Monday, July 22, 2013


Carol M from The Middle School Counselor nominated me for the Liebster Award.  It's an award for newbie bloggers with less than 200 followers to promote new and upcoming blogs. I was very honored that others find my blog relevant. According to Sopphey Says, it's an award that other bloggers bestow onto one another to help promote blogs. Nonetheless...I am honored and will play along.

So the rules: 

I must: 
1. Link back to the blog that nominated me.

2. Nominate 5-11 blogs with fewer than 200 followers.

3. Answer the questions posted for you by your nominator.

4. Share 11 random facts about yourself.

5. Create 11 questions for your nominees.

6. Contact your nominees and let them know you nominated them.  

So here are my facts and the answers to the questions that I need to answer:

Nominee's Facts
  1. I just started to eat peas
  2. I would move to a tropical island if I could
  3. I love twizzlers
  4. I own the Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello Beach Blanket Movie Collection
  5. I can make a mean cosmopolitan
  6. I have a niece and nephew
  7. I am Rhode Island born and I'm Rhode Island bred
  8. I donate to my college alumni fund
  9. I have a carbon monoxide detector in my house
  10. I LOVE the beach
  11. To Sir with Love and Guess Who's Coming to Dinner (the original) are some of my favorite movies
Nominees' Questions:

  1. What made you start blogging? 
    • Because of my job as a district coordinator I have access to a lot of resources. I help counselors all the job, state organization, master's I thought, why not take it global?
  2. What are your favorite outside of school activities?
    • I LOVE watching HGTV, gardening, going to the beach and making my mom laugh!
  3. What other forms of social media do you use?
    • Linkedin, Twitter, facebook, ASCA Scene
  4. Where do you see yourself 5 years from now?
    • Being an even BIGGER ADVOCATE for school counseling
  5. What other jobs did you dream of when you were younger?
    • Teacher, Marriage Counselor
  6. What made you decide to be a School Counselor?
    • I had an AWFUL "guidance" counselor. Just awful! I never wanted anyone to go through what I went through my senior year in high school.
  7. What advice do you have for others thinking about starting a blog?
    • Write about what is important to you. Stay true to yourself!
  8. Do you have a blog feature (or article) that you are most proud of?
  9. Who is your superhero?
    • My mother. She is stronger than she thinks she is.
  10. What is your favorite quote?
    • Just leap! The net will appear!
Congrats to ALL bloggers out there making a difference in someone's life!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

College Access and Success for Students Experiencing Homelessness: A Toolkit for Educators and Service Providers

Our School Social Worker Coordinator sent this link out the other day. What a great resource for school counselors advocating for college access for homeless students!
This toolkit provides essential information you need when working with higher education institutions.

"The past several years have seen a heightened interest in the issue of access to higher education for students experiencing homelessness. This heightened interest is due, at least in part, to the September 2007 passing of the College Cost Reduction and Access Act, including its provisions related to unaccompanied homeless youth. As interest in the issue increased, the National Association for the Education of Homeless Children and Youth (NAEHCY) realized the need for a resource that would provide information on a variety of topics related to college access and success for homeless youth." 

College Access for Homeless Students

Loan Forgiveness Programs

Block letters of words "yes" and "no" with "forgive" spelled out in the middle of them.

This is a relatively easy post. I have two words for you. School loans. Check out the link below to see if you qualify to have some of your loan amounts decreased.

Loan Forgiveness Programs

There is Nothing Like an ASCA Conference!

The ASCA Conference was excellent! This was my 7th conference in a row and it did not disappoint! They had one of the highest attendance records in years...2,000 school counselors! One good thing about attending every year is you get to make contacts with school counselors from all over the world. It is so nice to see familiar faces year after year. This year also had some of the best workshops as well. Here are some highlights:
Roll Call - At the opening ceremony the ASCA Board does a roll call of all the states. This has really turned into a competition. States sit together and cheer and scream when their state is called. There are banners, posters, whistles, pom-poms, fans, and so much more! This year the Chair of the Board, Dr. Sylinda Banks, is a you know we represented...white visors with VSCA on them and white heart-shaped fans that boasted "Sylinda - Virginia's Finest" on them. VA also had 150 counselors attend!
Speakers - Chef Jeff and Rachel Simmons were AWESOME!!!! Chef Jeff shared his story about being a former crack dealer to being one of the most respected chefs in the world. Rachel Simmons' presented about relational aggression and how we can aid in female development. What stood out for me is that what girls learn they carry into adulthood effecting adult female relationships as well.
FOOD - The hotel was right across from the Reading Market (think Reading Railroad in Monopoly). Every kind of food, you can think of was in that market, fresh fruit, fresh seafood and meat, soul food, Kosher food, Thai, Chinese, Amish...steak and cheese, pastry shops. AMAZING!
Sightseeing - One thing I love about any ASCA Conference is that there is always time to do some sightseeing. I love history and tours, so I go on one every time I travel. Philadelphia was no exception. I saw the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall, South St., the "LOVE" sign and lots of other sights.
Exhibit Hall - Get a free t-shirt! Visit Pat Martin at the NOSCA booth! Go to the ASCA Bookstore! Tons of freebies from colleges, career and trade, military, technology businesses, book vendors, etc. Grab a free lunch from ASCA, too! Guaranteed you will visit the exhibit hall at least 3 times while you are there. 
Workshops - Every year the workshops just keep getting better and this year was no exception. It was so hard to choose. They key is to pick workshops that can enhance what you already do or give you ideas for something you plan on implementing. Thank goodness you can download the handouts from the ASCA Conference app.
RAMP Awards - This was my second RAMP Awards dinner. It is so nice to see school counselors from across the nation receive recognition for their school counseling programs. This past year I volunteered as a Ramp Reviewer, so it was especially rewarding for me.
If you have never been to an ASCA conference, then you need to go at least once in your career. Bring your family! Make a vacation out of it. Bring your friends! Make it a Girl's Getaway or a Dude's Weekend. It's totally worth it! You can even write it off on your taxes!
I can't wait until 2014! The ASCA conference is in Florida. Disney World, outlet malls and All-you-can-eat lobster, here I come!!!!