Excellence in college counseling has long been a hallmark of an education for the girls at Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart. The process can start as early as preschool if parents are interested in opening the discussion. By ninth grade students begin to take advantage of the special insights and guidance provided by Director of College Counseling Robyn Henry.
Even the summer is a bustling time in Henry’s office. She has been meeting with families, sitting down individually with students, reading college essays, and providing feedback.
“Our students are busy over the summer: some are out of the country, some are working, some are at study programs, and many are doing service projects,” she explained. “But they are engaged in college planning, too. Whether they attend an Ivy League, a large research institute, or a small liberal arts school, 100 percent of our young women go to college.”
Henry has only been with Stuart for a few months but already feels right at home. It’s a short drive from the admission office at Princeton University, where she spent the last eight years. Henry earned her bachelor’s in African-American studies at the University of Pennsylvania and a master’s in higher education from Teacher’s College at Columbia University. She worked in student life and student activities before moving into admission at Stevens Institute of Technology prior to Princeton.
“Working in college admissions gave me an amazing opportunity to review applications and meet thousands of students and families,” Henry said. “But I missed working one-to-one. Here, I’m able to use my experience navigating the college process to help our young women pursue their college dreams.”
Henry introduces students and parents to the college process through Roadmap to College evenings starting in middle school, so families know what to expect in each grade leading up to senior year. In high school Henry really gets to know the girls and learn about their passions and academic interests. Junior year she meets one-to-one with students and their parents to help families work together to further those passions through course selection and activities.
In 11th grade the conversation turns to what students are looking for in a school. With more than 3,000 choices, considerations such as size, geography, type of college, and academic majors are important discussions to assure a good fit.
Senior year Henry assists students with applications and essays and helps them navigate and stay organized through the college application process.
“Our young women are so well prepared for college, on every level, from academics to extra-curricular, to the community — Stuart girls leave here with the confidence they can change the world,” Henry noted. “This is an amazing school that attracts high-caliber students. It’s a pleasure to work with them and their families, and to watch their dreams become reality.”
Stuart, an all-girls, K-12 school with a co-ed preschool, prepares young women for lives of exceptional leadership and service through a challenging and innovative curriculum, superb teaching, and close attention to each girl’s personal development.
Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, 1200 Stuart Road, Princeton. 609-921-2330. www.stuartschool.org.