College Transition Initiative

Welcome to the blog of the Center for Parent/Youth Understanding’s (CPYU) College Transition Initiative (CTI). This site contains commentary on transitional issues, exploring research, trends and college student culture. For more information visit:

My Photo
Location: Elizabethtown, PA, United States

The transition from high school to college is a difficult one, and yet, it is a transition that is often overlooked. This site is to help college bound students, parents, and youth workers stay up to date on the latest research and trends in regards to college transition. Your comments are greatly appreciated. Join the conversation!

Thursday, January 12, 2006


Now, I know this could come across as a shameless plug for my seminar, but… USA Today recently ran an article entitled, College counseling in a crunch. The article explains that the average public high school guidance counselor only spends 28% of their time on college advising. And things could be getting worse before they get better.

It’s not the counselors’ fault here. Counselors have too much on their plate as they are called on to do everything from helping students with their schedules to providing emotional support. The burden placed on counselors continues to push college advising further down the “to do” list.

I learned some new things from the article. Do you know the average number of high school students per counselor?

Public schools: 314
Private schools: 241
(Source: NACAC Counseling Trends Survey, 2004)

And, I had no idea that:

“Some affluent families pay independent college counselors for assistance. But students who need help the most, first-generation college applicants, are in no position to pay fees that generally run well over $1,000.”

$1,000! I had never heard of an independent college counselor before.

According to the article the bad news is that although college remains an important step to getting “ahead in life,” the people that need the help the most, typically the poor and 1st generation college students, are not getting the help they need.

The good news is that there is an inner city school in Baltimore that is being looked at as a model for college advising. Baltimore City College High School has developed a system for helping their 1,350 students.

Time will tell is the counseling situation gets any better. For now, we should not assume that students are being advised adequately. Now, more than ever, parents (and youth workers) will need to be sure to take a proactive approach. is a good place to start to learn the basics in college advising. The Getting Ready section provides everything from a glossary of college terminology to a timeline to guide you through the college admissions process.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home