44 years ago I was lost and I needed someone to guide me into my adult life.
I wanted and needed guidance but my high school counselor’s office, where I worked as an assistant my senior year, was understaffed. The counselors met with the most at-risk students who were dealing with issues such as depression, drugs, or basic care needs. As an above average student who simply needed advice about college, I was a low priority and rarely received any time or guidance.
However, my job in the guidance office, which consisted of opening and shelving the college guidebooks alphabetically, was my window of opportunity. As I worked, the registrar noticed my interest in attending college and encouraged me to attend night classes at the local community college, so I co-enrolled. Today, “dual credit classes” are taught on nearly every high school campus in America, but at that time, they were held on college campuses. Three times a week I drove 30 minutes to attend my college English and World History classes and these classes became a gateway to higher education for me. Ultimately, my Christian neighbors provided the guidance that directed me to a 4-year university.
Higher Education built up my confidence and opened doors to the adult world. It still does for many people today.
Although I dedicated a total of 30 years to serving my country in the Air Force, both active and reserve duty, I had a goal to one day provide students the guidance I needed in high school.
Today, my company, Bright Futures Consulting guides students to and through their educational goals.
As a licensed professional counselor, I have additional training and perspective that many educational consultants lack. Also, having worked as a school counselor and a college admissions officer, my insider knowledge is invaluable to my students and their parents.
I started my educational consulting practice in my home’s dining room, just my cat and I, and for nine years we made a pretty good team. Eventually I decided to work in a professional office space, and I trained two associates to help me expand my practice. Having other like-minded professionals join me caused me to become more motivated and focused. Working with a team sharpened my skills and enriched my work with students. Students and families benefit from having not only my expertise, but the mentoring and interactions of other caring and intelligent adults. While we don’t call our work “mentoring” it’s exactly what we do and students directly benefit from our mentoring.