The Team
Barbara Connolly

Barbara Connolly received a BGS degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and a Juris Doctorate from the University of Detroit School of Law. She has been counseling students and families in the college and graduate school admissions process for more than 18 years. She was an admissions reader at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business. She is a Certified Educational Planner (CEP), a professional member of the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA), a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), and a member of the Michigan Association for College Admission Counseling (MACAC). She is also an attorney. Her skills as a lawyer are fully utilized as she helps students advocate for themselves in the competitive college admissions process. In addition, Barbara and her husband are the parents of four children. All of Barbara's children were admitted to Ivy League and other selective colleges. Her experience as a parent has been a tremendous benefit to the families who have worked with College Choice Counseling.​

Her students have been admitted to many fine colleges and universities, including:






Amherst College

American University


Barnard College

Baylor University

Boston College
Boston University

Bradley University

Brandeis University

Brown University

California Institute of Technology (Caltech)

Carnegie Mellon University

Chapman University

Colgate University

Columbia University
Cornell University

Cornell Law School
Dartmouth University


Drexel University

Duke University

Eastern Michigan University
Emerson College

Florida International University 


Georgia Tech

Georgetown University
Georgetown Law School

Grinnell College

Hamilton College

Harvard College

Illinois Institute of  Technology

Indiana University

Indiana University - Kelley School of Business

Ohio State University

Ohio Wesleyan

Johns Hopkins University

Kalamazoo College

Loyola Marymount University, Los Angeles

Loyola Marymount University, Manhattan

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)

McGill University

Miami University, Ohio

Michigan State University (MSU)

Middlebury College

New School, New York

New York University (NYU)

Northwestern University

Pace University
Princeton University

Rice University

Riksumeikan University, Japan

Rochester Institute of Technology

San Diego State University
Stanford University

Southern Methodist University (SMU)

Syracuse University

Texas A&M University

The College of Wooster

Tufts University

University of Arizona

University of California, Berkeley

UC, Berkeley - Haas School of Business

University of California Los Angeles (UCLA)

University of California Santa Cruz (UCSC)

University of Chicago

University of Colorado, Boulder

University of Denver

University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign

University of Miami, Coral Gables, Florida

University of Michigan, Ann Arbor

University of Michigan Ross School of Business

University of Pennsylvania (UPenn)
UPenn, Wharton

University of San Diego

University of Southern California (USC)
University of Texas at Austin

University of Wisconsin, Madison

Vassar College

Washington University St. Louis

Washington University St. Louis Law School

Williams College

Yale University


Lee graduated Princeton with a A.B. in Comparative Literature.  He loves to teach - he has been tutoring SAT/ACT prep for more than 10 years.   Lee is also expert at working with students to develop and perfect the essays for their college applications.  His study of literature and his writing while at Princeton give him a deep foundation to help students with their essays.


Teagan graduated magna cum laude with a joint A.B. in Social Studies and African Studies from Harvard.  While at Harvard, his senior thesis received the Hoopes Prize, a selective award recognizing outstanding academic performance.  After graduating, he worked as an Associate Consultant for Bain & Company.  He has worked with numerous students to find their ideal writing voice for college applications, critical essays, and research papers.  He also helps students prepare for standardized exams, improve their study habits, and master high school subjects. 


Louise earned a B. A. in Journalism and English and a Law Degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  After practicing law in Colorado for many years, Louise began to work in the education field and earned a Master’s Degree in Secondary Education from Regis University. She is a fully licensed teacher in secondary English and Social Studies.  Her love of high school students and education led her to college counseling, and she has been active in the field for over 10 years.  Louise visits many colleges and attends multiple consulting conferences and trainings annually.  She is an active member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), the Rocky Mountain Association for College Admission Counseling (RMACAC), Higher Education Consultants Association (HECA), Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) and College Consultants of Colorado.


Jenny received her B.A. in English in China. She has five years of experience in teaching at one of the largest English training schools in China, New Oriental School. She obtained her TESOL certificate from the Boston Academy of English in Massachusettes and later received her MBA from Walsh College in Michigan. She is currently completing her college counseling certificate program through UCLA while advising international students on their college applications to U.S. colleges and universities. Jenny loves working with students, particularly international students, to help them find their best-fit schools.


Jonah is a lifelong learner, oldest brother, musician, artist, former camp counselor and tutor working with students of all ages and skill levels.  His approach to learning reflects his diverse interests across disciplines. He graduated from Pomona College.  During his liberal arts education, he explored research and writing and built a logical and methodical style of thinking. He tutors a range of subjects from math to Spanish to essay writing to standardized testing. Working as a tutor has allowed him to share his passion for learning in a meaningful ongoing way. 


For each new student, he takes an integrated and rigorous approach to address specific needs. Through hard work and focus, he hopes to not only reinforce concepts and foster academic success, but more importantly, instill a lasting drive to learn and thrive. 


Jeremy Parise is a tutor and teacher as well as an actor and musician who recently transplanted from Los Angeles to San Francisco. Born in Rhode Island and a Harvard University graduate, he has been tutoring for 15 years in New York City, Los Angeles and San Francisco. He has also taught Chemistry, Precalculus, and Algebra II Honors at Marlborough High School in Los Angeles. He has recorded two full-length albums and has toured extensively as a singer-songwriter as well as guitar and bass player for various acts. His film-score work has garnered great praise, including the Monte Carlo International Award for Best Film Score.


Sam is an emeritus tutor for College Choice Counseling who graduated cum laude with an A.B. from Harvard. He also graduated summa cum laude and ranked 1st in his class with a  Juris Doctorate from Washington University St. Louis Law School.  He has been a participant in the Harvard Alumni Interview program since 2012. Before he retired to practice law, Sam tutored ACT/SAT for over ten years for College Choice Counseling.


With a BA in Economics and an MBA, Ola has over 20 years experience in teaching and academic counseling having taught Business and Management at the International Baccalaureate level in top schools in the UAE and Saudi Arabia. During those years she shared the experience of many parents who were trying to help their children select, apply and relocate to universities in Europe, the United States and Canada. Ola understands the college application and selection process very well and has successfully placed hundreds of students in academic institutions of their choice. Ola is based in Montreal, Canada. She is a concerned parent with college kids of her own, who appreciates the anxiety that parents and children go through when applying to universities and relocating to a new country.


Lisa is a college counselor with 28 years of experience. She has an MA degree in Interpersonal and Public Communication and an MA degree in Counseling. She is a  licensed teacher in English, Speech, Journalism, Theater, Radio/Television/Film and has appeared in national television and radio commercials. Lisa has worked as a faculty member for Bowling Green State University, Central Michigan University, and Oakland University and worked as an essay grader for ACT and SAT.  Lisa currently works as a guidance and college counselor at the top ranked high school in Michigan. Lisa provides full college counseling and ACT tutoring for College Choice Counseling clients.


Jason received his B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Purdue University and holds a minor in Chemistry and Music Theory. He later went on to obtain his Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from University of California, Berkeley and was a recipient of the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. Today, he works at Ford Motor Company as a full-time engineer, reducing greenhouse gas emissions from automobiles. He has been tutoring throughout his career as an opportunity to share knowledge and help others achieve academic goals. Jason has tutored math, chemistry, and physics at all levels (middle school to college) and helps with standardized testing prep as well. His ultimate goal is to equip students with the logical tools needed to solve any future academic challenges that may arise.


William graduated from the University of California, Berkeley with degrees in architecture and business administration.  He has tutored GMAT and GRE prep for over 4,000 hours during the past seven years and has delivered over 14,000 explanations to GMAT and GRE questions.  He explains difficult-to-master material in an understandable way that is clear and concise he organizes and delivers a complex maze of difficult principles and practices.  His many students have been admitted to several Ivy League schools as well as a wide range of others.


Natasha graduated with a B.A., summa cum laude, from the University of Michigan Honors College with a double major in Creative Writing and French. She is a past recipient of the prestigious Hopwood Award for writing. She has tutored ACT/SAT, English, French and math for five years.  In addition, Sasha counsels students on applications to musical and theater programs. Sasha attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts in New York, on scholarship. She was asked to be a member of the third year repertory company and was signed by the top agent Don Buchwald Associates at the showcase. She also placed into the final round of auditions (the third round), in her Juiliard application, having been selected from among the top 20 girls who applied nationally. Sasha has performed in theater productions  in New York, on the West End, and at the Geffen in Los Angeles.


Dennis attended Monteith Honors College at Wayne State University where he received his degree in both Biology and Chemistry. He received his master’s degree in Biochemistry also from Wayne State University.  For 41 years, Dennis taught both Advanced Placement Biology and Advanced Placement Chemistry in the Bloomfield Hills school district at both Andover High School and Bloomfield Hills High School. In 2010 he received the Siemens Award as the Advanced Placement Teacher winner for the state of Michigan.


Alicja graduated from the University of Michigan with a Master of Music and also from Eastern Michigan University with a Master of Arts in Learning Disabilities and a Master of Arts in Counseling. She was a teacher and counselor in the Bloomfield Hills Schools for over 30 years. Alicja provides full college counseling support to College Choice Counseling clients. She is an IECA associate member.


Leah graduated with a B.S. degree in Mathematics and Secondary Education from Vanderbilt University. After teaching high school math for two years, Leah returned to school, earning her M.Ed in Prevention Science and Practice and her C.A.S. in School Counseling from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Leah currently works as a guidance and college counselor at a well-regarded public school in Massachusetts, providing academic, social-emotional, and college counseling to approximately 240 students throughout their four years of high school. Leah believes that each student has their own path and provides counseling that is specific to each student’s dreams and aspirations.


Brian is a full-time tutor from the Metro Detroit area. He graduated Magna Cum Laude from Oakland University with a BS in Mathematics and minors in Computer Science and Business. Brian tutors many subjects from elementary through college. He also helps with standardized tests, including ACT/SAT, and essay writing. His focus is on a true understanding of the material. In addition to tutoring, Brian has written a full novel and programmed over a dozen video games.


Annie graduated with a B.A., with distinction, from the University of Michigan, with a major in Psychology and a minor in Creative Writing.  She is currently a candidate for a Masters of Management degree from the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.  Annie received two coveted Hopwood awards for short fiction while at U of M.  She has also received numerous other writing awards, including from Scholastic Art and Writing.  Annie scored 2350 on her SAT, including an 800 in reading and an 800 in writing.  She is very talented at working with students to mold and fine tune their college application essays.  She also helps students with their creative writing either for school or for contests like Scholastic Art and Writing.  Annie is also a very capable SAT and ACT tutor.


Max graduated from the University of Chicago with degrees in Economics and Philosophy. He has provided consulting to Fortune 500 companies, including BP, Caterpillar, and Zurich Financial.


Max has over 10 years of experience tutoring LSAT, ACT, and SAT, including teaching  group classes. After being accepted to top tier law schools, Max pursued his passion for helping students get into the schools of their dreams.


David graduated from Emory University with a B.A. in History and a minor in Film Studies. Originally from Baltimore, MD and now based in Los Angeles, CA, David has taught in high schools in Atlanta and Los Angeles and has over 20 years of tutoring experience, covering both the SAT/ACT, direct subject support for English and History, and Executive Functioning and study skills coaching. In addition to teaching, David spent 12 years in Hollywood as a development executive and literary manager, working closely with film and television writers before switching sides to become a writer himself.


John taught for 31 years in the Southfield and Birmingham, Michigan Public Schools.  He has reviewed large numbers of college applications and essays for his students. He also wrote numerous recommendation letters for them. Throughout his career, John has coached championship high school debate. Before becoming a high school teacher, John was a litigator and appellate attorney. John edits and provides comments on application essays for College Choice Counseling, helping students craft essays that impress colleges.

John received his B.A. from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and his Juris Doctor from the University of Michigan Law School.


Roman earned a BS Chemical Engineering from Cornell University and worked in engineering sales before pursuing an MBA at Ohio State University.  Following business school, Roman worked for a Fortune 500 firm coordinating merger and acquisition projects worth upwards of $100 million.  Later, he founded a consulting practice focusing on projects in engineering, M&A, and education.  It was his consulting work in education that led him pursue a teaching license in Math.  Roman taught full-time for 3 years before starting his business, focusing on test prep, academic support and enrichment in Mathematics and Chemistry.   Roman achieved a perfect score of 36 on the official ACT Math and consistently achieves perfect scores on ACT and SAT Math practice tests. 


Heidi joins College Choice Counseling with seven years of college counseling experience at a top- ranked private high school in Michigan. She earned a BA in Interpersonal Communication at Michigan State University and an MA in School Counseling at Wayne State University. Currently licensed as a School Counselor and Limited Licensed Professional Counselor, Heidi uses her warm and approachable nature to connect with a wide variety of students and families. She offers meaningfully curated and personalized college planning based upon each student’s strengths, interests, preferences, and needs. She has visited numerous colleges throughout the country and is very passionate about matching students to their ideal college choices. Heidi loves getting to know her students so she can ensure that each can shine and best represent themselves in the college application process. 


Julian graduated magna cum laude and top in his class with a B.A. in Mathematics from Oakland University in 2015. During this time he was a university tutor and assistant instructor for subjects ranging from elementary algebra to multivariable calculus. He then worked in industry for three years in data analytics. In 2018 he began a dual PhD in Statistics and Computational Mathematics & Engineering at Michigan State University, with a focus in machine learning. At Michigan State University he is an assistant instructor for a course that introduces students to data science and 

mathematical modeling. Moreover, he has tutored K-12 mathematics for nearly ten years and has worked with a diverse group of students. His approach is to establish the fundamental concepts of mathematics in his students, and teach them to use logic rather than solely memory to solve problems. This methodology prepares K-12 students for more rigorous coursework in college, and embeds in them a mental framework that will serve them well in many areas of life. 


Nicole holds a B.A. from Brown University and an M.F.A. from UCLA, where she was the recipient of the Barbra Streisand/Sony Award, the Hollywood Foreign Press Association Award, the Charles and Lucile King Family Foundation Fellowship, among others. Nicole has taught at UCLA and UCLA Extension. For four summers, she taught in and coordinated the filmmaking program at the pre-college academic enrichment program, Summer Discovery at UCLA. She has tutored English, Latin, writing, and filmmaking.


Derek received his Bachelor of Science Degree with Distinction from Purdue University in the field of Mathematics and a Master of Arts in Teaching with a major in Secondary Education from Wayne State University.  He has taught at Bloomfield Hills High School since 2006 where he has developed a wide variety of classes ranging from Algebra 1 to AP Calculus BC.  His AP Calculus BC students have an average score of 4.3 which is well above the global mean score.


Derek presents his ideas in mathematics education at both the Michigan Council of Teachers of Mathematics statewide conference and Detroit Area Council of Teachers of Mathematics conference.  His sessions over the past ten years have been well attended by educators throughout Michigan.  He has tutored mathematics for five years covering topics from Algebra 1, ACT/SAT prep, through Calculus 4 at university.  In addition he has been trained as an International Baccalaureate High Level (HL) Mathematics instructor and tutored HL maths.   


Jacob  graduated from Tufts University, with a bachelor of arts degree, including semesters at Harvard University, Balliol College and Oxford University. He attended grad school at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London. He has had four years of personal executive function training with Dr. Ned Hallowell, author of Driven to Distraction. He has worked as a tutor for academic subjects, test prep, and executive function coach for 15 years. He lives in Los Angeles with his wife and two children, where he also works as a writer. 


Adam is a Mental Health Counselor and tutor in addition to being a brother, amateur stand-up comedian, and writer. Adam graduated magna cum laude from Boston College with a B.A. in Secondary Education and English. He was a Boston Public School teacher before continuing his education at Boston College, where he received a master’s degree in Mental Health Counseling with a focus in Positive Youth Development. Adam’s skills in counseling as well as teaching have allowed him to connect with a wide variety of students, both within the content of lessons and in structuring around learners’ diverse needs. He has been a personal tutor now for ten years, tutoring a variety of subjects. His areas of expertise are in SAT/ACT Prep, English and writing composition, Algebra I, Algebra II, Pre-Calculus, and Physics. Adam has been an English teacher in South Africa, where he organized a pre-school day-program. He has also taught English in Ecuador, Turkey, and Ireland. Adam has found that his experience traveling and teaching has illuminated the value of diversity and authenticity when it comes to being a good teacher and human being.


For over 35 years Drew has lived on boarding school campuses in Connecticut, Maryland, and Michigan where he has taught, coached, and been director of admission. Sports has always been a big part of Drew’s life. He played soccer, squash, and lacrosse at Hamilton College where he majored in Economics and Anthropology. His sons attended Ivy and NESCAC schools where they played Division I hockey and Division III lacrosse. After graduating from Yale, his older son has been playing hockey professionally. Drew loves advising students how they can leverage their athletic talents to gain a great education and further their playing careers.


Kevin graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with a BA in Psychology and Computer Science. While at Penn, he was a top-rated computer science TA and worked as a research assistant developing STEM teaching methods. With over 10 years of experience as a tutor, Kevin likes to employ his unique background to create a personalized, data-based approach to help students in the most efficient way possible, whether that's raising standardized test scores or improving school grades.


Abigail is a former MIT student and graduate of UAlbany with a BS in Mathematics and Statistics and a minor in Economics.  She has been tutoring math, chemistry, physics, and

SAT/ACT prep for over ten years.  While at MIT, she was admissions intern and became a Kaplan-trained SAT tutor. Abigail lives in Buffalo, NY with her husband and two cats.


Andrew is the Western Michigan Associate of College Choice Counseling.  He has a Masters of Education and Bachelor of Science from Grand Valley State University.  Andrew has experience working with a diverse range of K-12 and higher ed students through his work with substitute teaching, coaching, and working athletic events at the middle school and high school levels.  He also has been working in the Housing and Residence Life and Recreation departments the past two years at GVSU and Brown University.  Andrew has a passion for helping guide students along their education, athletic, and career journeys. Andrew is excited to focus his efforts on aiding western Michigan high school students in the college admissions process.  He works with students and their families in conjunction with Barbara as he develops his expertise in college admissions.


Brandon is an 11-year SAT & ACT tutor and a graduate of the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. There, he concentrated in Marketing and minored in French. Brandon is also a graduate of University Liggett School in Grosse Pointe, where he was the highest scoring SAT test-taker in his class. Along with a background in marketing professional services, Brandon has worked in educational advocacy and consulting for nearly a decade. After six years living in the Northeast, he is now based back in Metro Detroit.

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