Happy School Counseling Week!
We hope you all have taken some time this week to celebrate your school counselors! This week, sponsored by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA), is dedicated to highlighting the unique contribution of school counselors within U.S. school systems & the tremendous impact they can have in helping students achieve school success & plan for a career.
The theme for the week is “School Counselors: Helping Build Better Humans”, which is what our PALCS Counselors do every single day! We are so appreciative of our Guidance Department & all they do for our families & students. School counselors help students in more ways than you realize. Take a moment to thank your PALCS counselor(s), & learn more about the role of this necessary profession here.
Hear from Jessica Kirk, K – 3 Guidance Counselor:
Ms. Kirk says that she always loved school growing up. “I was the kid who cried on the last day of school because I never wanted it to end!” she recalls. When she was preparing to graduate from college, she wasn’t sure what career path she wanted to pursue. “I found school counseling and immediately knew that it was where I was meant to be. It combined my love for the school environment and getting to spend time with/support students, giving them the type of school experience that I had!”
Next, Ms. Kirk says that a favorite part of her job is the fact that she is able to talk with her students about topics that will live with them forever. “We learn about our purpose, character, education, and other important life skills to help strengthen their already given skills and talents, allowing them to shine even more to serve others with it,” she explains. “I love watching them light up when we get to have conversations about this in our guidance chats.”
Finally, Ms. Kirk loves being a school counselor at PALCS because she truly believes in our mission of making education possible for all families. She goes on to explain that each student and family is unique. They may have family/home dynamics that may not be able to shine as bright in a traditional school setting — but PALCS allows that to happen. “I have seen so many students and their families use what may have been viewed as a stressor in their past schooling, now become something to embrace and celebrate.”
Hear from Sane Bodian, College & Financial Aid Adviser:
PALCS & PCAC
PALCS is the only Cyber School within the state of Pennsylvania to partner with Pennsylvania College Advising Corps (PCAC). We are extremely grateful to have Ms. Sane Bodian as a resource for our students! Ms. Bodian offers students and families one-on-one advising about accessing and paying for education after high school. “I help students explore various career pathways and help them learn more about what they are interested in. I offer support and guidance to parents as they fill out Federal and State financial aid forms, and help them gain a clearer understanding of the true costs of post-secondary education,” she explains. Ms. Bodian also hosts virtual webinars on various topics such as the college process and financial aid. Tonight, she will be hosting a virtual Financial Aid Completion webinar alongside Ms. Chenell Wright, PALCS Parent Engagement Specialist.
About Ms. Bodian
Ms. Bodian tells us that she chose to be a college adviser because of the importance for students to have someone that pushes them to maximize their potential. “Students often sell themselves short and give up because they’re afraid of rejection, especially within the college admissions process. I firmly believe that a student having an adviser/counselor that pushes them to be confident, take risk, and challenge their own perceptions early on can have a tangible impact on the trajectory of their lives.” Ms. Bodian also explains how much misinformation surrounds college/post-secondary education, which often causes students and families to limit their own possibilities.
Finally, Ms. Bodian shared a favorite moment she had in helping a student pursue their passions: “I was working with a student earlier this year that was applying to Julliard. After working with me he opened up a bit about his home life and expressed his gratitude to me for helping him with his application essays. He felt that without my help he would not have gotten his essay to where he wanted it to be. I was just happy to help him submit an application that made him proud.”
Thank You to our Guidance Department!
Finally, we want to thank each and every one of our dedicated school counselors! Our entire Guidance Department constantly does exceptional work in a position that sometimes seems impossible. The support they give to our students and families is what continues to make PALCS a true community! Be sure to thank your school counselor extra this week!!
To learn more about PALCS join us for an information session.