Head of School letter: SSIS has best University Acceptances in School History

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Dear SSIS Parents,

Although the university acceptance season continues in some countries (Korea, Australia, Singapore), the majority of SSIS Seniors have already received multiple university acceptances, and I am delighted to report that the Class of 2019 continues the SSIS tradition of receiving impressive offers from the best schools around the world, with this year being a new record high.

Not only have our students been accepted to top schools around the world (e.g. Cornell, Stanford, Tufts, Princeton University, Dartmouth College, University of Pennsylvania, University of Sydney, University of Melbourne, Northwestern University, Wellesley College, Carnegie Mellon, Georgetown University, Rochester Institute of Technology,  Hong Kong University, McGill University, University of Toronto, KAIST, and Seoul National University), the majority of students have been accepted into their top program of choice at these universities. This success is a result of many factors: students have worked hard over many years, supported by their parents; students were well prepared intellectually and personally at SSIS by following an academically challenging and balanced program; students accurately assessed “best fit” universities for themselves; and students received excellent guidance from our University Guidance Counselors.

The SSIS mission states that we are a “college preparatory” school. It is our goal that every student receive acceptance into the best university that is the best fit for him/her, and we have certainly achieved that goal with the Class of 2019. From observing their extra-curricular activities, their service orientation, and their social interactions,  I also believe that we have prepared them well for a “purposeful life as a global citizen,” and I look forward to observing their future impact on Vietnam and the world.

Best University, Best Fit

Due to the innovative counseling model in our high school, where we have a dedicated social/emotional counselor in addition to two dedicated and experienced university counselors, we help students every step of the way with their university dreams. From drafting essays to evaluating strengths and challenges, working with teachers on letters of recommendation, and helping students make their best application possible, our counselors are able to spend one-on-one time with each student ensuring their university success. The only way we can be so successful in the university process at SSIS is by focusing on “fit” for students. That’s where everything comes together, their academic, financial, geographical, and social needs are met with a list of universities to apply to. We know that if a student finds the right fit, they will be successful–and we were successful this year! We had students apply to 14 countries with 207 acceptances so far. All of these schools know that SSIS students will be successful and thrive on their campuses which is why they were offered a spot in their first-year class.

We are very proud of our university guidance counselors who continue to work hard on outreach and networking with the best universities around the world. Ms. Braun and Mr. Foster have presented at multiple international conferences, hosted over 250 universities a year, and hosted multiple presentations on the SSIS campus. Presentations included but are not limited to: Study in Hong Kong, Hanyang University, Study in the California State University System, What Kind of Starbucks Coffee Are You? (finding your right university fit), Yonsei University (2), SKKU, Unitalks, Financial Aid for International Students, Liberal Arts, University Information Evenings for 10/11/12, Summer Opportunities, and many more.

The Year Ahead

The University Guidance Office continues to support Grade 11 students and parents through Unitalks, Principal Coffees, and evening information sessions. I am glad to see that these sessions are well attended by students and parents. There is also an increased focus on preparing Grade 8 students for the HS experience and in thinking ahead to colleges. We are excited to host the University Fair and Conference Saigon 2019 on September 28, 2019, where we expect 100 universities from all over the world.

Some Additional Data Re College Acceptances 2019 (data accurate as of 3 May 2019)

  • 60 applications were submitted for Early Decision (ED), Early Action (EA) or Restrictive  Early Decision (REA) to USA universities. This is a 40% increase from last year.
  • Of the 25 total students who applied early (approximately 30% of the senior class), 21 Students were accepted for ED/ED/REA in the USA.
  • 50 of the 87 students from Class of 2019 (57%) applied to at least one school in the United States.
  • 3 students were accepted to Seoul National University (SNU) and 2 students were accepted to KAIST. These acceptances are unprecedented at our school. We are the only international school that has achieved these acceptances in one year.
  • The five countries with the most acceptances are as follows: United States (143), Canada (37), the Netherlands (14), Australia (9), and Hong Kong (8).
  • Our students applied to 14 different countries with a total of 207 acceptances.

Below, please find the listing of all of the wonderful universities around the world where our students have succeeded in gaining acceptance this year.  Congratulations to these excellent students and these fine young people. Good luck to the students awaiting results! And congratulations to the SSIS University Guidance Counselors Kelly Braun and Jemison Foster who have provided exemplary guidance to our Class of 2019.

University Acceptance (multiple acceptances)
American University (2) Seoul National University
Amsterdam University College (2) Seoul National University (3)
Ateneo de Manila University Simon Fraser University (2)
Baylor University Sophia University
Beloit College St. John’s University
Bentley University (2) Stanford University
Binghamton University Stony Brook University (2)
Blue Mountains International Hotel Management School Suffolk University
Boston University (3) Syracuse University
California College of the Arts Temple University
California State Polytechnic University – Pomona The George Washington University (2)
Carnegie Mellon University The Ohio State University
Chinese University of Hong Kong (2) The University of Arizona (2)
City University of Hong Kong The University of Edinburgh
Clemson University The University of Manchester
Cologne Business School (2) The University of Melbourne
Colorado State University Tilburg University
Cornell University (2) Tufts University
Dartmouth College Universidad Anahuac
DePaul University Universiteit van Amsterdam (2)
Drexel University (5) University College London
Erasmus Universiteit Rotterdam (2) University College Tilburg
Erasmus University College University of British Columbia (12)
Fairleigh Dickinson University University of Calgary (2)
Fordham University (3) University of California, Berkeley (5)
Furman University University of California, Davis (4)
Georgetown University University of California, Irvine (2)
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (2) University of California, Los Angeles (5)
Hult International Business School (3) University of California, Riverside
Imperial College London University of California, San Diego (3)
Indiana University at Bloomington (6) University of California, Santa Barbara (2)
Jacobs University University of California, Santa Cruz
John Cabot University University of Chicago
KAIST – Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (2) University of Cincinnati
La Salle University University of Colorado at Boulder
Leiden University College The Hague (3) University of Connecticut
Lesley University University of Georgia
Macquarie University University of Hong Kong (4)
Manhattan College University of Illinois at Chicago (2)
Maryland Institute College of Art (2) University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (2)
McGill University (2) University of Massachusetts, Amherst (4)
McMaster University University of Michigan
Miami University, Oxford University of Newcastle
New York Institute of Technology University of Oregon
New York University (2) University of Pennsylvania
Northeastern University (2) University of Pittsburgh
Northwestern University University of San Diego
Oregon State University, Cascades University of San Francisco (4)
Pace University, New York City (3) University of South Florida, Tampa
Pennsylvania State University (2) University of Southern California (3)
Pepperdine University University of Sydney
Pratt Institute University of Sydney (2)
Princeton University University of Technology Sydney
Purdue University (2) University of Toronto (5)
Queen’s University (2) University of Virginia
Quest University Canada University of Washington (2)
Rochester Institute of Technology (5) University of Waterloo (5)
Rollins College University of Wisconsin, Madison (2)
Rutgers University-New Brunswick UNSW Australia (2)
School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2) Wageningen Universiteit
School of Visual Arts Waseda University
Seattle University (2) Washington State University
Seoul National University Wellesley College
York University (5)


All good wishes,

Dr. Catriona Moran
Head of School