College Pete


With offices in Miami and Weston, FL (headquarters), our customized and integrated college admissions and funding counseling helps students find, get into and afford college!

We know that making a college list, completing multiple applications and marshalling the resources to afford a college education can be daunting, but it need not be.

We’ll hold you (and your child) by the hand, simplify and coach you through the entire college process with private guidance, admissions and funding services that support both student and parent.

About Peter Ratzan

Peter Ratzan is the owner/operator of College Funding Specialists, Inc., a boutique college guidance firm that he founded in 2007. He writes a weekly college planning column, is the author of two books on the business of higher education and his ‘Thick Envelope Magic’, College Admissions and Application curriculum for rising 12th graders is in its 7th edition. Peter is also a frequent lecturer on the state of higher education today, and a nationally-recognized expert in making college affordable for ‘forgotten’ middle class families.

Peter serves as a Mentor and a Member of the Corporate Council for Take Stock in Children, a mentoring program for at-risk youth. He is also a former Advisory Board Member for the Alexander Muss High School in Israel and has served for 7 years as a Coach and Board member for Weston Area Little League.

Peter has been helping students prepare for college for more than two decades, first as a high school social studies teacher at Ransom Everglades School in Miami (his alma mater), as a guidance counselor to 12th grade students at Temple Beth Sholom in Miami Beach and since 2007 as the owner/operator of College Funding Specialists, Inc.

He holds a bachelor’s degree from Tufts University in Medford, MA and an MA/MBA from George Washington University in Washington, DC. Peter is also a member of the Higher Education Consultants Association and of the American College Funding Association. He lives in Weston, FL with his wife and two children – and when he’s not reading his students’ essays or preparing their parents’ financial aid applications, he enjoys playing tennis on Saturdays and rooting for his hometown Dolphins on Sundays (most of the time).

About Jill Ratzan

Jill S. Ratzan is both Peter’s business partner (and his better half). She is a proven business builder, communicator and problem solver who has hired, developed and coached hundreds of employees and entrepreneurs on multiple continents. She has co-written two books on higher education and is currently working on a third. She was also the founder and principal of Weston Yoga, Weston Florida’s first yoga school. Prior to opening the studio, Jill spent 12 years with Discovery Communications (Discovery Channel, TLC, Animal Planet) where she was responsible for human resources strategy, employee communications and employee development for Discovery’s US and International. She is qualified to administer and interpret multiple interest and personality assessments including:

  • The Birkman Method, a scientifically developed, multi-dimensional assessment that is used to predict work satisfaction across situations
  • The Myers Briggs Type Indicator, a personality assessment that categorizes behavior based on preferences and can be a reliable guide for major choice and career selection

Jill received her B.A. in sociology from Tufts University (where she and Peter met) and her MBA from American University where she was a Graduate Teaching Fellow with a concentration in Human Resources/Organizational Design. And though she played competitively until her first semester of college, she does NOT enjoy playing tennis on Saturdays, and she prefers the pre-game tailgate to actually watching the Dolphins on Sundays (which makes Peter crazy).