Biography of Don Betterton
Principal, Betterton College Planning and BCP Advisors
Upon retiring from Princeton
in 2006, Don decided to put his extensive knowledge to good use by starting a
business – Betterton College Planning – that guides families through the
perplexing, yet crucially important college-going process. In his eleven years as an independent counselor,
Don has worked with over 350 students, both in the US and in China. Although his clients span a wide range of
ability and college aspirations, he most often deals with above average students
seeking to enroll at a competitive college.
Don served on
Princeton's admission committee for three decades and is familiar with college
admissions from policy level discussions to the evaluation
of student credentials. He has done hundreds of individual and group counseling
sessions on how a student should prepare both inside and outside the classroom
to a competitive college. As an independent college counselor, he developed the BCP Evaluator™ system,
the preeminent method for organizing a college list that realistically projects
a student’s admission chances. The BCP Evaluator™ used in the US has a
companion system, the BCP Advisors China Evaluator™ that is used
In his role as director of
financial aid, Don was the architect of Princeton’s innovative"no loan” program and gained
recognition as a national leader in his profession. His range of knowledge is
extensive, including all aspects of both need-based and merit aid.
Don has been a trustee of the
College Board and was honored by being named to the College Scholarship Service
Hall of Fame. He served on the policy committee of the Council of Ivy Group
Presidents. He is a member of the NACAC,
IECA, and International ACAC college counseling associations. He serves on the advisory boards of the
National Institute of Certified College Planners, SimpleTuition, ePrep, and the
Princeton ROTC Association. Don is also the author of three books including Alma Mater – Unusual stories and little known
facts from America’s college campuses.
In recognition of his service to
Princeton, Don received the Alumni Council Service Award, the Bressler Award
for contributions to Princeton athletics, and was named an honorary member of
the classes of 1960 and 2005.
Don, a former regional soccer
All-American, has had a long-time involvement with Princeton soccer. Up until 2006 he was an assistant coach of
the men’s varsity squad. Before his work with the men’s team, he founded the
women’s program in 1977. Don is a magna cum laude graduate of Dartmouth
and has a M.A. from Rutgers. Prior to coming to Princeton, Don served on active
duty as a U.S. Naval Aviator, eventually retiring with the rank of Captain. While on active duty, he was an assistant
professor of Naval Science at Princeton.