Counseling Institute: All Counselors Are College Counselors

Spring 2008 | | June 4, 2008 at 11:16 am


Over 100 participants pre-registered for the three one day Counseling Institute sessions provided by California GEAR UP.  In the first session at the Embassy Suites in Downey, 36 participants learned about the paths to college from middle school.  With the guidance of counseling facilitators Linda Loya and Qiana Patterson, middle school counselors, teachers and project coordinators discussed their schools’ college culture and suggested displays and activities to enhance the school environment.  The interactive sessions focus on topics including financial aid, scholarships, comparison of district graduation requirements versus A-G college requirements and GEAR UP and other available resources.  Training materials included a survey of student learning styles.

Over 100 participants pre-registered for the three one day Counseling Institute sessions provided by California GEAR UP.  In the first session at the Embassy Suites in Downey, 36 participants learned about the paths to college from middle school.  With the guidance of counseling facilitators Linda Loya and Qiana Patterson, middle school counselors, teachers and project coordinators discussed their schools’ college culture and suggested displays and activities to enhance the school environment.  The interactive sessions focus on topics including financial aid, scholarships, comparison of district graduation requirements versus A-G college requirements and GEAR UP and other available resources.  Training materials included a survey of student learning styles.

Participants reported on creative school site activities to promote college-going:  

  • College posters made by students displayed in the library.
  • Creating space as a “College Corner” with access to college catalogs, career and financial aid information, and college-type games.
  • In a 7th grade after school program, students built 3-D models of a college.
  • An elective class about college is offered at the middle school.
  • Mentoring and tutoring partnerships are being expanded to add college interns on campus on a daily basis.
  • Students selected for the Educational Trust Awards are honored at a special event.
  • “College: Making It Happen” and “Kids On Campus” videos are shown in the detention room.

Participants commented in their evaluations about the aspects of the Institute that stimulated new thinking.

Los Nietos Middle School:  “Including all students in the college culture ideas, not just AVID, GEAR UP or honor students, and utilizing the websites.”
    
White Middle School:  “All aspects stimulated new thinking for me.  I’m a new counselor and the information presented was very helpful.”

Belvedere Middle School:  “The different ideas that each group presented gave me new ideas for programming at my school!”

Sepulveda Middle School:  “Always tell kids your story because you don’t know when you are planting a seed.  The GEAR UP Pocket Guide is awesome.  With all of the information and resources, I feel better prepared to share with students and parents.
        
Roosevelt Middle School:  “How to bring a collegiate atmosphere to my office.”

Hollenbeck Middle School:  “The presenters were great and very knowledgeable.  They had good insight and answered all my unanswered questions.”

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