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Harvard-Westlake School

Student rating 4.4/5 by Harvard University student
3700 Coldwater Canyon North Hollywood CA 91604 United States

Academic

Harvard-Westlake School review by Harvard University student. Harvard-Westlake School has an excellent student-teacher ratio; resulting in lots of opportunities for private instruction and specialized help. The school is run much like a college, with certain teachers teaching classes on certain days; allowing for student to customize their schedules. There really are no weaknesses in the academics of the school -- with resources ranging from multiple computer labs spread throughout the school, to the state of the art science labs, to the enormous library system. The students are a good mix of cutthroat competitors and kids who are there for the "Harvard-Westlake experience" -- which encourages all students to be well rounded in the arts, sciences and athletics. The work load varies greatly on the classes one chooses to participate in, with AP English and language classes producing the most work.

College Counseling

Students are assigned a college counselor.… Get the real inside story on college couseling at Harvard-Westlake School, LOGIN or SIGN UP

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

The bulk of the graduating class.… Get insights and advice on admissions to Harvard-Westlake School, LOGIN or SIGN UP

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 quality of life at Harvard-Westlake is one of the best things about the school in my opinion. The facilities are some of the best I have ever seen, and are used to their full potential. The cafeteria is very good, with the option of getting pre-made food or ordering something from their grille. It is open all throughout the day (7:30-5), allowing students to get a meal or snack at any point through the day. The school attempts to have as much diversity as possible in the school, and does this with limited success. However, the majority of students in the school are Caucasian or Asian. Because of the cost of the school -- the vast majority of students are "middle class" or higher, but the school does give need based scholarships. The High School is located in a relatively upper - middle class neighborhood, providing much safety and stability for the students.

Harvard-Westlake offers an amazing array of extra curricular activities. They have a full range of sports including basketball, football, baseball, soccer, swimming, wrestling, tennis, golf, track and field, and many other sports. They also tout a symphony orchestra, theater group, dance group and even a skiing group. Harvard-Westlake has no general rivalries, but has rivalries in each different sport with a different school. Basketball has been the most important thing in my life, as I played every one of my years at Harvard-Westlake and continue to play at Harvard. Not only did being on the team teach me life lessons such as discipline and teamwork, but it gave me a chance to become close with many of my classmates and teachers, many of which I still in contact with today.