Michelle is an Educational and Therapeutic Consultant with RNG International Educational Consultants LLC™. With a background as a school psychologist, she understands the intersection of academic and social-emotional life for students. She consults on traditional boarding school and therapeutic program placements for a wide range of student profiles.
Michelle served as a school psychologist in public and charter schools in New York City and Denver, Colorado. She is a member of the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) and maintains her NCSP (Nationally Certified School Psychologist) credential. She is a Professional member of IECA and individual member of NATSAP. She earned her Masters of Education in School Psychology at Teachers College Columbia University and a Bachelor’s in History from the College of William and Mary. She is a graduate of the The Madeira School, an all-girls boarding school.
Michelle is currently serving as the national therapeutic chair for IECA, periodically writes for IECA’s newsletter “Insights,” and presents regularly at professional conferences.
Michelle calls Colorado home and enjoys working local and US-based students, as well as young global nomads like herself. Having grown up for many years overseas, she experienced firsthand the challenges and rewards of being a Third Culture Kid. She now offers a professional lens through which to understand the impact of global mobility on children and youth.
I believe every child can learn and can thrive. I am passionate about education, mental health, and the role of educational consultants.
Find her on LinkedIn!
When Your Child Isn’t Making Friends in Boarding School There is a special heartache for the parent of the lonely child. More than academic, athletic, artistic or any other success, parents seem to first want children to feel loved and accepted… to make friends and be invited places, to have a tribe. So, what to…read more
11 Ways to Ace the Boarding School or College Zoom Interview originally written by Kristina Grappo and updated for 2020 Okay real talk. The Zoom (or other video chat feature) interview is great. You don’t have to leave your house, you don’t have to wear pants, the possibilities are really endless. Technology– ammiright?! Don’t get…read more
Top 3 Tips for Third Culture Kids…who have just moved This post is for teens. First off, you should know I tried my best to make a YouTube video — because that seems to be the thing these days– but I can’t edit it. So until that is ready, I am communicating with old-fashioned writing….read more
11 Ways to Ace the Boarding School or College Zoom Interview by: guest blogger Kristina Grappo Okay real talk. Zoom (or other video chat feature) interviews are great. You don’t have to leave your house, you don’t have to wear pants, the possibilities are really endless. Technology– ammiright?! Don’t get too excited yet though. There…read more
To Mrs. Grappo Thank you so much. It’s hard to understand how a person I have never met has saved my life, but that is certainly what you have done. If I had not gone to this school, my life would have been so much darker and dreadful. But you were able to open the…”
I know I have already thanked you before for everything you did to assist us, but I wanted to share this with you since I suppose it can never hurt to be told more than once that you make a difference in people’s lives.”
One more thing before I control the flood of words here. You are amazing. You’re so much more than I could ever have hoped for. I think you have a gift for this work and I’m so thankful we get to share in it.”
A young man, 18, was admitted into a very selective and competitive college. However, having just been diagnosed with ADD, he was overwhelmed with all the independence, lack of structure, freedom, and new responsibilities. By the end of first term, he was nearing failure. It was imperative to get him in touch with student counseling…”
A fifteen year old male student was extremely bright, but also had major struggles with ADD, depression, and behavior issues at school, resulting in numerous suspensions. The relationship at home was fraught with conflict and the family was at the breaking point. He was belligerent about the thought of going to boarding school, and opposed…”
A young man, 15, started looking for a boarding school for his junior and senior years. He had everything going for him – stellar resume, grades, sports, and personality. The conversation focused on just how much academic pressure he was willing to take on. He was adamant he wanted to push himself, and was given…”
A young woman of 17 moved to a remote location for what would have been her senior year of high school. She had never lived overseas before, and her school only offered the International Baccalaureate program. Therefore, she was put back a year to start the IB curriculum. She was miserable, and things finally reached…”
A family with a son who had significant development delays contacted me regarding life as an internationally mobile family and wondered about embarking on such a lifestyle. We spent hours of counseling up front while they were still in their home environments, and the family prepared to homeschool their son, knowing few schools overseas would…”
A family with two employed parents was suddenly separated by an evacuation, leaving them with some important decisions to make quickly regarding the children’s education. The older daughter remained in her boarding school and became the school’s star student; the younger one remained with mom and came back to the U.S. The father remained overseas…”
A sixteen year old girl came to me feeling very depressed and uninspired by school. Her mother was extremely concerned by her lack of engagement. This girl was extremely bright but did not do well in a traditional setting. Her mother said her creative side needed to be encouraged in order to get her engaged…”
I wanted to tell you I spent last weekend in Arizona having a reunion of friends from Beijing days 20 years ago…..and guess who was there…a dear friend…..I said, you don’t happen to know Becky Grappo and her words, exactly, “She saved my life!!!!” I thought you would like to know that….she is in fine…”
Speaking of professionals, please accept my sincere gratitude for your brilliant work. This all really started happening after you challenged our son to give you something concrete to work with. Your strategy was perfectly planned and executed. Good Show!”
I just wanted to thank you for getting me through the most painful and difficult thing I have ever had to do. I know that there is a lot of work to be done but I feel we are finally on the right track. I know that you put a lot of effort into helping…”
My husband and I cannot thank you enough for coming through for our son, when he needed someone like yourself to come for his rescue. Our son is a changed young man – full of confidence and joys of life. It is simply wonderful to see him doing so well and it is all thanks to you.”
My son is doing incredible!! I cannot believe the difference in him. He still has a way to go, but he even knows it and he is just so open and honest with us and himself. I am proud of him. Thank God for all of you that help us realize that we and our kids…”
I will take this opportunity to thank you for all your assistance and support over the last few months. This period could have been most stressful but was not due to your support, cool guidance and highly professional approach.”
I have seen a lot of maturity and sense of responsibility in him. No matter how much I miss him not having him home with the family, both his father and I realize that sending him to boarding school was the best things that we have done for him. The staff is wonderful at his…”
I don’t think I have adequately thanked you for the superb work you did for us this past year. We went from being nowhere, to getting our son into some excellent, superb schools. You should be so proud of what you do, because it’s clearly an art. No rules, but a lot of gut feelings….”
You have already helped him, by giving him hope that his unique voice can be heard and celebrated. Thank you so much for that gift!”
I wanted to thank you for your helpful emails and staying in contact with me even now that I’m in college. I wanted to at least give you a quick reply and let you know that I’m loving it here at my college and feel like it is the perfect place for me. More than anything,…”
I would like to thank you personally for everything you’ve done for our son, actually for both my children. My husband and I were have been suffering (not so silently) for the past month with our son and his essays, or their non-existence. Even though we felt he had good chances of getting in, one…”
I just want to make the point of thanking you formally for all the great work that you did with our son this last year! It was wonderful and so reassuring to know that you were there with him throughout the whole process of university applications. We all know it can be stressful for most and…”
I just wanted to let you know I could not do any of this without you, and I am so thankful for someone that cared enough to help me become successful.”
I gotta say I couldn’t have done it without you.”