College Counseling

Beginning in freshman year, students and parents interact closely with our College Counselor, who coordinates college preparation programming and the senior student application process.

Several pre-college preparatory exams are given to students. 8th, 9th, and 10th grade students take the ACT Aspire which assesses student readiness in English, math, reading, science, and writing. This assessment is specifically geared toward college and career readiness. This exam prepares students for the ACT. Sophomore and junior students take the PSAT in preparation for the SAT and for entry in the National Merit Scholarship Competition. These nationally-normed assessments help prepare our students to be successful on college entrance exams, the ACT and SAT.

In their sophomore year, students begin using a web-based tool called Naviance through the direction of the College Counselor. This program provides students with a wealth of information on more than 3,500 colleges and universities. In addition, students create a personal account in Naviance through which all applications are channeled.  

Visit to access Morgan Park Academy’s section of the Naviance site.

The College Counselor conducts evening parent workshops to acclimate parents to the college search, application, and selection process. College Information Night, College Financial Aid Night, and Senior Parent Information Night offer an opportunity to gain knowledge and ask questions. Additionally, a Spring College Fair hosted at MPA provides our students with onsite college resources.
College advising becomes more focused in the students’ junior year. All juniors participate in a required College 101 course, in which students learn about the college application process. Topics covered include:  admission selectivity factors, resume preparation, and college essay writing. Junior student/parent meetings with the College Counselor provide more individualized college guidance. 
Senior students have regular individual and group meetings with the college counselor. Dozens of colleges and universities visit our campus during Upper School lunch to recruit our students. These visits are in addition to the schools who participate in the Spring College Fair. On May 1, MPA holds a celebration to mark the day students commit to a college of their choice.

Since 2009, MPA students have been accepted by 21 of the nation’s top 25 colleges and universities, as ranked by US News & World Report. Those schools include:
  • Princeton University
  • Yale University
  • University of Chicago
  • Columbia University
  • Stanford University
  • Duke University
  • University of Pennsylvania
  • Johns Hopkins University
  • Dartmouth College
  • California Institute of Technology
  • Northwestern University
  • Brown University
  • Cornell University
  • University of Notre Dame
  • Vanderbilt University
  • Washington University in St. Louis
  • Emory University
  • Georgetown University
  • University of Southern California
  • University of California, Los Angeles
  • University of Virginia
  • Tufts University
  • Wake Forest University
  • University of Michigan

College Resources

Our comprehensive guide to college exploration, application, and acceptance.

Naviance is an internet-based tool that serves multiple functions. Students have Individual accounts that allow them to save information and review test scores and GPA. Students can create lists of “colleges of interest”, and compare their GPA and test scores to those of Morgan Park Academy students who have applied to universities and been admitted in the past. Naviance holds current information on more than 3,500 colleges and universities. Visit our Academy site here:

Students and parents will need a username (email address) and password to access Naviance. Please contact our Director of College Preparation with any questions about your password.

The College Board
The College Board is a not-for-profit organization that fosters relationships between college admission professionals and counselors. In addition, the College Board website provides a wealth of information on colleges, the SAT, Advanced Placement, and more. Visit their extensive website at:

The National Association of College Admission Counseling is a professional organization that sets guidelines for colleges on admission practices. Visit the student/parent section, for helpful information on college preparation:

College Confidential
This website is a college-bound community on the Web. There are articles about choosing a college, application strategies, financial aid, and more. The site includes a discussion community related to college admissions:

Colleges that Change Lives
Colleges That Change Lives, Inc. (CTCL) is a non-profit organization dedicated to the advancement and support of a student-centered college search process. The member colleges support the goal of each student finding a college that develops a lifelong love of learning and provides the foundation for a successful and fulfilling life beyond college. Read more about CTCL at their website:

College Entrance Exams
ACT and College Board Assessments

The ACT, SAT Reasoning Test and SAT Subject Tests are nationally-normed, standardized tests that students take as part of the college admission process. They are designed to predict a student’s ability to complete their freshman year of college successfully. At the Academy, junior students are encouraged to take both the ACT and the SAT by the end of the school year. Students should take at least one of the assessments twice.

Through researching colleges, students will determine whether taking the SAT Subject Tests will be necessary for admission. A comprehensive list of colleges that recommend or require SAT Subject tests can be found at the Compass Education Group website:

Students should register for these exams at their respective websites (linked below) and may take them at any of the available neighboring high schools.

Students will need to provide our Morgan Park Academy school code: 141-040

ACT and ACT + Writing

SAT Reasoning and Subject Tests

Accommodations for Students with Learning Disabilities
Students in need of accommodations or extended time may apply to receive these services through each organization. Both ACT and the College Board will review requests for accommodations in advance of national test dates. We are glad to aid students and families in understanding this process and will provide official documentation from the school of specific learning needs.

ACT Accommodations Information
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