Elm Tree Press: Academic Support at LA

By Kerri Murphy ’19

When I first came to Lawrence Academy, I was unsure what to think about the Academic Support program and what it meant to have a learning coach.

Before starting at LA, I fought my parents about needing the program but settled on meeting with my learning coach one time per week. However, my preconceived perception of the learning support at LA couldn’t be more different than the reality.

And, after having a learning coach for all four years I have been at Lawrence Academy, I now wish I could bring the program to college with me next year.


During coaching blocks, the student dictates what they want to work on during that time. Therefore, it is an excellent time to do any tough homework with your learning coach’s assistance. They are willing and wanting to help you with any problems you may encounter – whether it is planning out a history essay or reading an English assignment out loud to go over the meaning of each paragraph of prose.

Having a learning coach is like being able to ask your English teacher to take a look at your work before she grades it, or having someone willing to quiz you on Spanish vocabulary for 30-minutes until you have memorized each new word. Even if it is not an essay that I planned to do with my learning coach, I can still send it to her for a grammar and punctuation check, along with making sure the information flows correctly.

Each week, I look forward to meeting with my coach. First, we talk about my schedule, and I then tell her what I hope to accomplish during the block. During each meeting, I continuously find myself smiling and laughing, and I leave at the end of the block feeling accomplished, with a solid plan to stay on top of my work.


In short: Learning coaches and the LA Academic Support Office are there assist you! The office picks your coach based on your specific needs and personality to find the match that will lead to the best and most productive results.

They are all very knowledgeable in many different subjects, and they want to share their knowledge with each student. They take their job personally, genuinely care, and will do anything to help you succeed during your time at LA and beyond.

Not only has my learning coach helped me with my school work, but she has also helped me make sound academic decisions throughout my time at LA.

She encourages me to take challenging classes, giving me the confidence that I will succeed.

She has not yet been wrong…