Featured Test Prep Student: Jon Blust

September 23, 2013 
John Blust

Jon Blust
La Salle College High School
350-Point SAT Score Increase

Most people who know La Salle College High School Senior Jon Blust know that he’s a talented hockey player and avid sports fan. What some may not know is that he’s also a determined young man who finds time to squeeze in college preparation, volunteering, and travel.

When Jon’s mom started looking for SAT prep tutors, she knew Jon would want to work with someone close to home who was able to accommodate his busy schedule.

Speaking to a local grammar tutor, they learned that A+ Test Prep and Tutoring offered one-to-one SAT prep courses throughout the Philadelphia area. Jon was paired up with two tutors – Helga Vutz for verbal and Maggie Feinberg for math.

Jon says he enjoyed working with Helga on the writing portion because “she would just let me write, and afterwards we’d really perfect it.”

Helga recalls one practice essay where Jon expertly created an argument about why he was “looking forward to college and moving to a co-ed learning environment.” She also remembers his “good sense of humor about tackling the SAT reading portion.”

Maggie agrees that Jon was fun to work with. “He was always very engaged during our sessions and asked a lot of questions. He was never shy about telling me when he needed something explained a different way.”

Being open with his SAT prep tutors really paid off. With each session, his math skills improved, Maggie says. “Because he was so good at communicating what he needed from the course, we were able to really focus on the subjects that were difficult for him and skim over areas that he was already comfortable with.”

On test day, according to Jon, “I wasn’t really nervous. I just wanted to get it over, but it went by pretty quickly.”

He says he felt fully prepared to take all of the sections. “With A+, you take so many practice tests, you don’t really need to read all of the directions. You know exactly what to do and only need to worry about the question.”

From his work with Helga, Jon knew exactly how much time he had to spend on each part of his essay. For the math section, Jon remembered the tricks and formulas he practiced with Maggie. When he saw the problem, he’d think, “This is what I do, it’s the exact same problem, just different numbers.”

He also says he had a strategy for how many SAT questions he would answer, and how many he would skip, in order to help him get the best score possible. These strategies and hard work proved successful; Jon’s SAT scores improved 350 points from his first test.

After completing his college test prep and junior year, Jon spent the summer traveling the world and volunteering. For one of his trips, he traveled to Bolivia to do service work with other students from La Salle College High School. For the two-week trip the students built houses, painted churches, and repaired drywall.

Jon is considering applying to several colleges, including Temple University, West Chester University, Ithaca College, and Indiana University of Pennsylvania. Join us in wishing Jon the best of luck on the ice, in his last year of high school, and with his college applications!


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