An independent K-12 school on a beautiful wooded campus, 3 miles from Washington, DC

Process & Philosophy

One-on-one college counseling work begins in the middle of junior year as students meet individually with one of our college counselors. Students are encouraged to take charge of their own search, using professional advice from us and input from their families. Many juniors visit colleges and universities over spring break and during the summer; students begin filing applications in the fall of their senior year.

While we do not meet individually with students before the junior year, we stress that they challenge themselves and do well in class. We also strongly encourage all students to engage in activities they enjoy and find meaningful. We provide information about standardized testing where relevant, but we purposefully allow our 9th and 10th graders the opportunity to do their best work without thinking about the college process.

Planning and preparing are essential, but we also want students to figure out what is truly important to them and to find their authentic voices. Students learn how to advocate for themselves (while we simultaneously advocate for them) as they plan their lives beyond Potomac. Students who fully engage and own their search process are more likely to feel empowered and motivated throughout the application cycle.

The college admission scene is complex and constantly changing, but through close relationships with many admission officers around the country, Potomac’s college counselors are well prepared to guide students and parents. We are candid in our advice about admission selectivity, college costs and other details of the college admission process. We introduce students to the hundreds of colleges and universities in the United States and abroad where we know students are happy and successful.

In addition to the information available on this website, we send timely and detailed information to students and/or parents as we approach important milestones through the process.