The college counseling program guides students in their consideration of college and career plans. During students’ junior and senior years, the college counselors work with students, individually and in groups, to move from the general to the specific in the college admissions process. Students are guided in selecting an appropriate range of college choices, completing the admissions process at those schools, and, ultimately, selecting which institution to attend. The college application and admission process is clearly important for students in a college preparatory school. The SSM college counselors are committed to helping students successfully complete this process.
In addition to the direct assistance of the college counselors, students have access to a college admissions library with material from more than 1,500 institutions, computer software programs for test preparation, and financial aid information. The college counselors are available for conferences during Fall and Winter Family Weekends, and for individual appointments.
During the latter part of winter term, all students meet with the college counselors to discuss the college admissions process in general terms. The variety of institutions available, admissions criteria and standards, the relative importance of class rank and standardized (SAT/ACT) testing scores, sources of information, and initial career objectives are among the topics considered.
During the spring term of the junior year, each student will meet with his or her college counselor to prepare a preliminary list of colleges. Students, and parents, are encouraged to make personal visits to these institutions during the School’s summer vacation. Students are also encouraged to meet with college admission representatives, who visit the campus throughout the year.
In the senior year, the initial emphasis is on narrowing a student’s list of college choices in preparation for the application process itself. Each student’s college counselor oversees the application process in an effort to ensure that all necessary materials are prepared and forwarded at the appropriate time. This is often a time-consuming endeavor for both the student and the college counselor and one which may require numerous appointments. Assistance is also provided in scheduling college visits during Fall Break as well as admission interviews with area representatives. Students also meet with college admission representatives who visit Shattuck-St. Mary’s during the fall, winter and spring terms.