Leo Costa

PHA College Counselor and PHA Class of 2009 Alum
Leo CostaWhat year and grade did you start attending PHA?
I started at PHA in kindergarten in 1996.
What year did you graduate from PHA?
I graduated from PHA in 2009 as part of the first class of "Lifers".
What was your experience like as a student at PHA?
I loved being at PHA as a student. It provided me with the close-knit community and friendships that I didn't know I needed at the time. I was able to build life-long friendships and learn from teachers that truly cared.
What is your favorite PHA memory?
At the end of my senior year, myself and the rest of the first class of "Lifers" went to the Early Childhood Campus to read to a few of the classes. I didn't realize it at the time, but 10 years later I would be helping a few of those same students with their college applications after I returned to PHA as a college counselor. It was a surreal experience that brought my entire journey full circle.
What have you been up to since graduating from PHA?
After I graduated from PHA, I attended Macalester College in Saint Paul, Minnesota. I was really looking for something different and new, which is what I got. Upon graduating from Macalester, I returned to PHA as a building substitute and then a high school math teacher. I knew I wanted to be a counselor, so I left PHA and went back for my Masters in Counseling at Boston University. After working at a non-profit for a year after that, I returned to PHA as a college counselor and have been here ever since.
What is it like to work for the same school you graduated from?
By the time I returned to PHA, it had changed so much (in a good way) that it didn't feel like the PHA that I graduated from. What was most exciting was being able to work with some of the teachers that I had as a student, seeing how they approached their work and what made them so effective. I enjoy being here because of the same reasons that I loved being here as a student. The close-knit community is second to none.