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Ann S. Powell Office of College Counseling


Our Philosophy

Nansemond-Suffolk Academy is committed to providing a comprehensive program to students and families in preparation for the college search and selection process. Each family has the opportunity to meet individually with a college counselor to discuss the student’s aspirations and strategies, in addition to engaging in a series of workshops and programs that cover a range of topics relevant to all aspects of the college or university experience.

Our goals are:
  • to find the right “fit,” academically and socially, for our students.
  • to stress that the college admissions process should be a time when the student grows and learns more about him or herself.
  • to advise students on how to present themselves well to colleges.

List of 4 items.

  • Freshman Year

    • Study hard and make connections with your teachers.
    • Self-reflection is key. Start to assess your priorities and aspirations. What subjects do you most enjoy? What careers are you intrigued by?
    • Use Naviance to research summer enrichment programs.
    Freshman/sophomore College Counseling Outlook Meeting in the fall. College Financial Aid Information Session in the fall.
  • Sophomore Year

    • All sophomores will take the PSAT administered by NSA in October.
    • Beginning with sophomore year, you should push yourself academically in your course selection. Take honors and advanced placement courses that interest you and that will challenge you appropriately.
    • Begin to self-educate. Buy or borrow a college guidebook.
    • Visit colleges when convenient, not to make a decision, but to learn.
    • Use Naviance to research summer enrichment programs.
    Freshman/Sophomore College Counseling Outlook Meeting in the fall, College Financial Aid Information Session in the fall.
  • Junior Year

    First Trimester/Second Trimester
    • All juniors will take the PSAT administered by NSA in October.
    • Consider taking the SAT Subject tests in November, especially if you are interested in taking Language with Listening.
    • Start exploring and using Naviance as a web-based research tool to look for colleges and careers of interest.
    • Attend local college fairs and information sessions. Visit colleges when convenient.
    • Meet college representatives at NSA and at local functions.
    Junior College Counseling Outlook Meeting, College Financial Aid Information Session

    Second Trimester/Third Trimester
    • Formalize a standardized testing plan. Prepare and register for either the ACT or the SAT. If taking SAT Subject Tests, register for May or June test dates.
    • Meet with your designated college counselor for a one-on-one meeting and a family conference.
    • Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation for college applications and provide them with a Brag Sheet.
    • Review college guides, make a preliminary list of colleges and plan itinerary for spring break and summer college visits. Research and apply for scholarships.
    • Meet college representatives at NSA and at local functions.
    Junior College Admissions Panel Night, Every Junior meets individually with their college counselor, Every Junior family meets with their college counselor
  • Senior Year

    Summer of Rising Senior Year
    • Review results of standardized tests and register and prepare for fall retakes of standardized tests if necessary.
    • Continue to visit colleges and follow-up with specific research on priorities you have identified, such as academics, athletics and financial aid.
    • Start looking at college applications, making note of varying application requirements and deadlines.
    • Research and apply for scholarships.
    • Draft college essays.
    • Keep your college counselor informed about your search and application process.
    College Counseling Application/Essay Workshops in August, Senior College Counseling Outlook Night

    Fall of Senior Year
    • Use Naviance to coordinate where you will be applying.
    • Retake standardized tests, if necessary.
    • Meet college representatives at NSA and at local functions.
    • Attend one-on-one conference with your college counselor to confirm college choices.
    • Make note of all application forms and deadlines and continue drafting essays.
    • Visit colleges as necessary. Students may miss up to two days of school to visit colleges, but only if they complete a Planned Absence Form.
    • If applying early action or early decision, inform your college counselor via Naviance and apply by the college deadline.
    By mid-October, every senior will have met with their college counselor at least once.

    November to January of Senior Year
    • Confirm a final list of colleges, and list these colleges in Naviance by the time you return from winter break.
    • Submit drafts of essays to your college counselor for review.
    • Keep track of deadlines. Most college deadlines fall from early December to early February.
    • Early admissions results are available in mid-December. Work on regular decision applications before receiving these results.
    • Submit FAFSA online before February 1. Submit accompanying financial aid forms directly to colleges as necessary. Contact Financial Aid offices with questions.
    • Notify the the Ann S. Powell Office of College Counseling about admission decisions and scholarships.
    College Financial Aid Information Meeting in the fall

    Spring of Senior Year
    • Take AP exams. All students enrolled in an AP course must take the exam.
    • If applicable, research what AP results may help you earn credit and/or placement at the college to which you enroll. Send AP results to that college through College Board.
    • You will receive all admissions decisions by April 1. Inform the Office of College Counseling about your results.
    • Adhere to the May 1 reply deadline for college admission.
    • Consider pursuing a wait list if appropriate.
    Transitioning to College Workshop for seniors

College Counseling Staff

List of 3 members.

  • Photo of Mary Hunter Hardison

    Mary Hunter Hardison 

    Director of College Counseling
    757.539.8789 ext. 3315
  • Photo of Karen Del Vecchio

    Karen Del Vecchio 

    Associate Director of College Counseling
    757.539.8789 ext. 3344
  • Photo of Carrie Meadors

    Carrie Meadors 

    757.539.8789 ext. 3329
Nansemond-Suffolk Academy is a coeducational, college preparatory private school located in Suffolk, VA. Pre-kindergarten - Grade 12.