High School Counselor Week

Weekly stories, facts, trends, and other information from around the country


April 20, 2023

Big Picture

Higher Ed Braces for Historic SCOTUS ‘Affirmative Action’ Decision
Diverse Issues in Higher Education – April 18, 2023
Higher education is expecting a ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court in the Students for Fair Admissions (SFFA) v. Harvard College and SFFA v. University of North Carolina (UNC) Chapel Hill cases argued Oct. 31, 2022. The cases, led by anti-affirmative action activist and SFFA President Edward Blum, allege these institutions discriminated against Asian American applicants by unfairly prioritizing underrepresented minority applicants in violation of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. The ruling will decide whether private and public postsecondary institutions in the U.S. will be able to use race as a consideration in their admissions processes.

What Does Gen Z Want From Education?
EdSurge – April 18, 2023
Students are looking for something different from teachers and professors as they prepare to enter political and civic life, and that means educators need to change the way they support students when it comes to political engagement. That’s the argument made by Timothy Law Snyder, president of Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, who has been writing and speaking about the issue in recent months. EdSurge sat down with Snyder to hear more about his views on this generation of students, and what he thinks educators should do differently to teach and reach them.

Columns and Blogs

College Admissions, Juniors, and COVID”
Post – April 19, 2023
Counselors’ Corner with Patrick O’Connor, Ph.D.

The Waitlist STILL Sucks!
Post – April 19, 2023
College Advice & Timely Tips with Lee Bierer


Despite ‘Crisis,’ States and Districts Slow to Spend $1B in Mental Health Funds
The 74 – April 15, 2023
Like many state leaders this year, Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers used his January State of the State address to call for expanding student mental health services. ‘We cannot overstate the profound impact that the past few years have had on our kids,’ he said. But his state is among 40 that haven’t begun to distribute their share of nearly $1 billion in federal funding for school safety and mental health services approved last year as part of a bipartisan gun safety law. President Joe Biden signed the legislation in the aftermath of the Uvalde, Texas, school shooting that left 19 students and two adults dead. Education Secretary Miguel Cardona pressed state chiefs last month on why most of them hadn’t even launched competitions for districts to apply for funds, calling it ‘unacceptable’ during a ‘mental health crisis.’ Parents who saw the pandemic’s impact on their children’s well-being agree.

Confessions of a college counselor: Pushy parents, teen misery and the futility of the Stanford dream
Mercury News (CA) – April 18, 2023
In Irena Smith’s The Golden Ticket— a memoir about working on the front lines of America’s college admissions mania—the Palo Alto-based independent college counselor recalls how she made a ninth-grader cry. Smith told the boy and his mother that he shouldn’t count on getting into Stanford, despite his good grades and vow to do whatever he could to be accepted. As she writes, she worked in Stanford’s admissions office for four years and knew that the staff read most applications with ‘an eye to turning students down.’ She wants readers of her book to know there are more than 2,500 U.S. colleges that could dispense the ‘golden ticket’ to a happy, successful life — and most wouldn’t expect applicants to overload themselves with AP classes, extracurricular activities and unrealistic hopes. Though she continues to work with some of most ‘tightly wound’ teens in America, tries to dissuade them from the U.S. News and World Report-style hype that surrounds the ‘HYPS’ schools (Harvard, Yale, Princeton and Stanford).

Admissions Process & Strategy

College Decision Day is coming up: Here’s what to know before choosing a school
CNBC – April 18, 2023
Students have just a few weeks to figure out which college they will attend ahead of National College Decision Day on May 1, which is the deadline many schools set. But with a record-breaking increase in applications pushing acceptance rates to all-time lows, some college-bound seniors may have a tough decision to make, or pivot to back-up schools.

How High School Students Can Maximize Virtual College Visits
Forbes – April 17, 2023
While virtual college tours have existed in some capacity for decades, the Covid-19 pandemic sparked a decisive increase in virtual tours, a demand that has continued to surge. Nearly every college offers some form of a virtual campus tour and other tools for digital engagement on their admissions website. And sites such as CampusReel offer prospective students a window into life on campus through the eyes of current students. Whether you are a sophomore beginning to explore colleges, a junior visiting colleges and building your college list, or a senior anticipating your move in the fall, here’s how you can make the most of virtual college visits:


What families need to know about the cost of college and student loans
CBS News – April 18, 2023
CBS News business analyst Jill Schlesinger joins us to discuss the cost of paying for college. She shares what students and families need to know about financial aid packages, how high-interest rates could impact student loans, and some resources for students and families.



Preparing for College & Career Success: What Every Teen and Parent Should Know
Boys & Girls Clubs of America – April 18, 2023
‘What are you going to do after you graduate from high school?’ For many teens and their parents, answering this question can feel overwhelming. Thankfully deciding on life after high school graduation is a process, not an event. With early planning, determining what comes next—and experiencing the journey toward it—can and should be fun and rewarding. A simple timeline of how to make the most of your journey looks like this:

Financial Aid/Scholarships

How New FAFSA Will Change What Students Pay
Inside Higher Ed – April 18, 2023
The upcoming overhaul to the Free Application for Federal Student Aid and the underlying formula that determines how aid is dispersed will mean thousands more students will be eligible for the Pell Grant and higher-value Pell Grants than under the current formula, a new Brookings report finds. However, students with siblings in college likely will lose billions in institutional aid, according to the report, which analyzed how FAFSA simplification will affect students’ eligibility for financial aid.

The cost of college room and board is rising even faster than tuition. It’s driving students into even more debt.
Business Insider – April 19, 2023
Many public colleges have been ‘starved of state support,’ forcing them to increase auxiliary costs. Housing insecurity is among the most common factors that leads students to drop out altogether.

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Career & Technical Education

Jobs Of The Future Will Look Radically Different: Workforce Prep Needs To As Well
Forbes – April 19, 2023
Chances are your career looks nothing like the work of your parents. It may not look much like itself from even a few years ago. As we look around the corner to the occupations of tomorrow, the first thing we need to embrace is the notion that change is eternal. The world’s leading education systems understand that reality and are organizing their schools, institutions, and policies to be more dynamic and future oriented…

Apprenticeships on the Rise
Education Next – April 14, 2023
In the US, apprenticeships have traditionally centered on construction trades, and are run through unions rather than by companies. However, apprenticeships that enable young people to learn job skills while working and drawing a salary are nothing new in Europe, where they are a respected and common path to careers in many fields. They sometimes take the place of college in preparing students for well-paying jobs; they may serve as a steppingstone to advanced university training; or they can launch workers on a path to running large companies. Apprenticeship programs have now sprouted across the US in fields such as manufacturing, insurance, and banking as well as in technical fields such as cybersecurity, software engineering, and digital marketing.

Teen Health

Why Are Teen Girls in Crisis? It’s Not Just Social Media
U.S. News & World Report – April 17, 2023
Study after study says American youth are in crisis, facing unprecedented mental health challenges that are burdening teen girls in particular. Among the most glaring data: A recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report showed almost 60% of U.S. girls reported persistent sadness and hopelessness. Rates are up in boys, too, but about half as many are affected.

Meta opens up its Horizon Worlds VR app to teens for the first time, prompting outcries from US lawmakers
CNN – April 19, 2023
Meta is forging ahead with plans to let teenagers onto its virtual reality app, Horizon Worlds, despite objections that the technology could have possible unintended consequences for mental health. Those calls were echoed earlier this month by dozens of civil society groups who wrote in an open letter that Meta’s VR offerings could expose users to new privacy risks through the collection of biometric and other data; new forms of unfair and deceptive marketing; and abuse or bullying.

ADHD medication abuse in schools is a ‘wake-up call’
cnn – April 18, 2023
At some middle and high schools in the United States, 1 in 4 teens report they’ve abused prescription stimulants for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder during the year prior, a new study found. ‘This is the first national study to look at the nonmedical use of prescription stimulants by students in middle and high school, and we found a tremendous, wide range of misuse,’ said lead author Sean Esteban McCabe, director of the Center for the Study of Drugs, Alcohol, Smoking and Health at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.