College Counseling Attends College Fine Arts Events, Visits Pennsylvania Area Schools

Associate Director of College Counseling Julie Carter recently returned from a trip to the Philadelphia area. While there she attended National Portfolio Day, an event held in cities across the U.S. to provide high school students with an opportunity to meet with representatives from a wide range of college art programs to receive valuable feedback and guidance their artistic portfolios before submitting with their college applications. Students are welcome to attend as early as ninth or tenth grade to meet with professionals, share their work, and discuss ways to strengthen their art in preparation for the college process.

She also attended the National Association for College Admissions Counseling’s Performing and Visual Arts College Fair, which is held in select locations throughout the U.S. each year. Over the three-hour fair, Ms. Carter spoke with representatives from more than 40 colleges and universities to gather information and to highlight our ESJ performing and visual arts programs and students.

In addition to the two arts events, Ms. Carter visited and met with admissions officers at ten campuses in the Philadelphia area: the University of Pennsylvania, Princeton University, Lafayette College, Lehigh University, Muhlenberg College, Swarthmore College, Villanova University, Bryn Mawr College, Haverford College, and University of the Arts.

“Experiencing these institutions in person and interacting with admissions staff and current students gave me a better sense of the setting, culture, and ethos of each school,” she said. “At the University of Pennsylvania, I heard about the focus on liberal arts and science shaped by founder Benjamin Franklin’s legacy of innovation, curiosity, and creativity. I learned that Lafayette College, a welcoming liberal arts college with an interdisciplinary curriculum, has been recognized as the #11 Engineering school. At Muhlenberg College, I was amazed by the vibrant, supportive, creative, and ambitious community, with strong academic programs within a liberal arts framework. Considering their fantastic facilities, accomplished faculty, and successful graduates I was surprised to learn that any admitted student has the option of majoring or taking courses within Theatre and Dance. Every faculty member and student I met was genuinely happy to be there!”

Ms. Carter added, “The honor code at Haverford College, a small liberal arts college of 1,290 students, reminded me a lot of the values we espouse here at Episcopal. ‘Trust and respect” permeate every aspect of life at Haverford.”

At Haverford, the majority of the faculty live in houses on campus, extending the sense of community and belonging beyond the classroom. Haverford is a part of a tri-college consortium (affectionately known as “Tri-Co”) with Swarthmore College and Bryn Mawr College. Swarthmore is a small liberal arts and engineering school, of about 1,600 students, known for facilitating discovery and fostering civic engagement. Bryn Mawr is a small liberal arts college, one of the Seven Sister women’s colleges, with academic partnerships in the Tri-Co and with the University of Pennsylvania and social partnerships with Haverford College.