Category Archives: College Admission

Tell Us: Is Your Institution Supporting Students Affected by Natural Disasters?

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Is your college or university offering flexibility to students impacted by recent natural disasters? Let us know!

NACAC is creating a digital resource to assist counselors working with US students affected by hurricanes and wildfires, as well as international students impacted by earthquakes and floods. Colleges and universities are asked to add their information to the database by completing a short survey.

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Help Your Students Prepare for National College Fairs

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Editor’s note: A version of this post originally appeared on Admitted in April 2015. It’s being republished as part of NACAC’s Best of the Blog series.

All hail the humble highlighter.

Neon markers are a vital part of Dana Lambert’s efforts to help students make the most of their National College Fair experience.

“I make them come in with a plan,” said Lambert, a counselor at West Milford Township High School in New Jersey. “Once the list of fair exhibitors comes out, we have them sit down and highlight the schools and the tables that they want to stop at.”

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Engagement Key to Retaining Non-Traditional College Students

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Determining which returning adult students are at risk of dropping out of college is a complex process, according to results from a recent national survey.

Common data points — such as demographics, choice of major, and hours devoted to studying — can’t reliably predict whether a nontraditional student will struggle to complete their degree.

As it turns out, the most dependable factor for identifying at-risk non-traditional students is the extent to which they make effective connections to their college, a factor that can be difficult to measure. After all, the very students who are most in danger of dropping out often have limited contact with professors, peers, and college staff, according to a recent report from Barnes & Noble College Insights — a division of the bookseller that produces quantitative and qualitative research related to higher education.

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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.

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Report Examines Experiences of First-Gen Students

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Prospective first-generation college students cite high educational aspirations as 10th graders, but take longer to enroll in college and are less likely than their peers to earn a degree.

Those findings are included in a new research brief from the US Department of Education’s Institute of Educational Sciences. The report uses 10 years of data collected from a nationally representative sample of students who were high school sophomores in 2002.

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Study: Are Today’s Teens Afraid to Grow Up?

Dating and obtaining a driver’s license have long been American rites of passage, but a new study suggests that today’s teens seem less interested in meeting those milestones than prior generations.

A study published this week in the journal Child Development showed a sharp decline over the past decade in the percentage of adolescents who date or drive. The share of teens who have tried alcohol or held a paying job has also decreased.

And while some of the data may suggest that teens are making healthier choices, the overall trend of delaying adulthood may speak to the increased pressures today’s kids face, according to a Washington Post article examining the new findings.

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A Reminder: The Work We Do Changes Lives

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

All of you see it every year.

A senior who graduated in May stops in before they head off to college. The smile is bright, but the eyes betray them; they are scared.

It’s easy for me to reassure them because, as old as I am, I remember how transformational the first week of college was. I was the first person in my family to graduate from college, and I grew up in a town of 13,000 in Illinois. I really had no idea what to expect. I was pretty scared.

It started in my second class. My professor said something, and I laughed out loud. He asked me what was so funny, and I told him that I had never ever thought about what he had just mentioned. He gave me a sly grin and became a lifelong mentor.

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Navigating the Tide of Stress this Fall

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Each August, I get hit by a tsunami of anxiety and stress. Though it happens year after year, I’m still startled when I look up and see it above me, overshadowing the peaceful laziness of summer that came before.

Call it a professional hazard: Students and parents cannot help but look toward college with apprehension, and their apprehension arrives in force (in my office) in August. Whether stemming from the unbelievable cost of college, or the incredible odds against getting into a dream school, these fears are grounded in the realities of today’s college admission world.

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Campus Differences Matter in the College Search

Courtesy of Barbara T. Conner

Editor’s note: A version of this post originally appeared on Admitted in June 2016. It’s being republished as part of NACAC’s Best of the Blog series.

After visiting a few college campuses, most people begin to think that they are all alike — and in some ways they are right. Most colleges offer students a variety of factors that seem similar: rigorous academics, varied social activities, and meaningful ways to connect with the community.

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4 Ways College Counselors Can Increase Access for Underrepresented Students

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Diversity on campus strengthens our colleges and our country.

Yet a large number of qualified students from low-income and minority populations are still underrepresented in American higher education due to inadequate access to college advising resources.

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