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Carley Nuzzo

Ph.D. Political Science: International Relations & Foreign Policy

Harvard University & UCLA

B.A. Political Science

University of Alabama


College Counseling

Graduate Counseling

Undergraduate Mentorship

Dr. Carley Nuzzo is a college counselor and ESM Prep's Director of Undergraduate Mentorship. She has a lifelong passion to help students realize their highest potential and achieve their goals.

As a college counselor, Carley provides families with individualized and data-driven strategies based on the most recent trends and school-specific policies in ED/EA decisions, deferrals, testing, demonstrated interest, waitlists, and program selection. Carley’s advice is informed by her distinguished and nationally recognized research career in data analysis and strategic decision making. Through this proven method and her approachable mentorship style, Carley successfully guides her students desiring to attend selective universities to ultimately gain admission to the nation’s top schools.

As an undergraduate mentor, Carley is dedicated to each of her students, attuning her approach to each individual’s needs and personality. ‍She prioritizes forming close relationships with students and partnering with them to make the most of their college experience through regular support, specialized expertise and detailed guidance.  

Carley earned a full academic scholarship to the University of Alabama and graduated summa cum laude three years later. She then accepted a graduate scholarship to work with the nation’s top scholars at Harvard University. Following her tenure at Harvard, Carley was admitted to UCLA’s doctoral program. Her scholarly work there was funded by numerous prestigious grants and fellowships, including the National Science Foundation Fellowship. Carley has taught at UCLA, Loyola Marymount University, and Saddleback College, and has developed original courses as well as co-curricular programs. Through these diverse experiences, she discovered her greatest impact on students was through personalized mentorship. She loves helping students develop their unique abilities, highlight their distinct narratives, and ultimately realize their dreams.

When she is not working with students, she is most likely found at the beach with her husband and two young daughters, Isla and Nina. She loves to cook, swim in the ocean, watch football, and travel—often nerding out while visiting historic sites and experiencing different cultures.


"I just wanted to send a wee thank you to those who have helped me get to where I am today and added a bit of fun along the way–and one of the first people to pop into my head was you! I remember having some of the greatest laughs: hearing how your husband has a worm composting bin outside the house, both agreeing on how horrible a sentence was, […] and the act of simply sitting down to talk about life and edit some essays. You were always so passionate about making sure my application was the best that it could be and I always knew I could trust you to just lay things on the table and tell me if something was great or a load of cow's dung–something I needed in order to feel confident in what I was submitting. You made me feel that I was needed during the whole process and I felt respected as an editor on a team of two writers whose weird ideas somehow made good essays. I look up to you as such a well-rounded woman who can care for her family, be a genius, have good humor, and honestly just be badass! […] I appreciate you helping me and giving me the courage to step outside the box and realize that I can become whatever I want to be.”

"I can’t say it enough how terrific you have been with my daughter. She really loves working with you and has a much more positive attitude about her ability to succeed since you started together. We're so appreciative. It’s the perfect combo of a smart, older sister who has her best interests at heart but can also push her. And it's been my pleasure to recommend you—you’ve earned it!"

Emra Mehmedovic

Western Kentucky University

B.A. English (Creative Writing concentration) and Film

Services Offered

Academic Mentorship

Essay Coaching

Joined ESM in

Josh Davis

Yale University

B.A. History

Services Offered

College Counseling

Joined ESM in


Dara Arad

University of East Anglia

B.A. Literature and Creative Writing

UC Berkeley

Services Offered

Academic Mentorship

Essay Coaching

Joined ESM in


Lawrence Anicete

Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology

B.S. Mechanical Engineering

University of California, Davis


Services Offered

Academic Mentorship

College Counseling

Test Prep

Joined ESM in


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