Dyllen Nellis is the Founder of Dyllen’s College Essay Advice, an award-winning online course where Dyllen empowers students to discover their sense of self and effectively communicate their personal values, experiences, and potential in well-crafted college essays. In addition to being a young entrepreneur, Dyllen is an undergraduate student at Stanford University.
Today, Dyllen joins the show to discuss what inspired her to launch her business and the resources that helped her curate her course, the importance of highlighting the growth journey in a college essay, and why having a commitment mindset is so critical to success as an entrepreneur.
00:59 – Jonathan introduces today’s guest, Dyllen Nellis, who joins the show to share her earliest memories of money, the inspiration to launch Dyllen’s College Essay Advice and her journey of self-growth
08:42 – Resources that helped Dyllen curate her course
10:24 – Why a college essay is critical to getting accepted
13:15 – The biggest fears of college applicants and how parents can help
16:45 – Two pieces of advice Dyllen would give to college applicants and one thing to not worry about at all
20:10 – Dyllen’s entrepreneurial journey
24:03 – Revamping and restructuring her course and the biggest challenges she’s faced as a young entrepreneur
30:25 – Having the entrepreneurial mindset of commitment
32:58 – What’s next for Dyllen
36:00 – Another resource that has been critical to Dyllen’s success
36:57 – The last thing Dyllen changed her mind about and one thing that he would like people to know about her
40:40 – Jonathan thanks Dyllen for joining the show and let’s listeners know where to connect with her and learn more about Dyllen’s College Essay Advice
“It’s really funny, the first thing I ever ‘innovated’ was this thing called a ‘Joy Leaf,’ where I walked outside of my house and there was a leaf on the floor from our tree. And I took it and painted the word, ‘Joy’ on it and I thought, ‘This is my product and I’m going to put it in all of my neighbor’s mailboxes so that they will feel more joy.’ I was trying to help people in that way.” (03:27)
“For me, it was an experience of self-growth. It was a whole journey that I went through, and I learned about myself in ways that I never thought was possible.” (07:32)
“There are always going to be students who have the same exact scores as you, the same activities as you, the same achievements as you, and some people who are way better than you in all those categories. But nobody has your specific story.” (11:38)
“And it’s something that, I feel, students have the most control over, especially when they reach the beginning of their senior year. They’re thinking, ‘Oh no. Am I good enough? I’ve done all these things, but I don’t know if it’s enough to get into these schools.’ Ok, well those things that happened, that’s in the past. Unfortunately, you cannot change those things. But you have the control and the power to write your college essays and make them amazing.” (12:40)
“I learned for myself that the story is not the main experience or that challenge that you faced. Sure, that can be your starting point, but that’s not the main story. The main story is your transformation. It is the growth journey that you went through to unlearn those false beliefs, to become a better person, to strengthen your skills. All the things you learned along the way, that is the story.” (18:48)
“If you have a passion or idea, it’s one thing to have that idea; it’s another thing to do it. The ‘doing it’ part is a lot of work. And so, if someone wants to do that, they better be committed. They better be fully committed to doing that work and...