Nueva is excited to welcome Elise Maar as the new Director of College Counseling for the high school. Elise -- who comes to Nueva with more than a decade of experience at Stanford University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions and who has reviewed tens of thousands of college applications -- brings a robust and intricate understanding of what universities seek in students applying to college.
"We are incredibly fortunate to have Elise join the high school as she has an impressive professional background and deep knowledge of our philosophical approaches," said Diane Rosenberg, Head of School of The Nueva School. "Elise brings a rare combination of skills and talents."
Not only does Elise have a strong understanding of Nueva's philosophy, she also is excited to work with the students.
"I believe in Nueva's philosophy and I am excited to see it at work at the high school level," she said. "I can't wait to let colleges know what our students will be engaged with! ... One thing that was missing from my work on the college side was working closely with high school students over time, and I am looking forward to getting to know our students, supporting, and encouraging them," she said.
Elise also reflected on how her university-insider perspective will enrich our high school students' applications and enhance the overall application process.
"My knowledge of what colleges are looking for (e.g., students who genuinely love learning and who are creative problem-solvers) will be helpful as I introduce Nueva to colleges," she said. "Having been on the college side, I know how an application reads; that is, I can tell if a student's application is one that will stand out. I'll be able to give advice on how a student might make his/her application stronger. Also, I will be able to dispel the myths out there about the college admission process in general."
"Myths" about college are of particular interest for Elise. She recently recounted a story about a zealous preschool mother who sought counsel regarding which kindergarten program to enroll her child to ensure he/she would get into Stanford. Elise opined that there is no set path to any college and the admissions process should begin after students discover their interests and talents.
Elise is very interested in helping students find the right school, which meets each blossoming adult's particular needs, goals, passions, and dreams.
"I worked in the offices of Student Affairs and Undergraduate Education at Stanford too and one of the projects I managed was the creation of the first Freshman/Sophomore College there," she said. "I am very interested in the concept of 'fit' as students choose colleges ... I want [our students] to look beyond the name [of the school] and figure out whether the college will be a place that will inspire them intellectually and whether it will be a place where they can thrive."
Among many of Elise's attributes that she brings to Nueva, her aspirations to find a good "fit" for each student makes her an outstanding fit for our school and overall community!
As of November 6, Elise will be on campus every Tuesday from 9 am to 2 pm in the J-Building.