College Counseling

Two graduates.

College Counseling

The goal of our College Counseling department is to equip students with skills and knowledge they need in order to apply to college and succeed in college. Our College Counselors majored in the Arts themselves and still work professionally in the Arts, which allows them to offer college and career advice to students based on firsthand experience.

Juniors at Idyllwild Arts take a year-long Life Skills class with our College Counselors. It teaches skills such as interviewing, résumé-building, and professional communication, along with introducing students to the college application process. This is also when mandatory meetings with their College Counselor begin. Students use this individual time with their College Counselor to explore their goals and needs, and begin cultivating a selective list of colleges. Students finalize this list during their Senior year by focusing on a manageable number of schools that give them the best chance for admission and future success.

Seniors at Idyllwild Arts take a one-semester Life Skills class that covers information all students will need while applying to colleges, and also have individual meetings to focus on things specific to each student. Within their Arts major, Seniors also take a Senior Seminar, which provides instruction and feedback for portfolios and auditions. Faculty members help students coordinate and plan audition recordings, travel, and schedules. Each year, our Dramatic Arts department seniors travel with faculty to the Chicago Unified Auditions; the Visual Arts and InterArts departments travel to Portfolio Days; and students in all departments regularly attend competitions, lectures, and showcases that present them with opportunities at the next level.

While students are ultimately responsible for their college applications, and while self-sufficiency is an important skill they will need to have beyond their time at Idyllwild Arts, we provide all of the above tools to assist them with navigating this experience.

Idyllwild Arts offers the PSAT once a year for Juniors in October and the SAT once a year in March. Our test-center coordinator, Rebecca Kandel, works with all aspects of testing. Please address your standardized testing questions to her at

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Read our blog article for more details on how a rigorous performing arts education prepares students for college.