Blue Print is a podcast hosted by Associate Director of College Counseling Meghan Toomey and is meant to help guide students and families throughout their college process. To do this, you will hear from people in our office, our School, and outside guests who are experts in college admissions and their respective fields. 

Episode Eight: Year-End Wrap Up and Look Ahead 

The best way to end the year is by reviewing trends from this year’s admission cycle and some takeaways for our students and families as we move into the next year of the college admission cycle. Co-Director of College Counseling joins Meghan Toomey to discuss current test-optional policies, holistic admissions, rising application numbers, early applications, and even Chat Gpt. College admissions are more competitive than ever, and rising seniors should spend their summer wisely researching to ensure they find colleges that are a good fit for them. By looking at the trends from previous cycles, they can be armed with information to help them enter the application cycle prepared. Ultimately, your transcript is still a crucial part of your application, as is what you do outside of the classroom as the holistic process continues to set students apart, particularly at the most selective schools.

Listen to Episode Eight of the Blue Print

Episode Seven: Name Image and Likeness (NIL)

On this episode, we discuss Name Image and Likeness (NIL) and how it can, is, and will impact high school and college student-athletes. NIL is the term the NCAA uses to refer to a student-athlete and their identifiable factors that make an individual unique. Meghan Toomey talks with Courtney Altemus, CEO and Founder of Team Altemus, about what parents and student-athletes need to know about the term, how it came about, and how student-athletes can now use their name, image, and likeness to earn money.  The mission of Team Altemus is to provide athletes and their families equal access to unbiased financial literacy education and advisor due diligence, regardless of socio-economic background or status. In the summer of 2022, Team Altemus joined with Anomaly Sports to create Advance, a premier resource for athlete development and engagement by college and professional sports organizations. They are rooted in a passion for helping provide critical life skills, professional readiness, NIL, and elite programming to athletes at all levels beyond their sport. Their team’s diversity strategically brings together experts across sports business, athletic administration, education, finance, law, marketing, branding, and risk/compliance for the benefit of their partners. They are a “Protector of Possibilities.” 

Listen to Episode Seven of the Blue Print

Episode Six: The College Search and Finding a Good Fit

On this episode, Meghan Toomey speaks with Jeremy Branch about factors to consider when building a college list and how that list may ebb and change throughout your journey.  In this enriching talk about the college search and finding a good fit, Meghan and Jeremy discuss factors such as researching academic options, visiting schools, meeting with professors, to learning more about their career counseling office and alumni networks. They discuss building a college list and reminders that selectivity does not dictate a college experience, which led them into a conversation about the value of a college education at a time when many people are wondering, "Is college worth it?" 

Jeremy Branch is the Senior Assistant Director of Enrollment Management for Penn State University. He has worked in admission for 16 years and is an active Pennsylvania Association for College Admission Counseling (PACAC) member. He has served in various roles for the Executive Committee, Professional Development Committee, and the Inclusion Access and Success Committee. He has also served as faculty, Director, and Dean of the Summer Institute for PACAC. Jeremy most recently served as President of PACAC for 2020-21. He is currently Board Director for the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC).

Listen to Episode Six of the Blue Print

Episode Five: Historically Black Colleges and Universities

On this episode of Blue Print, our conversation will center around Historically Black Colleges and Universities, also called HBCUs. Two special guests join Meghan Toomey for a fun and informative discussion: Mr. James Johnson, a two-time HBCU graduate, and our very own Mrs. Jade Johnson, associate director of college counseling. They share their personal and professional experiences and knowledge of HBCUs. Our conversation centers around myths and truths about HBCUs. Jade brings a wealth of experience as a college counselor, and James adds personal insights into his experience being an alumnus of an HBCU.

Listen to Episode Five of the Blue Print

Episode Four: Athletics Beyond The Hill

Meghan Toomey speaks with Director of Athletics and Co-Curricular Activities and Head Boys' Basketball Coach Seth Eilberg P'22 '23 '25 and Assistant Director of Athletics and Head Boys' Ice Hockey Coach Sean O'Brien P'23 '25 about what it means to be a student-athlete beyond Hill. We talk about recruiting tips to help you or your child navigate their way to playing sports in college. Our guests bring a wealth of knowledge and experience as former collegiate student-athletes, coaches, and parents currently going through the process.

Listen to Episode Four of the Blue Print

Episode Three: C0-Directors of College Counseling Lauren Hoyt and Jodi Robinson

On this episode, we welcome Co-Directors of College Counseling Lauren Hoyt and Jodi Robinson to the Blue Print. Jodi and Lauren share with us their paths to becoming Co-Directors, their philosophies on working with students and families, and where they see our office and the future of college counseling. Their extensive knowledge and experience guide us in exploring each student's sense of self, interests and talents, ambitions, and long-term aspirations. All of this is undertaken to direct every student toward making sound choices that are individually focused. 

Listen to Episode Three of the Blue Print

Episode Two: Director of Counseling Lisa Roethling

On this episode, we welcome our very own Lisa Roethling to the Blue Print. Ms. Roethling has served as the Director of Counseling at The Hill School since 2019. Lisa and Meghan discuss the pressures of the college process and how parents can help their students work to balance their mental health throughout the process.

Listen to Episode Two of the Blue Print

Episode One: Jeffrey Selingo

On this episode we welcome award-winning higher education journalist and New York Times bestselling author Jeffrey Selingo to our debut podcast. Mr. Selingo’s most recent book reveals a look from inside the admissions office. In Who Gets In and Why: A Year Inside College Admission, Mr. Selingo spent a year embedded in three different admissions offices—Emory, a selective private university; Davidson, a leading liberal arts college; and the University of Washington, a flagship public campus. This is one of the most insightful books about “getting in” and what higher education has become. Who Gets In and Why not only provides an unusually intimate look at how admissions decisions get made, but guides prospective students on how to honestly assess their strengths and match with the schools that will best serve their interests. 

Listen to Episode One of the Blue Print 

Contact Us:

Lauren Hoyt
Co-Director of College Counseling

Jodi Robinson
Co-Director of College Counseling

Beth Allain P'18 '23
Assistant Director of College Counseling

Meghan Toomey
Associate Director of College Counseling

David Page '05
Student Athlete College Recruitment Coordinator and Barry McCarthy '71 Head Coach of Boys'  Varsity Lacrosse

Mike Boyer P'25
College Counselor and Head Football Coach

Larissa Snyder
Athey Family Master of English, College Counselor, and Dorm Head (Upper School West)

Mary Vassallo
College Counseling Administrative Assistant