Close to Missing Something Great

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Editor’s note: This column was first shared on the NACAC Exchange.

It’s just BUSY this time of the year, and while what I WANT to do is close the door and write, write, write, there are a myriad of other things that have to do done. There is nothing that says fall like the word busy.

So when a student popped in my office and asked if she could work on her application, I told her sure and kept working on what I needed to do. She would ask the occasional question, but mostly we were both working on her separate to-do lists.

Then there was silence. As a father of five, I FEAR silence. I looked up, and she was crying.

I asked what was wrong. She said in the smallest voice you can imagine, “My parents never went to college. I just finished my first application to college. No one in my family has ever gone to college.”

And I almost missed it.

I jumped up, did a happy dance, high-fived her, and cried and celebrated with her.

And so my thought to you today is: Don’t be me. Don’t miss the important things. Remind yourself that this is all new to them, even though you have done it for decades.

It was such a beautiful glorious moment.

And I almost missed it.

NACAC member Steve Peifer serves as director of college counseling at The King’s Academy (FL). He is a recipient of the CNN Heroes Award for Championing Children (2007) and the NACAC Excellence in Education Award (2010). Peifer is the author of “A Dream So Big.”

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