Main Line

An essay writing camp for rising high school seniors.
2024 is our 12th year!

Write a stunning essay

JumpStart Main Line provides students with the support and resources to help them write an outstanding essay. We help students with idea generation and theme development.

Write your own essay

We won't write your essay for you, but we will help you make it sharp! We will help unleash your potential.


We help make the college essay writing process a stress-free and enjoyable learning experience. Each Zoom classroom has a 4:1 student-teacher ratio.

Draft and polish

We believe in process writing. Our model involves multiple one-on-one conferences for each student.


Our conferences go beyond copy-editing. Our feedback will push you to do the best work you can do.

Your Teachers

We are passionate teachers with years of experience.

Paul Wright

2011 Pennsylvania Teacher-of-the-Yr Finalist

31 years MS/HS Social Studies/Interdisciplinary

17 years writing/college-essay tutoring

Carl Rosin

2014 National Philosophy Teacher of the Year

27 years HS English/Interdisciplinary teacher

19 years writing/college-essay tutoring including 6+ years in RHS Writing Center

TJ Neary

25 years HS English/Interdisciplinary teacher (Radnor HS)

MA in Literature, 8 years teaching writing on the college level

13 years tutoring college-essay writers including 9+ years in RHS Writing Center

Adam Udell

27 years HS Social Studies teacher of Government and Philosophy (Octorara HS)

Adjunct professor

6 years as content specialist for National Board for Professional Teaching Standards


Kaitlyn McCool

13 years HS English teacher (Haverford HS)

8 years working with college-essay writers

4 years teaching SAT prep


Some questions that students and parents ask frequently.

Where are JumpStart sessions held?

The pandemic shifted us from in-person classes to online Zoom, and we found that Zoom was both more convenient and more effective for our clients. We are building on our experience with Zoom over the past four years: we have Zoomed with almost 400 students since the start of the pandemic and are confident that this will continue to work well in the future. The success of your essay remains our promise and our priority.

What work will be accomplished at JumpStart Main Line?

Students come to Zoom class on Day 1 with nothing. We take you through introductions to this type of writing, some examples, and idea-generation exercises, and then you write and conference, conference and write.

During in-person classes (2013-2019), over 75% of our students left after one week with their Common App essay completed. The remaining 25% were able to email with us until the end of July with questions and revisions. For the summers (starting in 2020) on Zoom, the first-week completion rate rose to almost 85%. Conferences occur one-on-one in Zoom breakout rooms, mainly over shared online documents.

We still expect that a student who focuses on their essay can have a complete, edited document ready by the end of the four-day session. If it takes a little longer, we will of course continue to work with you, if necessary, over the next 1-2 weeks to make sure the essay is done to your satisfaction.

What if I am applying to a non-Common App college?

JumpStart’s teachers will work with you on a college essay of your choice –- the Common App is simply the most...well, common. Well-named, as it turns out! Schools that do not use the Common App often require a personal statement or offer another prompt that is very similar to one of the Common App prompts. We have had students complete non-Common App essays every year, including those for the (relatively new) Coalition for Access, Affordability, and Success.

What are the hours for the course?

Morning sessions start at 9:00 a.m.; evening sessions start at 4:30 p.m. Expect approximately 90 minutes on instruction and topic-generation exercises on Day 1, followed by individual conferences with each student; expect approximately 60 minutes on instruction and strategy on Day 2, followed by individual conferences with each student; after that, one-on-one conferences will keep happening until the essay is done.

This is an iterative process, for which we plan several loops of writing, feedback, editing/writing, feedback, editing/writing, etc. At 2.5 hours per day for four days, the session lasts a total of 10 hours.

What are the dates for the course?

    SUMMER 2024: Scheduled sessions will be held in late June, early July, and early August. Students from all schools are welcome to attend!

  • Session 1: June 17 (Monday) - 20 (Thursday) evenings 4:30-7:00 p.m. for Zoom and conferencing
  • Session 2: June 24 (Monday) - June 27 (Thursday) mornings 9:00-11:30 a.m. for Zoom and conferencing
  • Session 3: June 24 (Monday) - June 27 (Thursday) evenings 4:30-7:00 p.m. for Zoom and conferencing
  • Session 4: July 8 (Monday) - July 11 (Thursday) mornings 9:00-11:30 a.m. for Zoom and conferencing
  • Session 5: July 29 (Monday) - August 1 (Thursday) mornings 9:00-11:30 a.m. for Zoom and conferencing

Can't make one of our sessions? We'd still love to talk about options for working with you. Contact us for further information. We have done one-on-one essay tutoring every year; the schedule will be worked out to be mutually convenient to you and the JSML tutor. The price for one-on-one tutoring is $1000, to cover as many meetings as necessary for you to get to a complete Common App essay that satisfies you.

How large are the classes?

The student-teacher ratio is no greater than 4:1. At least two teachers (and maybe all of us) will be present in any session, to make sure that each student receives feedback from multiple readers.

Does the course have one-on-one or group instruction?

Both! We open with group instruction for introduction, context, and idea-generation exercises, but even on Day 1 we meet one-on-one with each student. Day 2: some group instruction plus more one-on-one meetings. After that, it is all one-on-one until the essay is done.

How much does the camp course cost?

The camp costs $600 for the session, including all instruction, conferencing, and editing. Inflation begone: our price for 2024 is the same as it was for 2023! (One-on-one tutoring does cost more, of course: the price for that, as noted above, is $1000.)

Where does JumpStart Main Line meet?

Online, in the video-conferencing app Zoom. You don't have to download any software, but we'll reach out to you to check technical specifications. We'll email you an invitation link shortly before your session begins.

During one-to-one Zoom conferences we often also "meet" in shared documents -- whatever makes the most sense for that student at that point in that essay!

Who can take JumpStart Main Line's essay camp?

All rising seniors are welcome! We have taught students from Radnor HS, Haverford HS, Great Valley HS, Lower Merion HS, Harriton HS, Conestoga HS, Methacton HS, St. Joes’s Prep, the Baldwin School, Agnes Irwin School, Merion Mercy Academy, Malvern Prep, the Haverford School, the Shipley School, West Chester-Henderson, West Chester-Rustin HS, Downingtown West, Downingtown STEM, and several others. We have even had students Zooming in from Mexico, Germany, California, New Jersey, and Washington State!

Bottom line: if you can get to us on Zoom, we will work with you!

What schools have our clients been accepted to?

(Graphic: thanks to wordclouds.com)


Each session costs $600 per student, with a $300 non-refundable deposit towards the tuition.
One-on-one tutoring costs $1000 per student, with a $300 non-refundable deposit toward the tuition.


Ready to sign up for JumpStart? We're excited to hear from you! Please return the registration form to secure a seat in the camp.
We also have a Facebook page, "JumpStart Main Line," that you can check for updates. Please "like" us there!

2024 Registration Form

Online Payment

PayPal is available for you to submit the full camp fee of $600 or the full one-on-one fee of $1000 only (not installments).

Which session date and time?

If you pay by PayPal, we'll confirm your payment by email; please be sure to send along the registration form as soon as possible. Thanks!

Note: $300 is non-refundable.