Kate Browning
McGill-Toolen Class of 2001

Kate feels very fortunate to have been able to attend Catholic schools from kindergarten all the way to law school. She graduated from St. Pius in 1997 and was in the McGill-Toolen Class of 2001. She went on to graduate from Spring Hill College and Ave Maria School of Law in Naples, Florida. Kate currently works in Mobile for her father’s law firm, Richard E. Browning, P.C. They specialize in the areas of Worker’s Compensation, Social Security Disability, Longshore and Harbor Worker’s Compensation and Personal Injury.

Kate says, “I think what I loved most about McGill was the concept of helping students to grow and better themselves in mind, body and spirit. McGill-Toolen Catholic is a true community, and there is a niche for everyone.” Kate found her niche by participating in clubs such as the Student Ambassador's Club, Pro-Life Club and Key Club and playing on the girls' tennis team all four years. She enjoyed being challenged in AP and Honors classes. Kate says she loved the fact that she attended a high school that not only had exciting football games and entertaining plays, but a place where she had the opportunity to attend Mass in the school gym and begin each class with a prayer.

“While at McGill-Toolen Catholic, I was surrounded by students who became some of my closest friends and still are to this day.”, Kate said. As an alumnus, she thoroughly enjoys attending events such as football games and the Jacket Jubilation. She is really looking forward to her ten-year reunion this summer, as well! Kate said, “I cannot believe it has already been a decade since graduation, but I will be eternally grateful for the preparation I received at McGill- Toolen Catholic and look forward to being an active alumnus for many years to come.

Grade Level Services



Freshman Issues

Introduction to High School and the Counseling Department:
Students will learn the who, what, why, and when of the McGill-Toolen Catholic High School Department.

High School 101

Preparing for Semester Exams:
Students will be introduced to the McGill-Toolen exam process, learn why exams are so important, and review basic study skills to get prepared.

Pre-Registration for Sophomore Year:
Students will be introduced to registration procedures, the sophomore curriculum, and how it relates to their individual goals.

Considerations for the end of Freshman Year:
Students will take a realistic look at where they are and redefine their goals for the remainder of high school years.

Sophomore Issues

Factors for Consideration
Academic Achievement
Social Maturity
Personal Responsibility
Activities Involvement

Preparing for the PLAN Test:
Through English classes, information is assimilated on physical and mental test preparation, testing strategies, and testing format.

Preparing for Semester Exams:
Students will receive testing schedules and review preparation skills for semester exams.

Review of PLAN Test Results:
Assimilation of test results, interpretation of test results, and use of test results. Also included is an estimation range of ACT scores.

Pre-Registration for Junior Year:
Review of registration procedures, junior curriculum, and placement for specific classes.

Preparing for Upperclassmen Status:
Students will review check their credit status and continue to build a basis for career and college choices.

Junior Issues

Interested students register with their grade level counselor. The PSAT is offered for those Juniors who wish to:

  • Assess their verbal, mathematical, and writing skills
  • Prepare for the SAT
  • Qualify for National Merit Scholarship Cooperation Program

Beginning the College Search:
Group guidance sessions prepare the students for the annual College Fair. These classroom presentations also include discussions of other sources of information available (i.e. websites, reference books) to aid in the college selection process. The aspects of a campus visit, as well as questions for admission counselors are included in these presentations.

Preparing for the ACT/SAT:
Juniors are introduced to the procedure of applying for the ACT and the SAT tests in early spring. Practical suggestions for test preparation and test taking strategies are also covered.

Pre-registration for Senior Courses:
The process and paperwork for senior year registration is discussed in small group sessions. Particular attention is placed on selecting courses needed to complete graduation requirements.

Senior Issues

Completing the College Search:
Group and individual guidance sessions help students to review graduation requirements, cover McGill-Toolen’s college visitation policy, and encourage students to continue ACT and SAT testing. College representatives schedule visits in order for Seniors to learn more about particular schools in which they are interested. Scholarship

Completing College Applications and Preparing for Interviewing:
Advice is given to students’ on filling out college applications, writing essays, and meeting deadlines. Interviewing skills are also reviewed in order for students to feel more at ease during the process.

College Fair:
Seniors who have not decided on a particular school are encouraged to attend the annual College Fair.

Graduation Information:
Graduation Procedures begin being discussed third quarter.

Finalizing Future Plans:
Fourth quarter is spent wrapping up the college application process. Students are instructed on the appropriate ways to accept or decline various college invitations.

Counseling Team - website

Bro. Lee Barker, S.C. - Counselor
B.S. - Spring Hill College
Masters - Loyola, New Orleans, La.
Years in Catholic Education - 55
Email: barkerl@mcgill-toolen.org

Ken Bleicher - Junior Counselor
B.S. - University of South Alabama (Psychology)
Masters - University of South Alabama (Community Counseling)
Years in Catholic Education - 7
Email: bleichk@mcgill-toolen.org

Robin Brown - Sophomore Counselor
B.S. - University of South Alabama, Elementary Education
Masters - University of South Alabama, School Counseling
Years in Catholic Education - 21
Email: brownr@mcgill-toolen.org

Ellen Falzini - Senior Counselor
B.S.- University of South Alabama (Special Education)
Masters - University of South Alabama (Special Education/Learning Disabled)
Masters - University of South Alabama (School Counseling)
Years in Catholic Education - 33
Email: falzine@mcgill-toolen.org

Cathy Seward - Freshman Counselor
B.S. University of South Alabama
Director of Admissions
Director of Summer School
Moderator of Friends of Exceptional Children/ Ambassadors

Years in Catholic Education - 17
Email: sewardc@mcill-toolen.org