High School Counselor Week

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


April 25, 2019

Big Picture

College Admissions Scandal Reveals Difficult Path To Acceptance
NPR.org – Apr 22, 2019
Getting into college is already difficult and unnerving for many students. For low-income students, the recent college admissions scandal is prompting a crisis of faith about how fair the practice is.

College Admissions Side Doors
Inside Higher Ed-Apr 22, 2019
There is ample evidence that collectively the college admissions process is at an … Tuition discounting includes using campus-based financial aid, usually

College admissions are still easier for the wealthy and well-connected – and it’s perfectly legal
The Boston Globe – Apr 20, 2019
George Washington University president Stephen Trachtenberg was alone in his office one spring day in 2006 when he received an unexpected phone call

42% of Americans Say College Wasn’t Worth the Debt It Created
Nasdaq- Apr 23, 2019Though attending college isn’t always a prerequisite to getting a job, many high school grads feel compelled to pursue a degree for fear that they’ll be largely

Columns and Blogs

Unlocking the Mysteries of May 1
Post – Apr 24, 2019
Counselors’ Corner with Patrick O’Connor Ph.D

Making that tough final decision
Tribune News Service – Apr 22, 2019
College Admissions Strategies with Lee Bierer 

Elite Colleges, Entitled Teens and Guilted Parents
Post – Apr 9, 2019
The College Solution Blog with Lynn O’Shaughnessy

UVa offers an alternative route to Charlottesville
Post – Apr 8, 2019
The Explorations Blog with Nancy Griesemer


What do Philadelphia’s students want? More college counseling
The Hechinger Report-Apr 22, 2019
PHILADELPHIA — Nayeli Perez knew she wanted to go to college — but she didn’t know where to start. She didn’t know what sort of colleges might be likely

When counselors are in short supply, students step in to help
Christian Science Monitor – Apr 23, 2019
Schools in the United States face a dearth of counselors, who sometimes are assigned more than 700 students. Peers are being trained to fill some of the gaps. Can young people, no matter how well meaning, make a dent?

How a Houston Experiment in College Counseling Is Succeeding in Sending Low-Income, First-Generation Students to the Country’s Top Universities
The 74-Apr 22, 2019
This is an excerpt from the new Richard Whitmire book The B.A. Breakthrough: How Ending Diploma Disparities Can Change the Face of America.


‘Stop trying to make excuses’: College admissions scandal story hits a nerve
The Mercury News – Apr 22, 2019
For those parents and kids and university executives who never got the memo from Sophocles (“I would prefer even to fail with honor than to win by cheating,” he once famously said)

Telling parents to ‘just relax’ on college admissions perpetuates a broken system
Los Angeles Times – Apr 12, 2019
When the news of the college admissions scandal broke, I thought of one of my psychotherapy patients. She repeatedly brings up in our sessions that her father, a known writer, wrote her college essay

I Might Be A Helicopter Parent In College Admission If…
Forbes – Apr 19, 2019
The college admission scandal marked a new low in the annals of unethical parental behavior. The lying and scheming of the wealthy and well-connected to secure a college acceptance for their child both sickened …

Should you use your IRA to pay for college?
USA TODAY – Apr 21, 2019
IRAs, or individual retirement accounts, are a valuable long-term savings tool, particularly for workers who don’t have access to a 401(k) through their jobs.


What we have learned, 20 years after Columbine
PBS NewsHour – Apr 19, 2019
How are those closest to the Columbine school shooting observing its 20th anniversary? Coni Sanders’ father, David, was a teacher and coach at Columbine and the only adult killed — but not before he warned hundreds of students to safety


Before Deciding on a College, Look Closely at the Financial Aid Letter
The New York Times – Apr 19, 2019
High school students opening their college financial aid offers may be excited to see that they have received an “award.” After all, it sounds like a prize

Ethical College Admissions: Dealing With Disappointment
Insider Higher Ed – Apr 22, 2019
Several weeks ago I received an email from a college counseling friend asking for advice. The counselor had just had the kind of “what went wrong?” meeting that is standard at this time of year 

Admissions Process & Strategy

What really goes into the admissions process at elite colleges?
The Hartford Courant – Apr 24, 2019
The latest disgrace involving bribery to obtain admission to elite colleges is atrocious, inexcusable and fraudulent, but the complicated process of admissions might not be as pure as some would like

Naviance Wields Much ‘Power and Influence’ in College Admissions, Harvard Researcher Finds
EdSurge – Apr 18, 2019

For decades, the college-admissions process has been shrouded in mystery. But these days, big data, and a popular college planning tool, are taking much of the guesswork out of applying to college. 

Career & Technical Education

Letter to the editor: More high school students, parents should consider vocational education
Canton Repository-Apr 18, 2019
There is a growing need for trade school and vocational programs, such as learning how to work with wood and metal, or doing other hands-on projects.

Career and tech education is seeing renewed excitement. How do Centre County students benefit?
Centre Daily Times-Apr 23, 2019
While the importance of career and technical education has captured the attention of state lawmakers, local leaders in business, industry and education say a lack of interest in CTE programs is causing a workforce

Financial Aid/Scholarships

What Should Colleges Tell Admitted Applicants About Aid?
Inside Higher Ed – Apr 22, 2019
Education Department joins groups seeking more clarity in the way colleges tell would-be students about financial assistance.

Making sense of college financial aid letters
Fox Business-Apr 21, 2019
Congratulations – you are considering college! But first, paying for it: Students who applied for financial aid through the Free Application for Federal Student Aid,

Ed Dept gives guidance on transparent financial aid offers
Education Dive-Apr 18, 2019
Among the guidance is to avoid calling student loans and work-study an “award,” and instead use terms such as “financial aid offer” or “college financing.

Decoding financial award letters
Chicago Tribune-Apr 18, 2019
Peeler created a service that provides high school and college students with the help they need to navigate the financial aid, scholarship, and student loan

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Inside The Admissions Office

Georgia Tech Admission Blog
Apr 17, 2019

Decision Time – Later, I was thinking about that line a little bit more. “I’ve waited my whole life to feel miserable.” It got me thinking about conversations I’ve had with a lot of high school seniors over the last month

Making your college decision (…feat. the Fab Five)
Tuft University  Admission Blog
Apr 5, 2019

Yayayay! If you’re reading this blog today, I suspect you’ve recently been admitted to college, so congratulations! Only 7 percent of the world’s population has a college degree,

Teen Health

What’s Driving the Rise in Teen Depression?
U.S. News & World Report-Apr 22, 2019
Adolescent depression is on the rise. The National Institute of Mental Health reports that about 3.2 million 12- to 17-year-olds have had at least one major

Why Are So Many Teen Athletes Struggling With Depression?
The Atlantic – Apr 17, 2019
When Isabella started playing lacrosse in the first grade, she would wake up before sunrise and count the minutes until she could hop the chain-link fence that separated her house from the field where her team… 


Everything you Need to Know About SAT and ACT Essays
TeenLife Blog – Apr 19, 2019 
You’ve studied the math, grappled with grammar, and worked on your reading comprehension. But then there’s the essay, looming over all your test prep, so uncertain and subjective. 

3 Time Management Strategies for AP Free Response
US News & World Report – Apr 22, 2019
THE FREE RESPONSE section on an AP exam typically accounts for roughly 50% of a student’s total AP score, though the precise weight varies for different subjects.


College Admission Tests and Disability
New York Times – Letter – Apr 23, 2019
I am the parent of two young adult children with learning disabilities. Both were allowed double time on the SAT and the ACT and thus took these exams in the special one-on-one proctoring

Students share their experiences living with disabilities at Notre Dame
Observer Online – Apr 24, 2019
Students called for a greater understanding of students with disabilities in a panel … The many stresses of college life pose a risk to student who struggle with

College Visits

How To Make The Most Out Of College Fairs
Forbes – Apr 23, 2019
Attending college fairs is a fantastic way to do college research and gather more information about the university and its application process.

Making the most out of your college visit
Kenosha News – Apr 18, 2019
The college admission process is an exciting time. Deciding where you will spend the next years of your educational journey can also be quite stressful.

Gap Year

Questions to ask before taking a gap year
Northwest Georgia News – Apr 20, 2019
High school seniors are on the cusp of significant change as they begin their final year of secondary school. As students try to decide what to do after high school, many will be preoccupied with applying to college

Our 2019 Guide to Gap Year Programs
TeenLife Blog – Apr 16, 2019
After spending 12 years working toward high school graduation, perhaps the thought of heading back into the classroom for another four years has you feeling a bit restless


College Essay Examples: How to Write Your Story
US News & World Report – Apr 24, 2019
No college application is complete without the personal essay, which can be daunting for many students to write. But a few simple tips, some introspection and insight into what admissions officers are looking for can help ease the pressure