The College Counseling Experience

Boarding school may be a guaranteed path to self-discovery, character development, and lifelong friendships, but one of the most concrete outcomes is admission to the college or university that’s right for you. Getting that coveted acceptance letter is more competitive than ever—which means college counseling plays an essential role in helping you to navigate the increasingly complex college search and application process.

Mike Conklin, Director of College Counseling

9th Grade

This is an opportune time to begin the process of self-discovery. You will be encouraged to immerse yourself in the range of academic, extracurricular, and social opportunities our school offers as you get to know who you are and what interests you most.

We will help you develop self-awareness and self-management skills that will, when the time comes, support you through the college search process. For those who are ready to engage, the Office of College Counseling will host optional programming that is open to students of all grade levels.

10th Grade

You’ll continue to develop your self-awareness, work on self-management, learn to manage stress and navigate relationships with others, and refine your academic skills. You’ll also grow to understand your own learning style and to articulate your strengths and weaknesses. This is the year when you will be paired with a specific college counselor.

You’ll take the baseline SAT or ACT test and meet with Revolution Prep for an overview of our comprehensive test prep program.

The Office of College Counseling will meet with the 10th grade as a class multiple times to frame expectations for the college search, and your college counselor will also meet with you to review your transcript and help you envision an academic plan for the next two years.

11th Grade

You’ll continue to refine your academic skills and discuss your interests and goals with your college counselor in order to define “best fit” and produce a prospective college list. You’ll discuss the list with your family and plan spring and summer visits to colleges and universities.

You’ll participate in a mock admission exercise and a weekly college counseling seminar in the spring term, during which you and your counselor will review best practices for preparing your preliminary application materials.

You’ll also receive professional personalized SAT or ACT tutoring (free of charge to your family) and sit for your first SAT or ACT.

12th Grade

You’ll have the opportunity to meet with admission officers from more than 70 colleges and universities who will visit the Mercersburg campus, virtually or in person.

You’ll continue to work with your college counselor to understand college fit and match. Then you’ll finalize the list of colleges to which you plan to apply and complete the application process with their support. Your counselor will review your applications and essays before you submit them. Then you’ll wait to hear the results!