Advanced Studies Program students arrive on the St. Paul’s campus shortly after completing their junior year of high school, primed for their senior year and the college application process. To help students prepare for this process, ASP incorporates a college counseling program into the summer schedule. The program is run by two counselors and includes one-on-one meetings with students, weekly college counseling workshops, and a college fair that draws representatives from over fifty of the best colleges and universities in the country.

While some ASP students have just begun to think about their post-high school options, others have been on multiple college visits and are eager to refine their existing college lists. Recognizing the personal nature of the process, counseling is individualized and the counselors encourage students to sign up for a meeting regardless of where they are in the college search. Consultation includes advice on which standardized tests to take, whom to ask for college recommendations, identifying schools to visit, and creating a balanced list of colleges and universities to consider.

The ASP’s college counselors encourage students to identify factors important to them in the college search:  city versus rural campus setting; academic offerings; available majors; availability of financial aid; small versus large student enrollment; extracurricular offerings; and off-campus programs, among other considerations.

Some students need help thinking about college majors, while others want to discuss their chances of getting into a specific school. The counselors strive to emphasize the importance of finding schools that are a good fit for students, academically and socially, and to offer suggestions for staying organized during the college search and application processes.

Over the course of the ASP, the college counselors host a series of one-hour workshops. These optional evening presentations are usually attended by one-third to one-half of the ASP student body and provide an opportunity for the counselors to explain in greater depth some of the important aspects of the college process. Topics discussed include the common application, early action versus early decision, the college visit and the college interview, and standardized testing.

The mission of the ASP college counselors is to break down the college process into manageable steps and to demystify what can be an overwhelming process. Additionally, an overarching goal of the college counseling program is to ensure that students return to their high schools with a greater degree of clarity and confidence in their personal college search and application process.

One of the highlights of the ASP and its college counseling programs is College Day, when students and families attend a college fair, informational sessions with college representatives, and a financial aid workshop. To prepare the students and parents for the day, the college counselors host admissions representatives prior to the college fair to give students and parents an inside look at the college admissions process. Due to the reputations of ASP and the caliber of ASP students, the college fair typically brings in between 60-65 representatives of some of the best colleges in the country, giving ASP students and their parents exclusive access to their expertise. This year College Day will be held on Saturday, July 18, 2020.

Classes are shortened, a buffet lunch is held, and information sessions, including an open browsing period, are offered by the admissions officers. The day is concluded with the financial aid information session. Click here to see a list of past participating colleges and universities.


List of 2 members.

  • Photo of Grant Edwards

    Grant Edwards 

    Co-Director of ASP College Counseling
  • Carly Stafford 

    Co-Director of ASP College Counseling

What the College Reps Are Saying

"ASP is a wonderful program that provides college access to students who otherwise would not have this opportunity."
– Vernon Castillo, Union College

"I enjoy attending this fair. The students are well-prepared with great questions. The college fair and information sessions both provide quality time for engaging conversations."
– Cynthia Williams, Ithaca College

"This is a unique opportunity to have meaningful interactions with top students, many of whom we wouldn't otherwise meet. I appreciate having time to talk about each student's interests and goals and to help them learn whether my college would be a good fit. I look forward to this event every year!"
– Lauren Dennis, Wellesley College

"What a great opportunity to meet so many smart and engaged students all in one place!"
– Anonymous

"The students that the ASP produces are exactly what we're looking for!"
– Anonymous