Meet Our College Counselors
Director of College Counseling
Ms. Phillips arrived at Saint Mary’s in 2011. She is the Director of College Counseling and lives on campus as a member of the residential faculty. After graduating from Wyoming Seminary, an independent day/boarding high school, she studied philosophy and political science at Saint Michael’s College in Burlington, Vermont, earning her B.A. in 2001. In 2008, she earned her Master’s in Education at the University of Vermont. Ms. Phillips was drawn to Saint Michael’s for the amazing college town of Burlington, but also for the Division II field hockey program where she was a senior captain, 2nd team All-American, and lead the team to its first appearance in the NCAA D-II final four. She worked in college admissions for eight years (2001-2009) at both of her alma mater’s before moving to the other side of the desk as a college counselor at a Williston Northampton, a boarding school in Massachusetts, where she was also dorm head, academic testing coordinator, and field hockey and ice hockey coach.
Ms. Phillips is passionate about the ever-evolving field of college admissions and enjoys working with students and families as they navigate the college search and application processes. She is a member of the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC), the Southern Association for College Admission Counseling (SACAC), the Association for College Counseling at Independent Schools (ACCIS), and enjoys regional involvement with professional organizations, including the Raleigh National College Fair Committee. She is currently completing a Graduate Certificate in Counselor Education at North Carolina State University.
At Saint Mary’s, Ms. Phillips is a member of the Academic Leadership Team and serves as a faculty representative on the Judicial Board. She is a member of the Penick Dorm Staff and lives on campus with her daughter and cavalier King Charles spaniel. When she has free time, she can be found spending it with her daughter, training for her next half marathon, or drinking coffee. You can find her office in Lower Smedes.
Ruth Morrongiello joined the College Counseling office in August 2018 as the Associate Director. She is very excited to be part of the Saint Mary’s School community. She grew up in New York and moved to Raleigh from the Bronx after being an interim middle school counselor in the Westchester County School District. She has had six years of college admission experience and recently worked at Manhattan College in Riverdale, N.Y. for three years as a senior assistant director of college admissions and financial aid. She also was an admissions counselor at Hartwick College and Mount Saint Mary College in New York. While in admissions, Ms. Morrongiello traveled throughout the Northeast recruiting prospective students and speaking to families about the college process. She received her Master’s in School Counseling (Manhattan College, N.Y.) and Bachelor's from Muhlenberg College (Allentown, Penn.). She also earned her CASAC (Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor).
Ms. Morrongiello is a residential faculty member in Cruikshank Hall with her two lovely cats, Morgan and Nala. In her free time, she loves to travel and explore new restaurants, museums, parks, and enjoys playing sports. Her office is located in Lower Smedes.
Ms. Lee is very excited to join Saint Mary’s as a college counselor after having experienced all the school has to offer from a parent’s perspective. After receiving her Graduate Certificate in College Counseling from UCLA, she worked in college counseling at another independent school in Raleigh for several years. She completed her undergraduate studies in psychology at Davidson College, an MBA at Duke University, and has held various positions in corporate banking, brand marketing, and project management with different organizations. Her educational journey—from a small liberal arts college to a mid-sized research university and a large research institution’s online program—has been pivotal in her life. So, bringing learned, transferable skills from her corporate experiences to the education field has felt like coming home.
When she’s not thinking, reading, or talking about education and the college process, Ms. Lee enjoys watching her son play soccer, Face-Timing with her daughter (Saint Mary's Class of 2017), and imagining life as an empty-nester with her husband. In addition, she can be found working out and trying to practice mindfulness in her life. You can find her office in Lower Smedes.