- Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Lawrenceville Associate Directors of College Counseling Tim Cross, George Long, and Courtney Roach shared their expertise at the 2022 Association of College Counselors in Independent Schools (ACCIS) Summer Institute. The conference took place June 26-29 at the University of Oregon in Eugene, Ore.
Roach teamed up with Adam Materasso (Pennington School director of college counseling) to discuss tools and strategies to empower first generation families – whether that “first” is the first student to attend college, an independent school, or an unfamiliar or seemingly unreachable educational institution. Topics included understanding emotions of first generation students and families, programming for Parents Weekends, exposure opportunities, faculty support, and community-based organization collaboration. They will present again - with Lawrenceville Associate Director of College Counseling Beth Foulk, who helped create the presentation but was unable to attend the ACCIS Institute - at the National Association of College Admission Counseling (NACAC) conference in Houston, Texas, in September. Director of Sponsor-a-Scholar at the non-profit Philadelphia Futures Ellen Ridyard will join them as a co-presenter.
Cross addressed ways to grow counselor engagement through resonant leadership. He explored employee engagement in independent schools, the need to tailor support for counselors with an equity lens for personal growth, and the methods of authentic and resonant leadership needed to maintain a successful and inclusive office. His article, “To Educate is to Lead: Empowering Counselors as Leaders,” was published by ACCIS in April.
“My goals for this presentation were to help college counseling professionals understand employee engagement and its place in education, to show them that there are proactive leadership practices they can perform in order to support and grow their counselors (all to the benefit of your students), and to reveal to them that employee engagement and resonant leadership practices inherently require a focus on equity and inclusivity,” said Cross.
What’s great about the Institute, Cross explained, is that it is always directly relevant to the work he and his colleagues are doing as independent school college counselors. According to Cross, college counseling can be a “volatile field,” so continual learning and growth are imperative to better serving students and their families.
“The work I did at Summer Institute focused mainly on utilizing the technologies available to us most effectively, supporting underrepresented students and families, and helping fellow conference-goers understand the importance of supporting the growth of their colleagues for the benefit of their students,” he said.”
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Photo, left to right: Associate Directors of College Counseling Tim Cross, Courtney Roach, and George Long