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How To Become College Admissions Counselor

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Responsibilities For Admissions Counselor

How to Impress College Admissions Counselors
  • Review prospective student applications for college admission
  • Research and verify the accuracy of application information
  • Follow-up with students to verify any application issues, including discrepancies or missing information
  • Contact applicant references to verify information included on resumes, letters of recommendations, and applications
  • Create profiles for each applicant and work collaborative with other counselors to review make final approvals
  • Coordinate applicant approval process with various educational departments as needed
  • Meet with and interview prospective students prior to final application decisions
  • Create and maintain recruitment guidelines and goals to use for future recruitment efforts

Why Become An Admissions Counselor

Colleges and universities often have a competitive admissions process for gaining entry into their schools. The admissions team has the responsibility of deciding who is admitted into the school. They have a variety of different responsibilities. They work closely with other departments at the college or university, such as the financial aid department, communications offices, deans offices, and more.

There are many factors to consider in admissions. Some of the factors that go into admissions decisions are GPA rankings, test scores, class rankings, courses taken, and more. Other factors include financial aid, geographic areas, legacy status, socioeconomic status, and more. Admissions teams often have certain quotas they have to meet for each class year, such as admitting a certain number of students, accepting a certain number, and more. Admissions counselors can sometimes work at other types of institutions, such as elite private elementary and high schools.

Admissions counselors travel to schools looking for potential students. They attend college fairs and host panels to talk to prospective students about their college. They talk to potential students about the benefits of their university, what academics are offered, clubs, student life, and more. They keep in touch with students and guide them through the admissions process. They are also part of the admissions process at their institution.

Admissions Counselors should possess the following qualities and skills:

What Does A College Admissions Counselor Do

There are certain skills that many College Admissions Counselors have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed Analytical skills, Interpersonal skills and Listening skills.

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Earn A Masters Degree In Counseling Psychology Or Social Work

As a requirement for any licensed counseling career, a graduate degree in counseling from a CACREP-accredited university, or an accredited program in psychology, or social work furthers your undergraduate education to fine tune your counseling skills, theoretical approaches, understanding of systems, psychology of human development, and current trends grounded in past research.

Discover the important factors to your online counseling degree with these guides.


What Is The Best Way Students Can Make Themselves Stand Out In Their Application

8 Questions to Ask Admissions Counselors

The two most important pieces of advice I can offer are to, first, answer the specific questions being asked by the college. Don’t just submit a generic college essay to every campus you apply to. Research why each college would be a good fit and respond directly to whatever questions or prompts they include on their application.

Different campuses will have subtly different characteristics that are important to them and you can tell what those are if you have done some research and carefully read each question.

Secondly, students should be genuine. Don’t write about things that they think the college wants to hear, but write about who they actually are and why they want to attend our college.

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What Are The First Steps Someone Should Take When Deciding To Apply To A College

The most important thing is to be thinking about college before your senior year in high school. The more time that you have to think about what you want to do and where you want to go after high school, the better.

I always recommend limit their applications to 3-5 colleges so that they can manage the follow-up work that comes with an application. That means you need to do some research before applying and hopefully visit a few campuses so you have a better idea of what you like.

How To Choose A College Admissions Counselor

Many students and families opt to hire an independent college counselor to supplement the support they receive from their high school counselor. So, how do you pick the right college consultant for you?

Always request a preliminary meeting or phone conversation with any counselor you are considering. These questions will help you decide if a particular counselor is the right choice for your family.

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How To Become A College Counselor

  • Complete a bachelors degree in a behavioral, social science field, or another field
  • Earn a masters degree in counseling, psychology, or social work
  • Complete graduate and postgraduate internship experience for licensure requirements
  • Pass any required exams and apply for licensure
  • Apply for and earn additional certifications
  • Continue your education and stay up to date on college counseling trends and changes
  • Contrary to some beliefs, college counseling does not directly entail the work with admissions or even academic advising. A college counselor is typically an individual with at least a masters level education in counseling, psychology, social work or education. Each college counselor may be involved with different responsibilities that are pertinent to the college counseling centers mission. Whether college counselors are providing individualized attention to a student, running a small group session, or assessing risk for the student population, the college counseling center assists students through addressing their presenting concerns and promoting greater wellness. Its a powerful opportunity for professional counselors as they have the ability to impact the lives of people on the cusp of adulthood, often facing a wide array of choices and opportunities.

    High School And Private Counselors

    College Admissions Guide: Admission Counselor Advice

    The transition from high school to college can be confusing, leading many high school counselors and private counselors who work with high school students to seek training in this area to provide preventative assistance to students prior to making the transition to college. These counselors may assist students in selecting potential colleges, as well as discussing how to prepare for transitional issues such as moving away from home and being the person who is solely responsible for their academic future. Certificate programs such as the College Admissions Counseling Certificate or the College Admission Counseling and Career Guidance certification can be acquired by counselors to gain insight and training pertinent to this population.


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    What Is An Admissions Counselor

    An admissions counselor represents a college or university and has the responsibility of attracting and recruiting potential students. As part of the recruitment process, they also have a responsibility to evaluate applicants and determine whether they align with the institution’s enrollment standards. Some admissions counselors work with high schools to help students assess their post-secondary education options and guide them through the application process. They are also sometimes called college admissions counselors or admissions officers.

    Qualifications For Admissions Counselor

    • An Associate’s degree or Bachelor’s degree in any related field may be preferred
    • 0-1 years of experience for entry-level positions
    • A valid driver’s license with a clean driving record and a willingness to travel as needed
    • Functional knowledge of Microsoft Office tools, including Word, Excel and PowerPoint
    • Proven experience working with and speaking to young adults
    • Willingness to travel and and present information for recruitment purposes
    • Ability to work extended hours during critical admissions seasons
    • Strong communication skills with the ability to deliver information effectively and persuasively
    • Highly organized with a distinct propensity for timeliness and professionalism

    Ready to Hire an Admissions Counselor?

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    Specific Steps To Become A College Counselor

    The first step toward becoming a licensed school counselor is to earn a bachelors degree in school counseling or a similar subject. The next requirement is to earn a masters degree in school counseling. However, some states require students to complete one or two years of classroom teaching experience before applying to graduate school. Those who enroll in masters degree programs may have the option to complete the coursework online while working full time.

    Masters programs with an emphasis in school counseling often have courses in:

    • Research and Statistical Analysis: Students read published research and journal articles alone and in small groups. They analyze the research data, develop conclusions, create presentations and share their findings.
    • Professional Orientation to Counseling: This introductory course covers the history of school counseling and the roles that contemporary school counselors assume in school systems. Students learn about licensing and certification issues as well as other topics facing college counselors.
    • Lifespan Development: This course covers how students develop cognitively, physically, psychologically, morally and socially as they progress through various stages of their early development.

    Complete A Bachelors Degree In A Behavioral Social Science Field Or Another Field

    4 Reasons to Seek Professional College Admissions Counseling ...

    Earning your bachelors degree in a counseling related field may help you explore helping professions in terms of foundational knowledge, basic skills, and different types of research with diverse populations, but a bachelors in any field will allow you to pursue a masters degree, which is a required to become a licensed counselor.

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    Working In College Admissions: What You Need To Know

    Former Northeastern lecturer Adriel Hilton shares his firsthand perspective of what its like to work in college admissions.

    College admissions counselors serve a key role at their institution. Not only do they represent their school when recruiting students but, without students, there would be no need for a college or university.

    Take a car dealership, for example: Its marketing department develops an advertising strategy to drive consumers to the showroom, where a salesperson takes over the actual function of selling a car to the customer. Its no different in higher education.

    An institutions marketing department also develops a strategy, often including brochures, advertising campaigns, and social media, but its the admissions counselors job to use these tools to travel to high schools and college fairs and follow-up on generated leads for the purpose of selling the university to students.

    How To Become An Admissions Counselor

    Higher education institutions need representatives who can represent them successfully and recruit potential students. If you find this responsibility interesting, you may consider pursuing a career as an admissions counselor. This position offers you an opportunity to build a strong educational community through effective communication, organization and promotional skills. In this article, we discuss what the admissions counselor career entails and provide steps to become one.

    Related:How to Become a College Counselor

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    What Kinds Of Questions Do Students Ask College Counselors

    As a college counselor, you may need to answer the following questions from students:

    • What kinds of jobs can I get with my major?

    • What clubs and other extracurricular activities help boost my resume?

    • How do I know which major is the right choice for me?

    • How can I cope with this past trauma?

    • How can I get along better with my roommate?

    • What are some strategies to decrease my stress levels?

    • When is it time for me to drop out of this course?

    • Can you help me solve this conflict with my peers?

    What Are The Licensing And Certification Requirements

    Questions To Ask A College Admissions Counselor

    Professional licensure and/or certification is required for college counselors providing services in a counseling center. Counseling licensure requirements typically include the completion of a counseling masters degree program from an accredited university, two years of supervised clinical experience and a passing score on a state-administered licensing exam. Practicing college counselors may also be required to take continuing education to maintain licensure. Specific licensure requirements vary by state. See state counseling license requirements.

    Certification is offered through the National Board for Certified Counselors and the National Association of School Psychologists. Certification demonstrates your experience, education and level of counseling skills. Association membership, American College Counseling Association , includes access to advocacy resources, conference invitations and materials, discounted services, and continuing education programs for college counselors. Requirements and fees vary based on the organization and membership level you select.

    Career Outlook for College Counselors

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    Admissions Counselor Job Description Sample

    With this Admissions Counselor job description sample, you can get a good idea of what employers are looking for when hiring for this position. Remember, every employer is different and each will have unique qualifications when they hire for a Admissions Counselor role.

    Job Summary

    Our college is looking for a new Admissions Counselor to join our team. In this position, you are responsible for convincing prospective students to attend our school, recruiting qualified high school students, and helping them navigate the admissions process. You attend college recruitment fairs, meet with students touring the campus, and help advise applicants on their options. We prefer you have a master’s degree in a relevant field, but the most important qualification is experience working with young adults and high school students, whether as a teacher or a youth worker.

    Duties and Responsibilities

    • Help students prepare for the admissions process
    • Advise students on their options
    • Recruit qualified young adults to apply to our school
    • Attend college fairs and other events
    • Interview prospective students

    What Makes A Good Admissions Counselor

    A good admissions counselor focuses on students first, addressing their concerns and challenges throughout the admissions process. You should also be able to find talented high school students and recruit them to attend your school. Experience working with high school students is helpful in this career. Previous experience in a college setting helps prepare you for a job on a university campus. Getting to know prospective and existing students can shape your approach to admissions and recruiting. From engaging with high school students to helping students pursue postgraduate programs, you need to have effective communication skills and maintain a helpful attitude.

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    Average Salary Of An Admissions Counselor

    The national average salary of an admissions counselor is in the United States. The Bureau of Labor Statistics includes admissions counselors under the category of postsecondary education administrators. It projects the growth rate of these roles through 2029 is 4%, which aligns with the average rate for all professions.

    Admission Counselor Job Description

    New College Counselor for 2017

    The core duty of an admission counselor is to promote a college or university to prospective enrollees. The process involves seeking out potential students whose academic performance, extracurricular activities, and demonstrated interests at the high school level align with the college or universitys degree programs and other institutional goals. This process can often include promoting the institution to the prospective students parents as well.

    Admission counselors connect with students in many ways. They often attend recruiting events, such as education fairs, to promote what their schools can offer. They also help coordinate on-campus tours, events, and information sessions to provide students details regarding admission processes, campus life, and the college experience. Sometimes, admission counselors may call upon alumni to help recruit students via meetings or networking events when these students are unable to visit the campus.

    At smaller schools, admission counselors may take on additional roles in student recruitment and enrollment. These extra duties may include helping to make student admission decisions and evaluating and adjusting a schools recruitment program.

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    What Are Some Essential Questions To Ask College Admissions Counselors

    Each campus has its own deadlines and processes, so handling each application as its own process is important. Some college applications require essays, while others don’t. Some colleges want to hear about your extracurricular activities, while others are mostly concerned with how you did in your classes.

    The Best Questions to Ask College Admissions Counselors

    Certification Requirements For A College Admissions Counselor

    Many colleges and universities hire professional counselors to fill roles involving student admissions, career decision-making and academic planning. These professionals, similar to traditional mental health and rehabilitation counselors, must adhere to certain national and state certifications and licenses to practice as a counselor. These requirements may not be required for universities that list these positions as “Admissions Officers” or “Coordinators,” even if the duties for these positions are similar to those being advertised for a similar counseling position.

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    What Are Some Of The Common Mistakes You See Students Making During The College Admissions Process

    Students are often not engaged enough in the process for themselves. Parents and family members play important roles in the college search process, but too often when we deny a student, we hear from the parents and not the student.

    Part of our job in admissions is to help educate students about how to be successful in college and the first step is to be engaged in the process for themselves. Parents want what’s best for you, but they aren’t the ones that are going to enroll with us for the next four years.

    Talk with your parents about your college search and ask them for help with your applications, but make sure that you are developing a relationship with the admissions staff and asking some of the questions for yourself.

    Degree Or Work Experience

    How to be a Counselor in US Admissions (CommonApp)

    Educational requirements for college admissions counselors varies from one school to the next and is often a reflection of state requirements. Most entry-level positions minimally require a bachelors degree or coursework in a field related to interpersonal communications. Four-year colleges and universities often prefer or require a master’s degree along with significant experience and a proven enrollment track record. Western Kentucky University mentions that a master’s degree in counseling and student affairs is needed for advancement to positions such as director of admissions.

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