College Counseling and Advocacy

The Hill College Advantage
As is always the case in life, choosing one path leads to another, so it is not surprising that choosing a high school greatly affects a high school student’s chances of being admitted to a college of each student’s choosing.  What follows is a brief overview of what distinguishes St. Joseph Hill Academy from others, to ensure successful college admissions for our students, academic achievement in college – and ultimately, career success for our graduates.

The Hill Class of 2021 has received college acceptances to an array of incredible colleges and universities nationwide so far. The 141 students have received $59.2 million in academic scholarships and 213 unique college and university acceptances. This is an extraordinary number given the class size. Seventeen students have made commitments to accelerated programs in Medicine, Occupational Therapy, Pharmacy, Physical Therapy, and Physician Assistant. Seven students have made commitments to accelerated programs in Business, Engineering, Journalism, and Law. One student accepted a Division I Swimming scholarship to Southern Connecticut State. 

The graphic below represents a sampling of where the Hill Class of 2021 was accepted.

College Acceptances

College Counseling and Advocacy
Our college guidance begins in freshman year, with group orientation sessions with the Director of College Counseling.  We collect biographical information from each family and gain early insights into the special circumstances, strengths, and talents of each student.

We offer personalized student and family college guidance in junior year.  All students are programmed for College Guidance where they work on career searches/development, college resume writing, essay preparation; they also receive training on Naviance.  In addition, the College Counseling team meets with each student (with their parents) to offer advice concerning college selections, visits, interviews, and optimum standardized testing schedules.  Special scholarships (ethnic and financial service, athletic, music, theatre and art), enrichment and pre-college programs are identified early for each student. Due to Covid-19, these meetings took place virtually in 2020. We anticipate a mix of both in-person and virtual opportunities in the 2021. 

More than 50 colleges visit our campus in the fall and spring to meet with our students individually, not in a college fair setting.  They range in competitiveness (e.g., Barnard, NYU, Vassar) and geographical distance (University of Notre Dame (IN), Vanderbilt (TN), University of Miami (FLA), Catholic University, and American University (DC), Boston University and Northeastern University (MA), and numerous colleges from the tri-state area.  Most of the visitors are the decision-makers for these colleges (the representatives who will read our applications) and they often remark how poised and well-prepared our students are during these sessions—typically Hill.  Though in-person meetings will not be possible this fall, we are committed to ensuring Hill students continue to receive individualized attention from renowned colleges and universities virtually. 

The College Counseling team personally advises each student based upon her individual profile and no preferential treatment is given to a student on the basis of GPA.  The team advocates for each Hill senior equally throughout the process.  In senior year, all students are also programmed for College Guidance to aid them with individual questions during the college application process.
Scholarship and Financial Aid Assistance
We host a financial aid seminar for all senior students and the College Counseling team distributes detailed scholarship information to the senior students throughout the year.  Advocacy in pursuing scholarships for our students yields great results for our students. In the past three years, every senior received academic merit scholarship, and the total figures for each class were: (Class of 2019—121 graduates—$42.5 million dollars), (Class of 2020—119 graduates—$42.3 million dollars) and Class of 2021—141 graduates—$59.2 million dollars).

Kerry S. Sullivan ‘81, Director of College Counseling

Director of College Counseling