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Gonzaga College High School

Student rating 4.8/ 5 by Harvard University student
19 Eye Street NW Washington DC 20001 United States

Academic

Gonzaga College High Schoolreview by Harvard University student. The faculty is very caring. There are subtle differences between teaching boys and girls and the teachers are good at teaching to an all male student body. Classes are small to medium (15-20 students)and get smaller as you become an upperclassman There are many supplementary learning opportunities. LEAD is a program held before the school day begins that teaches students about business. Average workload depends upon the difficulty of classes selected. An average week probably entails 20-25 hours a week. Sophomore year is the most difficult and requires more like 25-30 hours a week. Most of the work is essays and reading for quizzes and tests. The school is NOT an "exam factory." They encourage learning for learning's sake and do not teach toward the tests. In preparation for the AP Exams, there are after school review classes to help students prepare. The National Honor Society upperclassmen offer free tutoring to the rest of the student body. The faculty is also very assessable.

College Counseling

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Sample insights on college counseling
  • "They have contacts at most of the major universities and feel perfectly comfortable picking up the phone and advocating for a student to get accepted somewhere they feel is a good fit for that student. However, these counselors are certainly not magic bullets. They cannot guarantee that a student will get into an Ivy League university…"
  • "For those wishing to move on to Oxford or Cambridge, the provision is second-to-none. In the months running up to application and interview, every subject faculty offers classes (often run by former Oxbridge tutors) exploring further areas of their subject as well as offering advice on personal statements, interview technique and more…"

Admissions - Getting Accepted

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Sample insights on admissions
  • "Most younger siblings have an easy time in the admissions process. I can only think of one case of a younger sibling not being admitted. About half of the students who entered with me had come from public schools. The remainder came from private K-6 schools, or had transfered from other New York private schools The Elizabeth Morrow School and St. Bernard's were two of the larger feeder schools…"
  • "For the interview, dress conservatively. Try to be very clean and put together. Also, I was a tour guide for two years and at the end of every tour, we were asked to evaluate the candidate so if you think the tour is not apart of the process, you are very wrong. Ask questions and be interested. Also, tip for the parents*the kids speak on the tour. Don't ask their questions for them because their evaluation will be affected by the fact that the guides didn't hear a thing from the kid…"

School Life

The school in in inner-city Washington, DC, right on Capital Hill. It is very close to the Union Station Metro stop. Gonzaga is not a boarding school, so there is no housing on campus. The campus is beautiful and newly renovated. There are expansive courtyards, a newly redone football field, extensive parking lots for upperclassmen to drive into school. Freshmen and sophomores tend to drive in with upperlcassmen, parents rarely drop of their kids themselves. Each classroom has a projector and a screen, wired to a computer. Each day the student television program is broadcast over these projectors and the teachers also use them for classes, of course. There is a newly renovated dining hall and a meal plan is available. There are school dances with local all-girls schools held most weekends.

I was a member of the LEAD Program. This program is one of the best high school programs I have ever encountered and is something that has even come up in my recent investment banking interviews with such firms as Lehman Brothers and Goldman Sachs. In the program, twelve students were selected and split into teams of 6 and each team came up with a product concept and then met with venture capitalists to get funding for their products and then each team produced and sold the product to the members of the school community. My team made customized nalgene water bottles and took in $3000 in profits. The program also had a socially responsible component and, in the end, we gave all of the money to the American Red Cross. I was on the board of the national honor society and we orchestrated service projects in the Washington DC area. I played sports as well. Gonzaga certainly has a reputation for being somewhat of a jock school, even though it does not recruit athletes specifically. Gonzaga's soccer team is especially good, having won the WCAC championship for the past two years. The school's rowing, rugby, and football teams are also very good.