Holly Burks Becker
Holly Burks Becker, along with colleague Jeff Durso-Finley, serves as Lawrenceville’s Co-Director of College Counseling. Together, they are responsible for strategic planning and program development for Lawrenceville’s college counseling curriculum. They also serve on the School’s Senior Staff for daily operations and long-term strategic directions, manage College Counseling office personnel, and oversee the departmental budget. Burks Becker and Durso-Finley work together to educate appropriate constituencies on all matters relating to college admission and college counseling, as well as secondary school influences on both admission and counseling.
As a College Counselor, Burks Becker educates Lawrenceville juniors and seniors on the college admission and application process, developing professional expertise on topics including:
- Admission Plans and Post-Secondary Policy
- Financial Aid: Need and Merit Based
- Transfer Admission Policy
- Athletic Recruiting
- Standardized Testing
- Specialized Scholarship Programs
- Application Writing (Essays, supplements, etc.)
- International University Admission
- Art, Music, and Drama Portfolio Support
- Specialized Application Programs
As a Lawrenceville faculty member, Burks Becker serves on the residential life team at Stephens House (and has since it opened in 1987) for matters relating to academic advising, course scheduling, student support, and House supervision. Her athletic responsibilities include coaching girls’ varsity field hockey and acting as Co-Director (with Durso-Finley) of Lawrenceville’s annual Big Red Race (a fundraiser for the School Camp). Burks Becker has served on both Lawrenceville’s Transition to Coeducational Planning and Trustee Steering Committee on Coeducation.
Burks Becker holds a B.A. in history from Dartmouth College. She was a four-year member of both the women’s varsity field hockey and lacrosse teams. She captained the field hockey squad and was an All-Ivy First Team honoree. Upon graduation, Burks Becker received Dartmouth’s Agnes B. Kurtz Award honoring “the woman who best combines excellence in athletics and overall contribution to Dartmouth women’s athletics.”
Burks Becker has presented at conferences around the country on topics including: Application and essay construction, student stress and adolescent psychology, generational sociology, national financial aid policy, athletic recruiting in the 21st century, and others. She is a contributing author and editor of second edition of Durso-Finley’s book. “Understanding Athletic Recruiting” [UMI (1st Ed, 2006); 2nd Ed. 2014), w/Lewis Stival, Blair Academy].
Both Burks Becker and Durso-Finley are members of the Association of College Counselors in Independent Schools (of which Lawrenceville was a founding school). They are also members of the National Association for College Admission Counseling, the Southern Association for College Admission Counseling, the New Jersey Association for College Admission Counseling, Association of Boarding Schools, and the National Association of Independent Schools.
Before joining the Lawrenceville faculty in 1985, Burks Becker was the Assistant to the Director of Admission at Dartmouth where she recruited, interviewed, and evaluated prospective students as a member of the college’s admission committee.