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High School Counselors - Preparing Students for College

             The counseling profession is the youngest of the helping field. There are many different types of counselors available today and one is that of the school counselor. In many cases, the role of the school counselor is not always clearly defined therefore, some students are not aware of their presence or their purpose. Some believe the main purpose of the school counselor is to assist with Individualized Education Plans and 504 plans, however school counselors are equipped to do much more than that. School counselors have the skill set to assist with personal problems, academic concerns, testing, social development and career planning and college preparation to name a few. The purpose of this paper is to take a look at the role of the school counselor in relation to college preparation. How involved are counselors in this critical stage of development in the high school years and what exactly do they do to help students move to the next level.
             Background on the Need of School Counselors and College Preparation.
             Preparing students for college goes beyond completing applications, the preparation begins when students enter ninth grade. What role does the counselor play in the academic achievements of students that place them in a position to attend college? As the goals for many students in high school begin to shift to life after high school, many are not prepared as to what needs to be done to make sure that important goal is met. The services of the school counselor are crucial at this point in the high school career. School counselors however, face many challenges themselves. With the student/counselor ratio being at extreme odds (Simmons, 2011), it is very important that counselors have clear and precise plans to address the needs of their student population. While the education students receive is an invaluable piece of the puzzle, studies show that students fare better when they have the assistance of the school counselor (Simmons).

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