Holyoke High School College Counseling

About HHS College Counseling

The Holyoke High School College Counseling program aims to provide all students, grades 9-12, with the information, skills and resources they need to pursue a postsecondary education. To accomplish this mission, school counselors meet with students in groups and individually to provide college counseling. In addition, stand-alone workshops are offered to all students and caregivers to educate families about the different aspects of post secondary planning. The college counseling team is led by a College and Career Counselor and is supported by the school counseling department.


College Tutorials & College Counseling Appointments

Visit (and subscribe to) Ms. Rigali’s Youtube Channel for tutorials and videos about college!

Sign up for an appointment with Ms. Rigali. Appointments may be used for:

  • Help with college applications
  • Signing up for SAT
  • Talking about college; asking questions
  • Completing a financial aid application
  • Caregivers and students are welcome to sign-up
  • More appointments will be added!

Upcoming Events

Early Fall College Workshop Series from HHS College and Career Counseling Program

*ALL sessions are open to students in all grades (only if they do not have class at that time; seniors may attend during class with the permission of a teacher) and parents/caregivers. Click HERE sign up for any workshops. A Zoom link will then be emailed prior to the workshop. Please note,  workshops that have passed will have a recorded version uploaded to Ms. Rigali’s YouTube Channel.

  • Wednesday, September 30th at 9am (A block): College 101: Thinking about college, types of colleges, general info about applying to college. 
  • Thursday, October 1st at 11am (G block): College searching: Explore colleges using several college search engines and learn to navigate a college website. 
  • Thursday, October 8th at 2pm (flex time): Thinking about financial aid: Search for colleges that give good financial aid and navigate a financial aid website. General info about loans and college financing (Studentaid.gov, EFC, etc.) 
  • Wednesday, October 14th at 1pm (after classes): Health careers: How to get into a nursing program or other health careers program, etc. 
  • Friday, October 16th at 12:15pm (H block): MA State Colleges and Universities: websites, admissions criteria, bridge programs, paying 
  • Monday, October 19th at 7pm: Parent/Caregiver General College Q&A (students and/or caregivers welcome to attend). Ask anything!
  • Tuesday, October 27th at 7pm: “The Application”:  kinds of applications, completing an application, pieces of an application  (essays and letters of recommendation). 

In addition to HHS workshops, students and families are highly encouraged to attend virtual sessions about college admissions and financial aid offered through MEFA. More workshops and sessions will be scheduled through the school year, check back for added dates and topics. Also, please note the Schedule of Fall College Representatives’ Visits .

Coming Up! The Mass College Application Celebration (MCAC)

Join Gear Up and the HHS College Counseling Program for two whole days of meetings and on-the-spot acceptances with area colleges!

  • It’s taking place on November 19th and 20th
  • Check out the participating Colleges (continually updated)
  • Sign-ups will become live the week of November 2nd. All seniors applying to college are encouraged to participate! In order to participate and be eligible for on-the-spot acceptances, students should complete their applications ahead of time. We recommend completing applications for any colleges of interest by November 2nd.

College & Career Planning Activities Year by Year

Learn about careers and colleges in Freshman Seminar

Use Career Cruising to explore careers and majors

Visit with college reps at HHS

Consider signing up for Upward Bound or Gear Up

Consider applying for the Early College program at HHS

Use Career Cruising to explore careers and majors

Take the PSAT (may not be offered in 20-21 due to COVID)

Use Khan Academy to practice for the SAT

Visit with college reps at HHS

Continue to explore colleges and careers through your academy, the work-based learning program, college websites, and by attending workshops offered at HHS

Consider applying for the Westfield Promise Program at HHS

Consider applying to a Dual Enrollment program through HCC, STCC, or UMASS

Attend group sessions with school counselors to learn about college (counselors come into classes)

Talk individually with counselors about postsecondary plans

Meet with the work-based learning staff to set-up internships or to obtain work

Take the PSAT in fall (may not be offered in 20-21 due to COVID)

Use Khan Academy to study for the SAT

Take the SAT or ACT in the spring

Visit with college reps at HHS and visit colleges

Make a college list and share with the college counseling department

Research colleges using search tools and websites

Attend workshops offered by HHS

Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation

Summer: write a college essay

Summer: start college applications

Refine your college list and share with college counseling department

Visit with college reps at HHS and visit colleges

Take the SAT/ACT in the fall

Ask teachers to write letters of recommendation

Apply to college

Apply for financial aid

Apply for scholarships-HHS posts many

Take any required placement tests (community college)

Work with the work-based learning staff for post-secondary job placement


College & Career Counselor

Anna Rigali: arigali@hps.holyoke.ma.us

North Campus Counseling

School Counseling Department

Dean Campus Counseling

Teresa Beaulieu, School Counselor: tbeaulieu@hps.holyoke.ma.us 

College Access Programs

Gear Up

Northfield Mt. Hermon Upward Bound Program

Work-Based Learning Program

Antonio Quinones: aqalbino@hps.holyoke.ma.us 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email