This thought came to me while I was watching Grey’s Anatomy, (I’m a season or two behind so don’t judge me). There’s a scene where Bailey and Margaret Pierce talk about how their guidance counselors or others tried to steer them away from the colleges they wanted, suggesting places they’d be “more comfortable” or that was better suited for them. It reminded me of two separate guidance counselors who did the same to me.
What They Said
One was my college counselor at my High School in Chicago, St. Ignatius. Another was a woman who was part of an extracurricular program I was part of to help students with service learning but also mentoring. I was told my 3.0 GPA and activity and leadership riddled resume wouldn’t be good enough for certain colleges. I needed to set more realistic standards. It scared me. So, I didn’t apply to my top choice. I did not push myself. I applied to my second choice and a few other colleges. I got in everywhere. I will never know where I could’ve gone. I picked the school that gave me an almost full scholarship and was the best. I started my college year at Grinnell College in Iowa.
Luckily I still went to a great college. But what if I would have fully listened to them and created a whole new list to apply to for college? I’m happy I had my mom pushing me but I still didn’t listen to her I didn’t apply to Yale like she wanted me to do or a few other universities. Don’t let that happen to your high schooler.
What You Can Do
People think that college counselors and guidance counselors have students’ best interests at heart. I’m sure many do. However, in my experience and the experience of my peers some do not. It is important that as parents we are the main source helping our children make the imporant decision of where to go for college and not let someone else steer our children wrong. Let the college counselors assist you both as you all make the choice of what is best for your child.