aLLISON w. mATLACK, m.a.t.


 Allison W. Matlack, M.A.T. has devoted her professional life to working with independent school students and helping them to find personal success. Before opening the doors of Matlack Educational Consulting 2015,  she was a consultant with AHP Educational Consulting  for 12 years where she helped guide students and their families through the independent school and college planning processes. Allison began her career teaching English at Westtown School in Pennsylvania where she also served as swim coach, dorm head, associate dean of students, and college counselor.

Allison graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Bates College and received a Master of Arts in Teaching from Tufts University. Currently, Allison is deeply involved in IECA, the national professional organization for educational consultants, and sits on the Board of Directors as VP for Education and Training. She served as the Chair of the Schools Committee for IECA from 2016 – 2017 and is a member of the faculty for the IECA Summer Training Institute. She also sits on the Advisory Board for Verto Education and the Advisory Council for the Boys and Girls Clubs of Lawrence.

In her free time, she and her husband enjoy gardening, biking, and travel. Her daughter teaches French and coaches the Girls’ Varsity Soccer team at a boarding school in New Hampshire and her son is a senior at Dickinson College where he is majoring in Studio Art and enjoying playing on the Ultimate Frisbee team.


Brennan E. Barnard, M.Ed.


A graduate of Westtown Friends School, Brennan E. Barnard earned a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and Spanish from Franklin & Marshall College and a master’s degree in Higher Education and Student Affairs Administration from The University of Vermont. He is currently the Director of College Counseling and Public Relations at The Derryfield School in Manchester, New Hampshire and also serves serves as the College as the College Admissions Program Manager for Harvard’s Making Caring Common Project.   

Brennan has worked as teacher, coach, admission officer and student affairs administrator at a number of independent high schools and colleges, including Westtown School, Northfield Mount Hermon School, Hyde School, Franklin & Marshall College, and the University of Vermont.  He has served as a college counselor for the St. Paul’s School Advanced Studies Program and the Royal Thai Scholars program at Brewster Academy. He is also a Senior Fellow at the Global Studies Foundation and off-site college counselor for The Monteverde Friends School in Costa Rica.

Brennan authored a year-long column in Concord, New Hampshire’s Sunday Monitor that helped parents and students navigate the sometimes confusing world of applying to college. In addition, he is a regular contributor to Forbes, the New York Times, and the Washington Post. A three-year, elected member of the College Board’s New England Regional Council, Brennan is also a member of The Lakes Region Independent School Counselor Association, The Association of College Counselors in Independent Schools and the National (NACAC) and New England (NEACAC) Associations of College Admission Counselors which named him Counselor of the Year in 2018. This father of two lives in Hopkinton, New Hampshire. Email Brennan.

CAROL KINLAN, M.Ed, m.b.a.

Carol Kinlan is our senior educational consultant and comes to Matlack Educational Consulting from The Perkins School for the Blind in Watertown, Massachusetts, where she has served as Director of Enrollment and Evaluations since 2016. Prior to that, Carol was an educational consultant with McMillan Education in Boston for five years.  Other past experience includes her work as Director of Learning Resources at the Shady Hill School in Cambridge, MA and Learning Coordinator at the Dedham Country Day School in Dedham, MA. She has also worked at The Institute for Learning and Development (ILD) in Lexington, MA, where she conducted neuropsychological assessments and tutored students with weaknesses in reading comprehension, written expression and executive function skills. Carol has a master’s degree from the Harvard University Graduate School of Education’s Mind, Brain and Education Department, an M.B.A. in Marketing from Boston University and an undergraduate degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts in Amherst, MA. She currently serves on the Board of Visitors for The Fenn School in Concord, MA and on the Board of Trustees at The Learning Prep School in West Newton, MA. Email Carol.

Gayle schafer


Gayle has extensive admissions experience in both New England boarding schools and college.  A graduate of the UNH Whittemore School of Business and Economics, Gayle began her career in technology sales and marketing in Greater Boston, calling Middlesex School, where her husband worked, home for 10 years. When he took the job as Head of School at Kimball Union Academy, Gayle joined the admissions office there as Assistant Director of Admissions and Admissions Marketing and Communications Director during a period of remarkable growth and success for the school. Most recently, Gayle worked in the Office of Admission and Financial Aid at Dartmouth College and is excited to see applications from the other side of the desk.


Deeply committed to boarding school life and as a parent of three grown children, Gayle has been involved with support organizations in many school communities including Fay School, Cardigan Mountain School, Colby College. and Bates College. When she is not working on behalf of a school or college, she enjoys traveling with her family, playing tennis, and reading.

 In each of her roles, Gayle has nurtured and supported students and families from around the globe through the application and transition process to independent school and college. She looks forward to helping students confidently navigate the school search process and find academic environments that will give them joy and purpose. Email Gayle.


Martha has over a decade of experience working with students and parents at the independent secondary school level. She has advised, coached, provided residential support, and guided hundreds of families from around the world through the admissions process. Martha served as an Associate Director of Athletics at Deerfield Academy before finding her admissions role at Northfield Mount Hermon in 2010. There, she found her passion for helping students realize their full potential through educational opportunities.

Martha graduated from Bay Path University and completed the UCLA College Counseling Certificate program with distinction. She is an Associate Member of the Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) and the New England Association for College Admission Counseling (NEACAC). In 2017 she attended Summer Institutes and tours dozens of college and university campuses each year. Currently, Martha is very involved on the Schools Committee for IECA.

Outside of work, Martha is a parent of three nearly grown children who have all attended four-year liberal arts institutions in New England. College visits became a way of life for several consecutive summers, and touring campuses with her children sparked Martha’s desire to continue this journey with other college-bound students. Martha is committed to using her knowledge of the higher education landscape to add significant value to students’ college exploration processes. Email Martha.

Martha Seretta.jpg