School & College Counseling

Program Overview

The Academy of Notre Dame emphasizes a close working relationship between students and faculty to educate the “whole person for life.”  The size of our school enables us to get to know each student well and the continuity we offer during the four years of high school fosters the development of relationships with individual students. This facilitates our ability to provide individualized advice regarding course selection, college search and career considerations.  Our counselors are also in the classroom offering a developmental guidance program appropriate for each grade level.

Freshmen Success

Our Freshman Success Program gives students the skills and confidence they need for the transition to high school. The School Counselors work with freshmen and teachers around study skills, setting goals, healthy coping behaviors and help in feeling at home in their new surroundings. During the freshmen grade level seminar sessions, Guidance will strengthen and support the skills the freshman teachers are working on in their classroom each month as part of the Freshman Success Program. Skills such as listening, time management, organization, note taking and study strategies are reviewed and learning styles are evaluated to best find strategies that work for each student.

Wellness Seminar Program

To enhance our mission and “teach them what they need to know for life,” students in all grade levels take a weekly seminar course facilitated by the Upper School School Counselor and Health faculty. These classes cover a wide range of topics specific to each grade and focus on a range of topics. These topics are addressed from several perspectives: social-emotional, spiritual, and physical health. Topics such as stress management, spirituality, relationships and identity, and the impact of social media are introduced and discussed. A grade appropriate Naviance curriculum is used to explore learning style, personality, career interest and college exploration. 


Naviance is our career and college information website that each student uses during their time here. Freshman year is about learning more about who you are, what your strengths and learning styles are.  Assessments are completed and results are discussed. Sophomore year begins to look more at careers that align with student interest while junior year expands to careers and related majors as we begin the college process.  Senior year, students are very familiar with the system and will  use Naviance to apply for college, manage letters of recommendation, and transcript requests, along with having a resume built using their input from the past four years of Naviance use.  

College Counseling

Every student receives over 100 hours of college and career services in small groups and one-on-one.  All students are assigned to a school counselor as they enter the Academy and will remain with this counselor for the four years. This continuity helps promote a trusting and informative relationship between the counselor and the student. Working with a student for all four years allows the counselor to get to know students, enabling the counselor to better assist students as they navigate the college planning process.

The Academy has a 100% college attendance rate for all seniors who apply. Therefore, college counseling is a major part of student support services. Juniors and seniors have individually scheduled appointments, and are expected to meet with their counselor frequently. Group sessions, and evening parent information sessions are scheduled.

Students in all grades are always welcome to make additional appointments. Students may contact their counselor anytime to request a meeting.

The best preparation for a successful college process is a successful high school career.  Students should work hard and do their best in an appropriate array of courses and they should engage as fully as they can in the Academy’s extracurricular life according to their tastes and interests.

The Academy is a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling and complies with the NACAC Statement of Principles of Good Practice.

Contact Information

SCHOOL PHONE NUMBER:  978.649.7611
SCHOOL FAX NUMBER:  978.649.2909

“We are here to support the students to have the best high school experience possible. Meeting the students in their freshman year and working as they progress through high school to help them with the college process and achieve the goals they have set for themselves is truly rewarding for us."

-Pam Bernazani Dean of Students &
Stacy Marsden
School Counselor