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Kirsten Hanson-Press

College Counselor


Meet Kirsten Hanson-Press

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Before joining Collegewise, Kirsten was the executive director of the Parents Education League of Los Angeles, a non-profit organization that helps parents navigate the often bumpy road of school choice in Los Angeles. She still serves as a board and advisory member. A popular speaker in Los Angeles schools and community rooms, Kirsten is passionate about making the search for educational fit less stressful and more accessible. While education has been a lifelong interest and topic of her studies at UCLA, Kirsten also spent over a decade as a commercial and music video producer for many projects including the infamous final music video for Biggie Smalls.

Needless to say, if you need help navigating the admissions process, Kirsten can expertly and patiently guide you towards the right choice. Her students have recently found their college homes at Georgetown, Berkeley, UCLA, Wesleyan, Barnard, USC, Stanford, Duke, Cornell, NYU, Carnegie Mellon, Washington University, Michigan, Oberlin, Santa Clara, Wisconsin, George Washington, Purdue, Sarah Lawrence, SMU, and Oregon. In fact, now that the word is out about Kirsten's expertise in the world of college admissions, families typically enroll early in high school to ensure that they get a spot on her roster.

Education & Experience

  • Former Executive Director, Parents Education League of Los Angeles
  • Successful career as a film commercial and music video producer
  • Member of National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC)
  • Member of Western Association for College Admission Counseling (WACAC)

Professional Organization Memberships

Contact Kirsten Hanson-Press

What are people saying about Collegewise?

Kirsten is the college counselor of your dreams! She's got it all. She held my daughter's hand and held her accountable—not an easy feat, but one Kirsten manages perfectly! We cannot recommend her more highly and now consider her part of the family! Rarely do you find the combination of warmth, professionalism, and drive that Kirsten offers!

Robin Finn, Parent of Miranda Hyman

Wesleyan University

Kirsten was terrific! She was encouraging, supportive and wise. She made the whole experience manageable and kept my son on track and focused. She was always available to check in with and she’s super nice with a positive vibe. Thank you, Kirsten. You navigated us through the whole experience effortlessly.

Maggie Kish, Parent of William Kish

Cal Poly SLO

It was actually Kirsten who introduced me to the school I would end up attending. Kirsten helped me to better understand myself and the type of school I wanted. Through Collegewise, I was able to write an essay that I was proud of, and I received help in navigating the crazy world that is college applications.

Bianca Lambert

Georgetown University

Kirsten helped me figure out what I really want to get out of my college experience and provided me with the tools to make it a reality. I learned more about different colleges and ways of thinking about the college process than I could have done without Collegewise. Thank you!

Arianna Cooper

Skidmore College

Kirsten was a means of constant support for Ella during an incredibly stressful process. Kirsten really got Ella because she made a point to do so. Kirsten had her back and she knew it. I could go on and on and on. Ella got into 12 of the 16 schools she applied to, and it’s absolutely because she is an exceptional person, but it was also Kirsten who helped her reach this amazing goal.

Wendy Weitz, Parent of Ella Kopeikin

University of Edinburgh

Kirsten was the most helpful and resourceful person I have ever worked with. Her upbeat attitude and knowledge about the application process was very encouraging, and she navigated through that process with ease. When I faced challenges, her positive attitude continued to instill a sense of dedication in me and in my work.

Sam Goodman

Emerson College