Lewis started assisting family, friends, church members and co-workers at their request when they saw his Harvard and UC Berkeley degrees. He took that seed and developed it into a thriving college admissions advisory group. With an office in Silicon Beach, located in a former bank building, he utilizes a space that includes the former bank vault, where he unlocks the mysteries of the college admissions process. He’s been interviewed on CBS 2 News in Los Angeles and has clients throughout the United States. In addition, he has clients from China, Singapore, Taiwan, Brazil, Zimbabwe and Germany seeking ethical college advising.


Affording and Surviving College describes a family’s journey through the college process and examines three siblings’ experience with three separate results: success, mediocre results and complete failure. The book explains the reasons behind each success and failure and then provides a plan for future families to create their own path to college success without going broke.


Learn how to navigate the college admissions process and afford it with integrity.


Making College Accessible and Affordable for Families

  • How starting early matters when funding a college education – there are full-ride scholarships even for 7th graders. Every year a family goes forward without knowledge is like losing money along the way. The lack of knowledge costs money when applying to college.
  • You can make mistakes that you can never recover from if you get bad advice.
  • The sticker price of a college is not necessarily the cost to the consumer – shop for fit, not sticker price. The better the fit, the more likely you will get admitted and receive money.
  • Ignore the colleges that say they don’t give merit scholarships.
  • Applying Early Decision will likely put you in the worst possible position to receive college funding.
  • Your high school counselor is likely giving you poor advice because she is considering the entire student body and is not your personal advocate.
  • Need-based financial aid should not be the focus because it would still leave a family short on financing college. Federal financial aid dollars won’t cover the cost of a private college.
  • There are concrete steps a family can make to better position their child for college.
  • What mistakes not to specifically make, what specific steps should you intentionally take, what to prioritize if you want your child to get into a great school and how to make it affordable.