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College Counseling Update – September 2019

College Counseling Update – September 2019

The college search and application process can be a challenging experience for students and their families. Our goal in the College Counseling Department at La Salle College High School is to educate your sons regarding the process, to support them in their efforts, and to assist students in identifying colleges and universities that match their academic abilities and will offer success in a suitable environment for continuing intellectual development. Finding the right college or university is about “fit”, therefore, we expect each student to play an active role in his college search and admission process.

Each of the College Counselors is responsible for one-third of the senior class for the upcoming school year, and one-third of the junior class for College Counseling beginning in January 2020. The alphabetic division of the Class of 2020 is:

Mrs. Maura Diehl
Associate Director of College Counseling
Last Names A-G

Mr. Gerard M. Brett
Director of College Counseling
Last names H-M

Mr. Jim Sawyer
Associate Director of College Counseling
Last names N-Z

Mrs. Katie Palopoli
College Counseling Assistant
(215) 402-4845

The College Counseling Department exists in addition to the Guidance Department. The guidance counselor will work with the seniors (Mrs. Sara Martin) and juniors (Mr. John McGranahan) with grade level academic and personal issues. One of the greatest strengths of our College Counseling Department is our ability to work as a team. Our collaborative efforts allow us to share insights about the process, the latest happenings in the field, and our students.

The world of college admissions changes each year. In order to bring clarity to the college process in general and the specific process here at La Salle College High School, we request that you attend our College Question and Answer Night for Parents of Seniors on Wednesday, September 11, 2019 at 7:00 pm in the Auditorium. Please complete the attached form to indicate your attendance at this meeting and list any questions you might have.  Our goal is to make the evening as informative as possible and as brief as possible given your many responsibilities. Parent Meeting RSVP & Question Form

In the meantime, we recommend that you become familiar with our page on the La Salle website,, paying special attention to the Application Process section. Our College Counseling page will be an invaluable resource. The content contained on this website is crucial to understanding the college search and application process. The link to Naviance, a useful and important college research tool, can be accessed through the Parent Portal.

Some important points to consider:

Students are strongly encouraged not to submit applications until after Friday, September 13, 2019. They may, however, begin, working on their applications. Due to the Drop/Add Cycle, transcripts are not considered official until after this date.

Common Application: All students are expected to use the Common Application which is accepted and preferred by close to 900 colleges and universities. Please visit the Application Process tab for a step by step overview of the process here at La Salle College High School. Students are expected to open a Common Application account before the school year begins. The first two Group Advisory classes will be dedicated to completing a large portion of the Common Application and to answering any questions students may have. If a college or university does not accept the Common Application, then the student should use the college’s own application.

The following three Pennsylvania colleges require students to create a college specific portal account and to input their own high school grades. In light of this, if you are applying to Penn State University, University of Pittsburgh, or Temple University you are strongly encouraged to apply using the college’s own application even though they are also members of the Common Application.

When applying to a college that is not a member of the Common Application you must use the college's own electronic application. 

Social Media: Parents of past graduates have found our social media sites to be an invaluable resource throughout the senior year. To keep you as informed as possible throughout the entire admissions process, these sites will provide information on dates and deadlines, college visits to La Salle, the latest in college admissions, and relevant articles on subjects of interest. We strongly encourage student and parents to sign up.

College Counseling Twitter

College Counseling Facebook

College Counseling Instagram 

College Visits: Last year La Salle hosted over 170 colleges and universities throughout the fall on our campus. Visits can be found at as well as in SCOIR.  Students must sign up in SCOIR. If a college visit occurs during a scheduled class, the student must have permission from their teacher before attending the visit. On an annual basis the College Counseling Department visits college campuses to meet with admission officers and attends state and national conferences regarding the college admission process.

SAT/ACT: Deadlines have passed for the August SAT and the September ACT.  The registration deadline for the October 5th SAT is September 6, 2019 with a late registration deadline of September 24, 2019. Students can register for the SAT at The registration deadline for the October 26th ACT is September 20, 2019 with a late registration deadline of October 4, 2019. Students can register for the ACT at www.act.orgIn all most all instances, both tests count for November 1st Early Action/Decision deadlines and all colleges look at both tests equally.


Service Academy Applications:
Any student who is applying to one of the United States Service Academies should see Mrs. Diehl by Friday, September 13, 2019 in order to ensure timely submission of materials.

Early Action/Early Decision: Any student planning to meet an official Early Action/Early Decision deadline (typically 11/1 or 11/15) must officially notify Mrs. Palopoli, in the College Counseling Center, by Monday, October 7, 2019. Counselors and teachers need enough time to write letters of recommendation and process materials to meet those early deadlines for 266 seniors.

College Financial Aid Night: La Salle College High School, will host the annual College Financial Aid Night, on Monday, September 23, 2019 at 7:00 pm. Bonnie Lee Behm, Director of Financial Assistance at Villanova University will present. Please visit the numerous financial aid and scholarship links available at

College Interview Day: Seniors will take place on Tuesday, October 1, 2019. Admission officers from approximately 50 colleges and universities will be on campus to conduct interviews with our seniors. Seniors will receive a list of attending college and universities in Group Advisory during the third week in September. The overwhelming positive feedback we have received yearly from our past students and college admission officers clearly indicates the value of this event.

NCAA Clearinghouse Eligibility: Any student interested in playing intercollegiate sports must meet NCAA Clearinghouse standards, file an electronic eligibility form with the NCAA at, and inform Mrs. Diehl. Please become familiar with the information and please note that the minimum core GPA for the Class of 2020 to participate in NCAA Division I sports is a 2.30. Questions can be directed to the athletic director, coaches, college and guidance counselors. 

Senior College Visit/Application/Essay Days: Seniors should take advantage of the three long weekends in October and November to make additional visits to colleges and to work on college applications and essays. There are no classes for all La Salle students Monday, September 30th, Monday, October 14th, and Friday, November 1st. In addition, seniors have no classes on Tuesday, October 15th and Wednesday, October 16th.

We can’t wait to get started!  This is a challenging and rewarding time in your son’s life and we are happy to play a part in it.

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