Counseling Pitfalls Drag College Completion Goals

Click on the image for the full article
Click on the image for the full article

This article is brutally honest, but without this, where will improvement come from?  I want to go on record: this is not the counselors’ or casemanagers’ fault.  It’s all about ratios.  Just like with class size, when one professional is responsible for too many students, it is impossible to provide the quality support each individual needs and deserves.

Counselors’ case loads also matter. Nationwide, the average counselor sees nearly twice as many students as the 1:250 ratio recommended by the American Counseling Association. On average, each counselor is responsible for 471 students.

I have a caseload of about twenty and an additional twenty in my advisory each year.  It’s a challenge to keep up with them in addition to my teaching duties. I cannot imagine being responsible for 250+ students, all of which have individualized needs including: emotional, physical, and mental trauma, family trauma, relationship advice, college-guidance, etc.

All of this makes it difficult to accomplish the personalized approach that is so desperately needed.  But clearly, the personalized approach is successful, especially with the “underserved” populations.

“While current efforts … may produce some gains in college-going rates, emerging research points to specific counselor attitudes and priorities, as well as video, coaching and texting approaches demonstrated to have meaningful impacts, particularly among low-income students and others underrepresented in higher education,” the report says.

So why not invest in some of the low-cost (although perhaps time-consuming, especially upfront) strategies?  Seems worth it to me!

Where have all the socks gone?

♪♫ Where have all the socks gone? Long time passing… ♫♪

I don’t get it. I live in the tiniest apartment ever. Only one drawer – ONE DRAWER – contains socks. And yet, I am constantly finding only one freakin’ sock. One Sock! But I have two feet! Is there some elf or goblin or fantastical creature that sneaks around and steals one sock from every pair while my back is turned?!

Matching these buggers is for the birds.

How to read more…

Another great recommendation, though I admit, I will not be throwing my phone in the ocean!

2015 Reading Challenge

Challenge Accepted! I’ve printed this and, as luck would have it, I’ve already started it:

“Gone with the Wind” fits under

1.) book with 500+ pages
2.) a classic romance
3.) book that became a movie
4.) book by female author
5.) book at the bottom of my to-read list
6.) book set somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit
7.) a book I started (back in high school) but never finished (because I hated Scarlett too much).

Who will join me?? 

2015 Reading Challenge1

Give Yourself an Attitude Makeover

Click on the image above for the full article.
Click on the image above for the full article.

This article is fabulous!  Nine easy steps can make the world of difference when you get bogged down, especially this time of year despite the emphasis on joy and cheer.  Take the time to adjust your own perspective!

  1. Breathe!
  2. Hug someone (with their permission 😉 )
  3. Change the way you walk
  4. Play with a pet
  5. Try loving kindness meditation
  6. Spend some time worrying (I was skeptical on this one, too)
  7. Nap (my fave, ha!)
  8. Write down what you’re grateful for
  9. Hang out – unplugged! – with a friend (this has made the most difference for me, personally)

Isn’t it ironic?!

Me: So, where did you go instead of 4th hour last week?

Student: I got lost.

Me: You mean you went home?

Student: Of course not, Miss–(answers his phone)

Me: (annoyed expression, furious hand-gestures to put phone away)

Student: (waves at me and goes into the storage closet he calls “My Office”)

Me: (follows him into his “Office”)

Student: … yes, area code ###. Thank you, goodbye.

Me: (hands thrown up in the universal “What are you doing?!” way)

Student: It was Iowa. Ashley skipped again.

Me: What?!

Student: (slightly judging tone) I keep getting these calls from some school in Iowa. A girl named Ashley skips all the time. ALL the TIME, Miss.

Me: She sounds like you, dude.

Student: (laughing, shaking his head) I know, I know… I skip a lot, but she skips ALL THE TIME!

Me: (Laughing so hard, it takes me a minute to give my witty retort.)

Me: So… now you know how your mom would feel if she got the calls from school, instead of you being home to delete them before she gets home, eh?

Student (He wouldn’t look at me, but grinned as he rolled his eyes at the floor)