More than 8 million high school students play a school sport. But of that group, less than one percent will go on to play sports at the collegiate level. And even fewer of those will ultimately go pro.
What do you do when your identity as a student athlete has been stripped away?
Dr. Hillary Cauthen of the Association for Applied Sport Psychology recently spoke to Teen Vogue about this struggle, which impacts many incoming college freshmen.
May 1 is the deadline for students to accept an offer of admission at many institutions, celebrated as Decision Day or College Signing Day.
Reach Higher, which is celebrating its fifth anniversary, is encouraging schools and communities to host College Signing Day events to help build a college-going culture and to recognize students’ hard work.
NACAC host Crystal Newby talked with Reach Higher’s Eric Waldo about the Signing Day tradition and what it adds to the college admission process.
NACAC issued a statement Tuesday, urging members to redouble their commitment to integrity within the college admission process.
The statement followed news reports of efforts by wealthy individuals to get their children into selective colleges and universities as part of a long-running cheating scam. The Justice Department charged 50 people with participating in this scheme.
Recruitment of rural and low-income students is often a goal of universities. But some schools don’t offer the support system to allow these students to succeed once they arrive on campus.
That was the case for writer Alison Stine.
Stine recently authored an essay recounting her experience as a student from a rural background at a private college.
“I wasn’t the first person in my family to go to college — I was the second generation, after my parents — and on teachers’ and guidance counselors’ advice, I had applied to several schools, including state universities,” she wrote. “But the private colleges were the ones that seemed to really want someone like me. They courted me. They offered me money, and I couldn’t say no to that. I couldn’t afford to.”
It’s never too early to start getting excited about College Signing Day!
College Signing Day has grown into a movement where counselors and students in all 50 states, including DC, Puerto Rico, and the US Virgin Islands, celebrate students and build a college-going culture at their schools.
We’ll be counting down to May 1 with Eric Waldo, executive director of Reach Higher, at noon ET on March 13. We’re chatting about plans for celebrating College Signing Day and the 5th anniversary of Reach Higher.
Equity and justice are important in all aspects of life, but absolutely vital in college admission.
NACAC members Ethan Sawyer, The College Essay Guy, and Marie Bigham, the founder of the ACCEPT: Admissions Community Cultivating Equity and Peace Today Facebook group, recently recorded a podcast episode on the ways school counselors and college admission professionals can work toward these goals.
Nearly 150 high school counselors, college admission professionals, community-based organization leaders, and other advocates will arrive in Washington, DC this weekend for NACAC’s annual Advocacy Meeting.
During this two-day event, attendees will learn more about student-to-counselor ratios in their states, the status of state and federal financial aid, and the economic impact of international and DACA students. The event will also feature talks from a Virginia state legislator and from a staff member of the House Committee on Education and Labor.
On Monday, attendees will head to Capitol Hill to meet with their elected officials and Congressional staff to advocate for NACAC’s policy priorities, including:
School Counseling. The American School Counselor Association (ASCA) and NACAC recommend a student-to-counselor ratio of 250:1. In the 2015-16 academic year, the national average ratio was 470:1. Furthermore, public school counselors report spending only 21 percent of their time on postsecondary admission counseling. #NACACHillDay attendees will advocate for lower ratios, increased funding, and improved professional development for school counselors.
Rigorous Curriculum. More than 80 percent of admission professionals say that a student’s strength of curriculum is of “considerable” or “moderate” importance in admission decisions. However, low-income students are less likely to have access to such curricula, and white students are nearly twice as likely as black students to be enrolled in at least one AP class. During their Congressional meetings, Advocacy Meeting attendees will advocate for all students to have equitable access to rigorous coursework in high school.
Need-Based Financial Aid. For many students and families, affording college is becoming increasingly more difficult. State and federal disinvestment in higher education funding has placed the burden of paying for college more squarely on the shoulders of students. #NACACHillDay attendees will encourage their elected officials to increase funding for federal need-based financial aid and to support efforts to simplify the FAFSA.
Student Protections. Some unscrupulous institutions of higher education – frequently, though not exclusively, those in the for-profit sector – employ predatory recruitment practices that target students who are often most vulnerable to such deceit. Students enrolled at for-profit institutions account for just over 10 percent of all postsecondary enrollments, but over 40 percent of student loan defaults. Despite these metrics, for-profit institutions still benefit from receiving tax-payer funded financial aid. Advocacy Meeting attendees will urge their Members of Congress during their Hill meetings on Monday to protect students and taxpayers by supporting efforts to reign in these unscrupulous institutions.
Undocumented Students. Legal challenges to the September 2017 announced rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program continue to leave DACA-eligible and other undocumented individuals in limbo. Furthermore, undocumented students are ineligible to receive federal student aid – this lack of financial support often puts higher education out of reach for these students. #NACACHillDay attendees will encourage their elected officials to support legislation that would help make higher education accessible and affordable for these students.
The advocates in attendance will touch on these topics and other important issues, including international student mobility, school safety, and more. Be sure to follow @NACACWonk and #NACACHillDay for updates, and tune in to Facebook Live at 9:45 am ET for a live broadcast of the “Counselors and Financial Aid in Your State” panel, with NACAC research associate Pooja Patel and Stephanie Giesecke, the director of budget and appropriations at the National Association of Independent Colleges and Universities.
Julie Kirk is NACAC’s government relations manager. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Daily updates on NACAC and the world of college admission counseling. For more information about NACAC, visit nacacnet.org.