College Counseling

For our students, college prep goes way beyond our top-tier curriculum.

Our College Counseling Department also coordinates:

  • College Application Boot Camps,
  • Financial Aid Nights,
  • Jesuit Excellence Tour College Fair,
  • ACT prep classes,
  • PSAT/NMSQT testing for juniors,
  • Individual counseling,
  • More than 100 college rep visits each year, and
  • Alumni Mentorship Lunch Program - a signature program started at De Smet Jesuit.

A student favorite, the Alumni Mentorship Lunch Program ensures our juniors and seniors are networking with alumni in various career fields. Bi-monthly seminars host different professionals...and free pizza may be involved.

Our students graduate prepared to succeed in college, not just because they've met the academic requirements, but also because we train them in how to manage their time, how to network with others, and how to know their God-given gifts.


Four Years of College Prep

Freshman Year

Our college counseling department works with freshmen to transition them into our record-keeping system, Naviance / Family Connection. We provide hands-on instruction helping freshmen set up and troubleshoot their accounts, create the framework of their activity resumes, and undertake self-knowledge programs such as the Meyers-Briggs inventory. In addition, our college counselors plan and conduct standardized testing for freshmen students, specifically the EXPLORE exam distributed by ACT Inc.

Sophomore Year

College counselors work with sophomore students to begin the process of preparing for the ACT exam they will take as juniors. In addition, we continue the process of resume-building in preparation for the college applications they will fill out as seniors. As we do with the freshmen, we plan and coordinate the sophomore level of standardized testing, the PLAN exam.

Junior Year

Junior college counseling is focused on preparation for college applications. Juniors will take a diagnostic ACT during November of their junior year and will have an opportunity to take an ACT prep course in the February-April timeframe. During the second semester of junior year, juniors and their families will meet one-on-one with their assigned college counselor. This meeting is to discuss the college application process, from best practices for senior class selection to the college selection process to the technical details of submitting components of the application through Naviance. We help families prioritize their college visits and understand relevant timelines for standardized testing, financial assistance applications, and application submission. Juniors take their first official ACT test during the second semester of junior year.

Senior Year

Prior to the beginning of senior year, the college counseling staff conducts a “Common Application Boot Camp” to assist our seniors in beginning to fill out their applications. During this two-day, optional workshop, seniors have a chance to work on their applications in the presence of the college counselors for ease of access to information. We have found that this greatly increases the speed with which they get underway in the application process.

Throughout senior year, students work with their college counselors to ensure their documentation has reached the colleges they intend it to, to select decision-date options for the colleges to which they intend to apply, and to prioritize the admissions offers that they receive. In addition, we help students locate and procure scholarships and understand the offers made to them by their chosen schools

Counseling Department

Dave Boland

Dave Boland

Titles: College Adviser, Guidance Counselor
Degrees: ME, Education, University of Missouri-St. Louis
BA, Philosophy, Cardinal Glennon College Seminary
Will Gunn

Will Gunn

Titles: College Adviser
Degrees: BA, History, Washington University