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Our Philosophy

Over the last twenty years, HPA’s College Counseling Center has designed its own style of college counseling by adapting the finest practices in the profession to create a unique program that best serves our students and families.

The HPA college counseling program combines a student-centered philosophy with a high-access-to-counselor-program. Throughout the four years of high school--in class meetings, advisories, workshops, presentations and individual meetings--our counselors work with our students to make sure that they are educated in all aspects of the college planning process. Students are not simply told how to do things; they are walked through the process individually and encouraged to ask questions and offer their own opinions.


While most of our graduates say that they had ownership of the college application process, they will also happily admit that the College Counseling Center was open every period of the day and that they could call, text, or visit Mr. Kelsey and Mrs. Montgomery whenever they needed anything, including on evenings or weekends.

Students begin by exploring their own interests, talents and expectations and being fully engaged in the life of our school before journeying out to investigate the array of colleges that will match their expectations. The focus throughout this journey remains on the student: What learning environments will best suit your personality and goals? Will you or your future school be flexible enough if those qualities and interests were to change in the coming years?

While our students are taught to be responsible and encouraged to direct their own college search and application process, our experienced counselors work closely with each of them to make certain that key items are properly addressed:

  • The counselors have the opportunity to listen to a student and truly understand his or her college goals
  • Each student's college list matches his or her stated criteria
  • The family is included in the discussion
  • Specific programs, testing requirements, and application calendars are understood and followed
  • The application and essays present the student's story in an authentic and favorable manner

With this level of respect and care, our students learn to take responsibility for their own efforts, trust their own judgment, and chart their own success in life.

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