College Counseling Office Coordinator/College Counselor

Shady Side Academy

Pittsburgh, PA, USA


Counseling/Social Work

Full time

Jul 27

The College Counseling office seeks a highly-organized, collaborative and student-centered member to join our dynamic team. This is a unique opportunity to join an experienced highly-functioning team of college counselors who believe that the college process can be one of profound learning and growth (and even fun!) and that every student should have access to a trusted partner as they navigate their plans for life beyond high school.

Guiding Responsibilities

  • Uphold the mission of Shady Side Academy, and the mission of the College Counseling Office
  • Support students, especially in the eleventh and twelfth grades, in their college process
  • Support the college counselors in each aspect of their work
  • Maintain strict confidentiality regarding all student information
  • Serve as the first point of contact in the College Counseling Office for students and parents as well as college and university admissions representatives and all visitors.
  • Foster a welcoming atmosphere and maintain the balance between student-centered space and professional work environment


  • Greet students, parents, college visitors, and assist with phone/email reception for general information
  • Oversee the college and university admissions representative visit calendar: making
  • appointments, confirming meeting space for all visits, ensuring students are informed of the visits, assisting with meet-and-greet of visitors, taking attendance and follow-up.
  • Lead record-keeping and filing for CCO, including coordination with the Registrar on academic records for all students
  • Processing of transcripts and school documents: ensuring transcripts are up-to-date and accurate, uploading all transcripts into college application management software.
  • Assist with data entry and processing of student information in our major systems including Scoir, College Kickstart, and others.
  • Collect and compile all elements of the secondary school materials being sent to colleges
  • Edit counselor recommendation letters 
  • Manage teacher rec letter process – collect and share student info forms with teachers, receive letters, coordinate editing, and track completion and submission
  • Communicate with college reps throughout the year to check on student application status and schedule counselor calls
  • Coordinate department budget-related tasks, including credit card reconciliation, invoice, and reimbursement requests
  • Coordinate with Testing Coordinator, and Learning Specialist as needed, the administrative and local contact details for all standardized testing for the SAT and ACT
  • Deliver and retrieve daily mail from the SSA mailroom
  • Maintain office equipment and troubleshoot issues with multi-function office equipment
  • Order supplies and maintain yearly college materials
  • Manage calendar of events and coverage including updating all-school calendars and team calendars
  • Other duties as assigned by Director of College Counseling and/or Head of Senior School


  • Compilation of electronic or paper communications regarding the college process to parents and students 
  • Primary point of communication with students, families, and communications teams regarding programs, events, and college knowledge
  • Foster community through social media and web presence

Student Support and Programming

  • Provide direct support to students in regards to basic college counseling questions (i.e. standardized test registration, CommonApp questions) and/or soft skills (i.e. etiquette, organization)
  • Lead planning and implementation for the spring college fair for the 8 members of PCIS, inviting and managing more than 100+ college admissions representatives
  • Plan and implement logistics for all CCO programs
  • Work closely with college counselors to keep track of students' college, financial aid, and scholarship applications and making sure all materials are submitted by deadlines.
  • Assist recent alums with sending SSA transcripts and letters of recommendation for transfer or job applications

College Counseling

  • Advise, guide and support up to 20-25% case load of students in each class throughout the entire college selection and application process including testing, course selection, creating a well-balanced list of colleges, application procedures and requirements, selection of teacher recommendations, financial aid and scholarships, contact with college admissions personnel as appropriate, and communication with students and families on their process with strong mentoring, coaching and support
  • In partnership with the CCO team, design and facilitate regular programming for students and parents at different grade levels
  • Maintain strong relationships with college admissions professionals through travel, outreach, hosting, and PD opportunities
  • Stay attuned to the latest developments in the field through regular college visits as well as attending professional workshops and conferences
  • Consistently provide proactive communication to students, parents, and professional colleagues, in school, and at colleges and universities
  • Design strategic communications for students and families throughout the year to help them navigate the complexities of the admissions and financial aid process
  • Special projects as determined by the Director 


Ideal qualities for our team

  • Ability to take the work seriously without taking yourself too seriously
  • A sense of humor 
  • A passion for working with young people through the beauty and messiness of adolescence
  • Deep empathy and compassion
  • Openness and willingness to be in a constant state of learning and growth 

Candidate requirements

  • Must have college degree
  • Experience working with high school students and/or families in the college process preferred
  • Warm, welcoming demeanor and the ability to establish excellent rapport with diverse high school aged students and their families.
  • Precise attention to detail and exceptional organizational skills.
  • Ability to set priorities, multi-task, and meet deadlines.
  • Outstanding communication skills in all areas (phone, email, written) with excellent spelling and grammar and the ability to proof own work.
  • Excellent computer literacy skills, including proficiency in Microsoft Office and Google suite. Knowledge of college counseling platforms such as Naviance, Maia, and Scoir is a plus.
  • 3+ years’ administrative office experience in a client and team oriented, professional environment accustomed to managing databases. 
  • Experience in an education environment is preferable.
  • This position is full-time, in-person with occasional evening/weekend commitments


Salary is competitive with area independent schools and commensurate with experience. Excellent health and retirement benefits are part of the employment package. Funding exists to support continuing education and professional development. Financial benefits include tuition remission for children of full-time employees, discounts on summer programs, and after-school programs. There may be free on campus housing opportunities available through participation in our Senior School Residential Life program.

Application Information 

Interested candidates should send a cover letter, a resume, and the names and contact information of three references via the employment page at Shady Side Academy is an equal opportunity employer and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, religion, gender, sexual orientation, age or disability.

 About Shady Side Academy

Shady Side Academy is a nationally respected private school in Pittsburgh for boys and girls in grades pre-kindergarten through 12, with an optional boarding experience in high school. Shady Side Boasts an 8:1 student-to-teacher ratio, with an average class size of 15. Four age-specific campuses with extraordinary resources, teachers who actively mentor, a forward-thinking curriculum, a diverse and inclusive community, and a legacy of alumni accomplishments all inspire Shady Side students to high achievement in academics, the arts, athletics, and to meaningful ambitions in life. Visit the school’s web site at Our campuses are tobacco free.

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