Interview with Jack Shull

If you ever want to find an accomplished man, you can stop your search right in the backyard of our Suzhou school. Our Director of University Counselling Jack Shull definitely has one robust resume tucked under his arm! Jack has worked at four American/International Schools during the past 25 years as a counsellor and as Director of Counselling and Special Services. He started his overseas career at the American School in Stavanger, Norway, relocated to St. John's International School in Belgium, and then again to the International School Bangkok (ISB) over a span of ten years, and spent the next 16 years working at Cairo American College (CAC) before arriving in Dulwich College Suzhou as a counsellor. Jack has given multiple presentations at international conferences on the topics of advising college bound students, Crisis Management in International Schools, and effective K to 12 Guidance Programs. In addition, he has written articles on college admissions, and developed programs and workshops for high school students who wish to study in North America and the United Kingdom. Not one to skive, Mr. Shull has been an active member of the National Association of College Admissions Counselling (NACAC), serving on many committees including the Technology Committee. He is the past president of the Overseas Association of College Admissions (OACAC) and one of the founding members of that organization. Jack has been an adjunct faculty member at George Mason University in Virginia where he taught a graduate course in 'International School Counselling' and the American University in Cairo teaching in the Graduate School of Education program. He is presently an active member of the American Counselling Association (ACAC). Here at Dulwich, Jack busies himself counselling and advising DCSZ students about college in North America. It is his conviction that a long-term approach should be taken, stressing academics as a fundamental while students are in Years 7-9 and encouraging students to be actively involved in activities outside the classroom in order to successfully gain acceptance into a good North American college. From his experience, Jack believes that majority of students will apply to the US as it is home to the widest range of universities. However, not all students are sufficiently-prepared for the standardized testing they will undergo, an imperative since the US does not have a national curriculum. Students in international schools who complete the IB do not lose out in any way, as the IB, contrary to popular belief, is actually a highly-accepted certificate in the US. Apparently, colleges in the US put great emphasis on the human element during the admissions process, requesting counsellor and teacher recommendations. When Informed probed Jack on changes to the academic scene over the past 30 years since he started his career, he replied that colleges have grown significantly more selective due to increasing populations, such that they do not exclude international students. Counsellers, like himself, help students enter the college of their choice and guide them along in making the right decisions for their path of studies, career, and ultimately, life. Jack holds a B.S. in Psychology and Education, a M.S. in Counseling and Guidance, and an Ed.S in Education Administration with a concentration in Leadership.