“You’re not college material and you should pursue other avenues.”
I was devastated when my high school counselor said those dreadful words to me.Each morning the announcements at school congratulated another senior on his or her acceptance.There were no announcements for me. The bulletin board was filled with miniature caps and the colleges beside the names.My name was not listed.The counselor kept scheduling sessions with seniors, I was at the end of the list. One afternoon I found myself standing in front of the bulletin board and I had an “aha” moment, “If I don’t pursue my dream, who will?”
After a few weeks of wallowing my parents were ready to send me to a therapist.This was fine because everyone needs an objective person to talk with but I took matters into my own hands.I applied to 6 colleges-not all of them accepted me and that was frustrating, embarrassing and awkward, especially when friends, family and even strangers would ask, “So, Linda have you decided?Where will you be in the fall?What’ s your major?”I would listen incessantly to the accolades of someone’s son/daughter, nephew, brother, cousin and feel deeper despair and anxiety.What have I done wrong?What could I have done better?Should I have applied to just one more school?I just don’t know where I’m going yet-perhaps I will not go anywhere.
Education became my opportunity and my hope.It also allowed me to make mistakes, my mistakes that I now share with clients.
My experience occurred many years ago and I have since learned many lessons.
We end up where we are meant to be.
The pressure of college admissions is real and yes it is different for everyone.
Schedule a weekly appointment with your child to discuss just college.
Avoid posting acceptances online (it makes others and your kids anxious)
The experience you had is very different than your son/daughter’s.
Be open to colleges you have never heard of.
Yes, a tour guide can make or break whether you stay for the entire tour.
It’s okay to visit during the summer-sometimes you just have to.
Linda King, President of The King Advantage, utilizes her 20 years of experience as a guidance director and counselor to help adolescents deal with the stressors that go along with being a teenager. Her relatable and effective style and her intimate knowledge of school-related procedures will help you maintain positive family relations. Helping students with the college admissions process is her passion!
Linda earned her C.A.S from the University of Vermont, M.S. in School Counseling from Sage Graduate School, B. A. English LIterature, Russell Sage College.She is currently completing her Masters in Mental Health Counseling, as well as her internship at a drug/alcohol treatment facility. Linda is a member of the American Mental Health Counselors Association and the Capital District Counseling Association based in Albany, New York. Read Linda’s full resume on LinkedIn.
The King Advantage will put college and your life in focus.