Helen combines her knowledge of college admissions research, counseling methods, and adolescent development to coach students through the college application process. She first dove into the field of college admissions as a research assistant for a community-based organization in L.A., for which she collaborated with the Regional Admission Counselors of California to plan college fairs and summer admissions boot camps. Her work cumulated in a presentation on the efficiency of peer-to-peer college prep mentoring at the 2013 American Anthropological Association conference.
Since then, she has helped scores of students succeed through the college admissions process. Holding a Ed.M. in Human Development and Psychology from Harvard, Helen takes a mindful approach to coaching her students so that they not only optimize their chances of admissions but also blossom into leaders and scholars. As a result, her students have launched podcasts, documentaries, clubs, and research projects that have enriched their communities, gaining them acceptance to Ivy+ universities like Stanford, Yale, Harvard, Columbia, UPenn, Northwestern, and more.
In addition to her work as an independent college advisor, Helen has served as an interviewer for the Gates Millennium Scholarship and InitialView; a conference proposal reviewer for the National Association for College Admission Counseling; and a member of the Harvard Alumni for Education. Helen graduated with honors from the University of Chicago as an Odyssey Scholar and Career in Public and Social Services Fellow. During her master’s studies at Harvard, she designed with a team a cross-cultural storytelling curriculum that won the Making Caring Common Dean’s Challenge. Passionate about honing her craft as a storyteller, Helen is currently drafting a memoir on her family’s experiences as Vietnamese boat people after the Fall of Saigon and first-generation immigrants in the U.S.
In her free time she loves exploring L.A.’s food scene with her husband (tacos are her favorite!) and indulging in Japanese animation.