Kara Courtois

College Admissions Consultant

Admissions Experience
Former admissions officer at Barnard College 

University of Notre Dame – Bachelor’s in History 
University of Portland – Master’s in Teaching 
Teacher’s College, Columbia University and Steinhardt School of Education, NYU – Graduate Coursework 

I came to College Coach with a combination of experience in college admissions and teaching in elementary and  high schools in Washington D.C., California, and Florida. Upon graduating from the University of Notre Dame, I volunteered as a teacher for two years with an AmeriCorps-sponsored program while earning a master of arts in teaching. Having taught in urban areas with students who had great needs of all varieties, I was honored to transition to working in college admissions at Barnard College. I traveled extensively, recruiting a huge diversity of academically gifted young women from the Midwest, NYC public high schools, and internationally. College admissions at a highly selective college gave me the unique opportunity to mesh my classroom teaching experience with an ability to understand what colleges seek in their students today. Additionally, having been a competitive high school athlete in track followed by rowing on the varsity crew team at Notre Dame, I know the extra demands student athletes juggle. I enjoy helping them figure out how to balance their athletic interests with their academic goals.

Get to know me:


I have worked with students interested in:

Science Technology Engineering
Mathematics Pre-med Accelerated medical - BS/MD
Pre-dentistry Accelerated dental - BS/DDS Nursing
Pre-veterinary Physical therapy Pre-law
Business Visual and performing arts Music
Theater Dance Art
Film Computer science Graphic design
Teaching/education certification Honors programs Ivy League
Large state schools Small liberal arts colleges Religiously affiliated schools

I have also worked with:

Athletes International students Students with learning differences
Non-traditional students Transfer students First-generation students

Why I joined College Coach: 
I came to College Coach because I grew to understand through both my teaching and admissions experience that I work best with students and families in a 1:1 relationship so that I can truly get to know them as individuals. Teaching 150+ students each year or reading applications for several hundred students in each admissions cycle rarely gave me time to get to know students beyond grades and numbers. Working with College Coach has allowed me to focus my attention on helping to understand the very specific questions, concerns, frustrations, and misunderstandings that co-exist in the minds of students and their families. I especially enjoy getting to know a student’s personality to help her find the next step on her academic and personal journey. Additionally, I am constantly seeking ways to learn in all facets of my life. College Coach has specifically encouraged any opportunity to stretch myself  through my interaction with all types of students and  in collaborating with colleagues as we constantly gain new knowledge about today’s college admissions process and  trends in education. I have enjoyed eight years with College Coach because of the close relationships I have been able to form with families as we’ve walked the path to college together.

Running, yoga, hiking, volunteer work, traveling, reading, writing, cooking, doing arts & crafts with my kids

Get in touch with College Coach today to start working with Kara Courtois or one of our other educational consultants.