Connections between high school college counselors and admissions officers are often mutually beneficial, although they can be tricky to navigate. While the willingness to form these relationships can vary, many admissions officers are open to, if not actively seeking out, lines of communication with college counselors. The complications in these connections comes into play if the relationship becomes too casual and loses its professionalism. However, as long as no special attention or consideration is expected or given, these relationships can be easy to foster as well as beneficial, not only to both parties, but more importantly to the students.
Professionalism is the key when forming relationships between high school college counselors and admissions officers. All contact should remain strictly informational, and there should be no lobbying or special consideration. For example, it is inappropriate for college counselors to contact admissions officers to campaign for their students. The same goes for admissions officers pushing counselors to recommend their institution over others that would be a better fit for some students. As long as these professional boundaries are respected by both parties, the connections can be helpful for everyone involved.
Professional relationships between high school college counselors and admissions officers allow open communication and improved understanding all around. There are benefits for both parties, as well as their students, that come with this type of connection. Admissions officers are able to be better informed on potential students’ backgrounds and records, as well as having the opportunity to reach out for clarification if it is needed. This leads to more informed decisions regarding admissions overall. Admissions officers also gain more detailed knowledge about various high schools, allowing them to better interpret and evaluate applications. Additionally, admissions officers can boost their application numbers by educating college counselors about their institution. College admissions officers are not the only ones that benefit from these relationships, however. By building connections with colleges, high school college counselors are better able to assist their students. These counselors are vital to helping students determine what schools to apply for and eventually attend, so obtaining information on what different colleges are looking for is critical. More in depth knowledge about specific colleges allows for more informed and personalized recommendations for each student.
Lines of Communication
There are various ways that this open line of communication can be fostered and either party can be the one to reach out. Campus and school visits, as well as conferences and college fairs, offer opportunities for contact. It is considered common practice for colleges to send representatives to high schools to meet with students and counselors. Admissions will often contact high school college counselors to give them information about their institution. They also frequently invite college counselors for campus visits and tours, as well as hosting them for breakfast, coffee, or training sessions. This allows the college counselors to better recommend colleges to their students based on a thorough understanding of the institution. College counselors are able to reach out to admissions officers to arrange campus tours in order to learn more about the school as well. Additionally, any high school college counselor looking to begin building this type of connection with an institution can contact admissions, outreach, recruitment, or any other similarly named department to get the ball rolling. Any questions regarding a campus, process of admission, application, or financial aid can also be directed to admissions officers.
Although relationships between high school college counselors and admissions officers can be complicated, as long as a level of professional distance is kept, benefits can be seen by both sides. The open communication between high schools and colleges leads to a greater understanding all around. This allows the admissions officers and college counselors to more accurately do their respective jobs, which in turn benefits the students. With high schools and colleges working together, students are able to receive the most personalized attention possible, resulting in the best college match for the individual.