Pennington School announces appointment of college counseling director

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Adam Materasso

An increase in enrollment at the Pennington School pivots increased focus on the college search process, according to William S. Hawkey, head of the school.

With that focus, the school, after a national search, will welcome Adam Materasso as director of college counseling effective July 1.

“Adam’s deep experience as a school leader as well as his involvement in the Association of College Counselors at Independent Schools (ACCIS) will guide us as we strengthen our program further. It is evident to me that he is highly respected by his independent school peers, and I am delighted about the many ways in which Adam will help us continue to elevate our programming,” Hawkey said in a press release.

Materasso arrives at Pennington after a 19-year tenure at Ranney School in Tinton Falls. His most recent role was dean of enrollment management and college counseling. He was a member of the school’s senior leadership team and board of trustees, responsible for the enrollment, recruitment and retention of students.

Previously he served as associate head of upper school, dean of students and as a college counselor. He also worked as director of student activities, associate director of summer programs, class dean and as an upper school Spanish teacher, according to the release.

Materasso was a key member of Ranney’s strategic planning committee, and he was a member of the school’s academic council. At one time or another, he was involved in almost every aspect of Ranney’s institution.

He earned a bachelor’s degree in Spanish from Drew University and earned a master’s degree in private school leadership from the Klingenstein Center at Teachers College, Columbia University.

Materasso is fluent in Spanish, French and Italian.

“I am thrilled to be joining the Pennington community during such an exciting time. My first goal is to get to know the entire school community. Forging close relationships is
critical to the work I do as a college counselor,” he said.

Materasso’s appointment is a result of an important strategic decision to expand Pennington’s college counseling office in order to better serve all of its Upper School students. Four other members of Pennington’s college counseling office will report to Materasso, who reports directly to the head of school as part of the senior leadership team, according to the release.

The Pennington School is an independent coeducational school for students in grades 6 through 12, in both day and boarding programs. The curriculum is college preparatory, with an emphasis on individual excellence, fostering the development of the whole student through academics, athletics, community service and the creative and performing arts.