Meet our Counselors
At Great College Fit, we specialize in creating a personalized admission strategy for every student.
Today’s college applicant must be strategic and thoughtful as they navigate through college admissions. We believe that students must be active participants in the college admissions process. There is no “one right college” but there is a RIGHT way to approach college admissions.
Amy Mendelson, M.Ed., President
Born and raised in Orange County, CA, Amy’s entire professional career has been spent working in education. She holds a Certificate in College Counseling (UCSD) and is a professional member of the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) and a member of the Western Association for College Admission Counseling (WACAC). She is a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) and recently became a Certified Educational Planner, which is the highest level of professional certification available in the field of college counseling.
Amy completed her undergraduate degree at UC Berkeley, where she earned a Bachelor Degree in English. After earning her single subject teaching credential, she taught high school English for nine years. In 1997, after earning a Master’s Degree in Education, she moved from the classroom to the front office, serving on the administration teams at two local high schools. As president of Great College Fit, LLC, Amy’s mission is to help young people achieve their higher education aspirations through delivering personalized private college counseling.
She is married to her best friend, Scott Mendelson, who is the Activities Director at RSM Intermediate School. She enjoys shopping, traveling, reading and hanging out with her two daughters.
During my 16 years as a high school educator, I realized that students weren’t getting the guidance they needed to apply to college. They were left to their own devices at a very critical time in their lives. By founding Great College Fit, I was able to develop a personalized program to support students and families so that getting into college wasn’t so daunting.
Jessica Holtrust, M.S., School Counseling and Leadership
Jessica has a passion for helping students and families navigate the daunting and complex college application process. After attending high school in Mission Viejo, California, she graduated with honors from California State University, Fullerton, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Child and Adolescent Development. She went on to earn a Master’s Degree in School Counseling and Leadership from California State University, Los Angeles, where she graduated at the top of her class. While working as a college counselor at an Orange County high school, Jessica developed and implemented an original College Admissions Workshop series. Jessica is passionate about giving back to the community through advising Orange County teenagers as they search for the right college fit.
I remember struggling with the college admissions process, and wishing there was someone who could help me. Helping today’s students get through the process with less stress and more confidence is very fulfilling to me personally.
Tom LeCarner, PhD.
Tom LeCarner brings over a decade of higher education experience to Great College Fit. After earning his B.A. in English from the University of California, Irvine, Tom went on to attend Gonzaga University School of Law. After passing the California Bar Exam, Tom practiced business litigation law for several years before founding The 180° Group, a successful consulting firm in Beverly Hills, California. No longer able to ignore the calling to teach, however, Tom decided to return to graduate school to pursue a career in education. After completing his M.A. in English at Loyola Marymount University, Tom was accepted into the doctoral program in English at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where he earned a Ph.D. in English literature in 2014. Dr. LeCarner is an award-winning teacher who has taught at the university level for twelve years, and served as an Advanced Placement reader for The College Board for five years. Dr. LeCarner brings a unique, insider perspective to Great College Fit families as he works with them to demystify the college admission process. Dr. LeCarner is a member of RMACAC, the Rocky Mountain Association for College Admissions Counseling.
Having spent over a decade in higher education, I am thrilled to have the opportunity to share my expertise and “insider’s perspective” with Great College Fit families. I am all too familiar with the anxieties students experience during the admissions process, and I look forward to helping to ease that anxiety.