10 New Year's Resolutions for College Counselors

Senior Assistant Editor, Wintergreen Orchard House

Dec   2012



New YearsWrite it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. — Ralph Waldo Emerson

As we ring in the New Year next week, many of us will take some time to reflect on our lives and note the places where there is room for improvement, the changes we’d like to make, and the things that we need to focus on more intently. This may mean resolving to spend more time with family, save up for a big vacation, or, that perennially popular resolution, hit the gym more often to lose the holiday pounds.

While the beginning of 2013 merely marks the middle of the school year, it is nevertheless a good time to think about the things you want to concentrate on and set some goals for your professional life. To help you get started, here are a few resolutions that college counselors might consider:

  1. Stick to a schedule and hone your time-management skills. Procrastination and getting behind cause undue stress and anxiety. Avoid them like the plague.
  2. Challenge your students. Push your students to strive for more than they believe they’re capable of. They’ll be pleasantly surprised with the results.
  3. Network with other counselors. Share your experiences and learn from the challenges others in the profession have faced. (Have you seen the CollegeXpress LinkedIn group for counselors?)
  4. Get feedback on your work performance. Ask a trusted colleague to honestly evaluate your work to help determine your strengths and areas that could be improved upon.
  5. Volunteer your services. Nothing feels as good as giving back. Consider lending your knowledge of the college admission process to underprivileged students in your community. And encourage your students to find ways to donate their time and skills as well.
  6. Continue your education. High school education and college admission are ever-evolving. Look for courses, conferences, training sessions, and webinars that will help you stay on top of them. 
  7. Join a professional organization (if you haven’t already). You’ll be able to meet other counselors, stay apprised of industry trends, and gain access to a multitude of professional resources.
  8. Update your counseling library. Get a head start on the next academic year and make sure your favorite counseling resources are up-to-date. And don’t forget to request current catalogs from the schools your students most often attend as they become available.
  9. Find ways to maximize the time you’re able to devote to college planning. If you’re a high school counselor, you may only have a small amount of time to spend on college planning. Make the most of it by relying on comprehensive and easy-to-use resources like CollegeXpress.com.
  10. Make time for yourself. Work hard, play hard, and rest up. Your students will reap the benefits of a happy, healthy, and energetic counselor.

Happy New Year from CollegeXpress!

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About Stephanie Farah

Stephanie Farah

Stephanie is a Writer and Senior Editor at Wintergreen Orchard House, where she manages the collection of data from schools in the Northeast and Midwest regions. Stephanie holds a B.A. in English from the University of Texas at Austin and a master's in journalism from the University of North Texas. At various times she has been: an uncertain undergrad, a financial aid recipient, a transfer applicant, and a grad student with an assistantship and a full ride. Stephanie is an avid writer, traveler, cook, and dog owner. She looks forward to sharing her experiences with college-bound students and the counselors guiding them along the way!  

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