A New, But Familiar, Face In the Crowd

Chris Quazzo IMG_8568 Photo: Carli Kovel If you’ve recently been seeing a friendly, yet unfamiliar face that has popped up in our community during the past few weeks, then it’s probably Ms. O’Malley. As the newest addition to the College Counseling office, Ms. O’Malley is excited to be joining Latin’s faculty and taking on the role of counseling a third of the junior class through their college process as well as teaching the College Counseling course. She’s also a Latin graduate herself from the class of 2000, so it’s safe to say that she has plenty of insight into the life and inner workings of us Latin students. I sat down with her to get some more information about her somewhat sudden arrival to our school and learn a little more about her background. When I asked her about joining the faculty in the middle of the year, in the heat of first semester’s end, she told me that it felt like the perfect time, especially for College Counseling, because the college process really works on a timeline from January to January, commending with the discussion of PSATs with the Juniors. So, even though the timing is a little awkward in terms of the calendar school year, it’s perfect for College Counseling. She then told me a little about her background, including how she was previously a college representative at Knox College, her Alma Mater, how she spent some time in consulting, and then went to work at La Lumiere School for five years as the Director of Admissions and Financial Aid as well as a college counselor. I went on to ask her about how far in advance she knew she’d be joining the College Counseling office and if she had to drop everything to come here. She told me that it was a little sudden, but it was serendipitous that the opportunity to return to Chicago—and Latin, specifically—presented itself. When asking her about her favorite part of being a college counselor, she responded that “she loves helping kids make the decision and seeing the contrast between what their mindsets are in January of their Junior year and how they’ve evolved by the end of their Senior year.” I was also curious about her experience being a Latin graduate herself, so I asked her a few questions about what it was like to come back. She said that she’s thrilled to be back in Chicago and even more thrilled to be coming home to Latin. She finds it particularly interesting to now see and experience the school as an adult rather than as a student. She thinks the students are fantastic, and she’s really happy to be in an environment where the kids actually want to be there and want to learn. As she astutely put it, “The walls have changed, but the heart of the place hasn’t.” So welcome home, Ms. O’Malley! We thank you in advance for taking on the role of guiding us through the whirlwind that is the college process. And for those of you who aren’t familiar with her yet, you will, soon enough, when that long-anticipated process begins for you.]]>