IC3 Movement https://www.ic3movement.com Tue, 11 Feb 2020 13:58:18 +0000 en hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.3.2 https://www.ic3movement.com/wp-content/uploads/2018/07/favicon.png IC3 Movement https://www.ic3movement.com 32 32 Why Attend an IC3 Regional Forum? https://www.ic3movement.com/2020/02/11/why-attend-an-ic3-regional-forum/ Tue, 11 Feb 2020 13:57:30 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=1169 Maybe you’ve heard of the IC3 Regional Forums, but you feel overwhelmed by everything that’s involved. Don’t worry! Below, we’ve shared some pointers from Vatsal Chandra, a university representative from the University of Essex, and Hemaalathaa Yuvaraj, a high school delegate from Pathways School Gurgaon. After reading their tips, you’ll be able to make the most out of every IC3 ... Read More

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Maybe you’ve heard of the IC3 Regional Forums, but you feel overwhelmed by everything that’s involved. Don’t worry! Below, we’ve shared some pointers from Vatsal Chandra, a university representative from the University of Essex, and Hemaalathaa Yuvaraj, a high school delegate from Pathways School Gurgaon. After reading their tips, you’ll be able to make the most out of every IC3 Regional Forum you attend!

Tips for University Representatives at the IC3 Regional Forums

Select your Targets

  • It is essential not to stretch yourself. A university representative is continuously on the move, and there is a risk of fatigue setting in. For the IC3 Regional Forums, plan your calendar. Look at the IC3 Regional Forum schedule and chose the schools you want to visit. These can be existing markets, or a plan to explore new markets, make the decision keeping in mind your university’s goal.

Plan other visits around them

  • The IC3 Regional Forums are an excellent platform for you to connect with the counselors of a region, spend more time, and build connections at the grassroots. Usually starting in January, going on until May, combine IC3 Regional Forums with other marketing or recruitment visits. This way, you cover a larger territory in a shorter stay and don’t have to plan a separate visit.

Visit other schools

  • One school hosts each IC3 Regional Forum, but that doesn’t mean you cannot visit other schools. It is a wonderful opportunity to connect with the counselors of other schools, send out an email, and visit them before or after the day of the forum.

Host a Session

  • There is nothing better than being a panelist for a session or hosting one individually at the forum. It is a stage that allows you to inform, educate, and train counselors and colleagues. You may hold an informative session on studying in your country, to in-depth training on the application process and scholarships. Also, it helps you learn about other universities and expand your knowledge.

Relax!

  • The last and most critical step is to relax. By being a part of an IC3 Regional Forum, you become a member of the IC3 family automatically. This family has members globally, and every person present at the IC3 Regional Forums is there to learn, unlearn, and learn again.

So make the most of the IC3 Regional Forums and help spread quality education across the world.

-Vatsal Chandra Regional Officer, University of Essex, England

Tips for High School Representatives at the IC3 Regional Forums

Network

  • Network with university representatives from around the globe, establish connections with university representatives and look for opportunities to utilize them as a resource for your school. Try to conduct a session for students, parents, or facilitators with a university representative or faculty member from the respective university.  

Connect

  • Connect with seasoned high school counselors from in and around the community. This assists in building collaborative activities between schools or groups of schools by organizing joint sessions, workshops, or fairs, which then benefit the broader community. In the long run, this helps in building an active network of counselors who can prosper from each other’s learning and sharing. This also provides opportunities for new counselors to uncover tools and materials to use at their school. 

Attend Sessions 

  • Attend sessions by distinguished speakers. It takes a lot of planning and effort to bring esteemed leaders from universities and high schools. Please take full advantage and be sure to attend their sessions, which will help you in understanding the changing landscape of tertiary education around the globe. These sessions also guide you in discovering trends, innovations, technologies, and effective practices available in this profession.  

Attending an IC3 Regional Forum provides individuals with a unique opportunity to connect, learn, and globalize education. We hope to see you at one soon!

Hemaalathaa Yuvaraj, Assistant College Advisor, Pathways School Gurgaon 

P.S. Learn more about the IC3 Movement and IC3 Regional Forums, by attending the upcoming webinar on 12 February, Highlighting the 2020 IC3 Regional Forums – Who, What, When, Where and Why? Register HERE.

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Season’s Greetings from IC3! https://www.ic3movement.com/2020/01/06/seasons-greetings-from-ic3/ Mon, 06 Jan 2020 20:50:12 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=1079 “This can be a very lonely job.” A statement often associated with the life of a counselor or a university representative. Even though you may be surrounded by students or traveling extensively to meet students, it typically ends up being a one-person role. This is when a community of counselors and representatives plays a significant role in redefining the word ... Read More

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“This can be a very lonely job.” A statement often associated with the life of a counselor or a university representative. Even though you may be surrounded by students or traveling extensively to meet students, it typically ends up being a one-person role. This is when a community of counselors and representatives plays a significant role in redefining the word “family.”

As you keep reading, you’ll see the journey and personal insight of our colleagues for their holiday season plans and how they’re spending the last week of 2019 as we all approach a new decade. We hope you enjoy and even gain some new insights along the way!

“Some time ago, I had a memorable conversation with an admissions officer who mentioned that she needs to stop teaching, as she had been in that profession since 1982. We agreed on one thing: It is a never-ending process. We learn and we teach. That’s what I strive for and have grown to love. This is probably a lesson I learned from international conferences, especially IC3, which has given me the opportunity to meet people from around the world. Because I am able to share these experiences, and come to a realization that all the time I dedicated to counseling my students, I tried to make it a fun journey and I have learned along with them. These holidays, I look forward to spending quality time thinking of ways for improvement and cherish all the moments that come along with it.”
– Thowhed Hussain, Scholastica Senior Campus Uttara 

“It’s not only the last month of the year, it’s the last month of the decade.

As I reach my ninth year working, I look back on 2019 with pride and gratitude. But what I’ve learned most of all over the years, is that perspective is what’s key. 

This year was faced with challenges and joy on all personal, professional and physical levels. But looking through the lens of the last decade, this has made me realize how much I have done, how much I have changed, how much I have accomplished, and how much more I want to do. Professionally this decade I have been fortunate to have traveled to over 25 countries, taken on leadership opportunities, be part of a dynamic higher education community, and welcomed to a family (the IC3 family) that fosters change, and betterment for the world of college counseling. But there have also been sacrifices; loss, weeks away from home, loneliness, missed life events and more. We each have our stories, and it is up to us on how we want to create that narrative. With all that has been said and done, the most I am I’m looking forward to this holiday season is pausing and living in the moment,  to spend time with family and loved ones and reflect on everything that I am grateful for in my life. My challenge for you is rather than looking back on the last year, to reflect back on the last ten, and hope that you leave feeling proud of all that you have achieved. With 2020 upon us, my wish for you is that it’s not only the best year to come, but the best decade to be the greatest version of yourself.”
Alisha Koumphol, Ryerson University, Canada

“Seasons greetings to my IC3 friends! Like many people, this time of year is about family and stopping to appreciate those around us. This year we’ll be in North Carolina with our three kids, doing what we enjoy most when we’re together:  eat, drink and be merry! Additionally, as much as I want to disconnect from social media, I also enjoy “spending time” with my international family, celebrating with them as well as supporting them as I know this time of year is not easy for everybody.  I am grateful for the kindness of others in my life, more than ever, and vow to pay it forward in 2020. Wishing you all the best in the new year!”
Bridget Herrera, American International School of Dhaka

The family of counselors and representatives of IC3 wish you all a wonderful holiday season and entry into a new decade. Take this time to relax, do what brings you joy, and reflect on how all of us can be part of every student’s dream! 

Let’s go, 2020! We’re ready for you!

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#StudentExcellence: Priya Rajbhandary https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/05/06/studentexcellence-priya-rajbhandary/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/05/06/studentexcellence-priya-rajbhandary/#respond Mon, 06 May 2019 16:36:10 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=850 IC3 is excited to highlight Priya Rajbhandary next for the #StudentExcellence project! Priya is in her first year of the International Baccalaureate® (IB) Diploma Program (DP) and comes to us from Ullens School in Kathmandu, Nepal. The Ullens School is a non-profit school situated in Khumaltar, Lalitpur, Nepal. Established in 2006, it offers classes from kindergarten to grade 10 and ... Read More

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IC3 is excited to highlight Priya Rajbhandary next for the #StudentExcellence project! Priya is in her first year of the International Baccalaureate® (IB) Diploma Program (DP) and comes to us from Ullens School in Kathmandu, Nepal. The Ullens School is a non-profit school situated in Khumaltar, Lalitpur, Nepal. Established in 2006, it offers classes from kindergarten to grade 10 and is the only educational institution in Nepal that offers the IBDP.

The IC3 Regional Forum was hosted at Ullens School on 26 January 2019 and Priya was nominated by their head academic counselor! Enjoy reading and watching Priya’s video so you can get to know her and what her plans are for the future.

Priya Rajbhandary

IC3: What are some current projects (and clubs) you’re working on in school?

Priya: I am a part of Kura Kaani, a talk show organized by the students of Ullens School where speakers are invited to share their stories and experiences. I am also a part of the Journalism Club. Additionally, a group of friends and I founded a club to archive memories and report activities around school.

IC3: What do you like to do in your free time away from school?

Priya: I’m usually painting and reading during my free time, and I like spending time with my friends and family as well.

IC3: What are you interested in studying once you finish high school?

Priya: I do have a diverse set of interests from reading to writing, and I would probably want to delve into Journalism, Political Science, as well as Gender Studies. But, I do want to keep my options open and I feel like going to a liberal arts college in the U.S. will allow me to do so.

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The Road to IC3: I Delayed the Inevitable https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/04/08/the-road-to-ic3-i-delayed-the-inevitable/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/04/08/the-road-to-ic3-i-delayed-the-inevitable/#respond Mon, 08 Apr 2019 22:55:23 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=823 After the high-octane sessions at the IC3 Regional Forum in Bengaluru, here I am, a couple of days later recounting all the memories before I took the road to IC3. Back in 2014, every time I walked in to my Physics class, I looked at those eager faces, turned to solve an equation on the board and asked myself, “how ... Read More

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After the high-octane sessions at the IC3 Regional Forum in Bengaluru, here I am, a couple of days later recounting all the memories before I took the road to IC3.

Back in 2014, every time I walked in to my Physics class, I looked at those eager faces, turned to solve an equation on the board and asked myself, “how many of them would want to study physics later in life?” or “am I guiding them right?” or “what if that boy doesn’t even know what he wants to do?” or “am I thrusting Physics on them?” or “what else can I do?” or “can I teach them how to choose what they want to learn?”

I had countless questions. It was 2016 – the year IC3 was instituted and the same year I realized I was delaying the inevitable. I was asked to lead the college counseling department in my school. With myriad feelings inside every day, I was far from conquering the world outside. I feared rejection; I feared failure – just like any other student waiting to write an important test of life. 

I came with no set qualifications or degrees to back me up. All I knew was that the world is changing and it was about time that we educators paved the way for better career choices. It took sleepless nights making notes, visiting every college website I knew, subscribing to newsletters, writing emails to universities and much more. My questions went exponential and the void of unawareness left me despaired at times.

Two months into 2016, I was still navigating through the yellow pages of colleges during free hours, reading career magazines during lunch and every bit of new information left me more overwhelmed than ever. One morning I received an email from the IC3 team, followed by a phone call, inviting me to the first conference. I delayed the inevitable again. I gave the conference a pass.

In a tiny room with less than 20 students, I thought that was my universe until IC3 gave me a second chance. This time I made it. Even at this point in time, I had no idea what IC3 entailed. It unfolded to be the answer for every question of mine that had left me a tad shattered earlier. Each session brought me closer to my goals. Every peer I met shared a common mission. It was the much-needed pilgrimage to hone my career counseling skills.

I had never attended a gathering of this scale in my entire lifetime. It was amazing to witness the drive, passion and motivation to make a difference in the student’s lives. The connections I made are life-long; the ideas we exchange today are insightful. I am equipped to combat redundancy. From destination IC3, I restarted my journey in college counseling.

For more information on the Annual IC3 Conference, please visit www.ic3conference.com.

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#StudentExcellence: Soumya Swain https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/04/04/studentexcellence-soumya-swain/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/04/04/studentexcellence-soumya-swain/#respond Thu, 04 Apr 2019 11:23:45 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=829 Soumya Swain is whom we are highlighting next for the #StudentExcellence project! Soumya is in grade 12 and comes to us from The Sanskaar Valley School in Bhopal, India. The IC3 Regional Forum was hosted there on 17 January 2019 and Soumya was nominated by her school! Please enjoy reading and getting to know more about the amazing Soumya! IC3: ... Read More

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Soumya Swain is whom we are highlighting next for the #StudentExcellence project! Soumya is in grade 12 and comes to us from The Sanskaar Valley School in Bhopal, India. The IC3 Regional Forum was hosted there on 17 January 2019 and Soumya was nominated by her school!

Please enjoy reading and getting to know more about the amazing Soumya!

Soumya Swain

IC3: Soumya, what are some current projects you’re working on in school?

Soumya: I started “The Ripple Effect” project in 2015 in my capacity as the Microsoft Student Ambassador of the school. The program itself was aimed at enabling students to create bilingual digital content tailored to the needs of underprivileged students. My team and I focused on training a group of nearly 40 students in various game-making, app development, and presentation making software. We created engaging and enriching digital content as per teacher specifications that were then provided to and used by Sanskaar Vidhya Niketan, a tertiary school which provides free education to underprivileged girls.

I presented this model of digitization of education at the MeltingPot2020 Summit,  where we were awarded the Young Innovator Award in the School Section. I was also invited as a Presenter to the TECH2018 Conference organized by UNESCO MGIEP in association with the Andhra Pradesh Government.

Additionally, I was the founder of a social service group named “Jijivisha,” which means, “the desire to live.” I led a group of volunteers in activities related to women’s health and child welfare. We organized sanitation drives in the city and collected and donated sanitary napkins to underprivileged women living in difficult areas. We also organized a six-week long summer education camp for the children in that area. We were activists for LGBTQ+ rights and participated in the Bhopal Pride Parade. We worked to increase awareness towards issues facing the community through awareness drives, presentations, rallies, campaigning, posters, writing, and artwork we put up in school.

IC3: Are you a part of any clubs in school?

Soumya: I am part of the Publications Group in school and work on writing articles, school reports, and creating artwork. I was previously an active part of the school’s social service club and I am an avid debater as well.

IC3: What are you interested in studying once you finish high school?

Soumya: I wish to pursue political science as a subject because it has always interested me and I’ve enjoyed it throughout school. However, what drives me to want to pursue it, is the major impact political science has on the affairs of the world. Every country and its people are subject to the whims of political leaders and the rules of political systems. Any and all world issues are results of politics and can be solved through astute political decisions. Thus, political science is my avenue of choice to fix issues that plague our species.

IC3: In what country are you interested in going to college?

Soumya: There is no particular preference. I have mostly applied to colleges that have a reputable program for political science, and faculty whose work I have read and appreciated.

IC3: What do you like to do in your free time away from school?

Soumya: I enjoy reading, in particular, classical works of fiction. I also enjoy sketching and art.

IC3: What topic or career industry interests you the most?

Soumya: I am interested in the field of education. It is my ambition to ensure that all people have access to free and quality college or vocational education. I would like to become a professor one day. I also see myself actively involved in community service!

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#StudentExcellence: Aratrika Pal https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/03/27/studentexcellence-aratrika-pal/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/03/27/studentexcellence-aratrika-pal/#respond Wed, 27 Mar 2019 18:26:31 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=818 The next student we’re highlighting for our #StudentExcellence campaign comes to us from the Heritage School in Kolkata, India. We hosted an IC3 Regional Forum there on 29 January and Aratrika Pal was nominated by her principal, Seema Sapru. Aratrika Pal was in grade 12, as she just graduated! We are excited for you to get to know her and ... Read More

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The next student we’re highlighting for our #StudentExcellence campaign comes to us from the Heritage School in Kolkata, India. We hosted an IC3 Regional Forum there on 29 January and Aratrika Pal was nominated by her principal, Seema Sapru.

Aratrika Pal was in grade 12, as she just graduated! We are excited for you to get to know her and what she’s accomplished in school, as well as what she’s looking to do in the future.

Aratrika Pal

IC3: Aratrika, what are some current projects you’re working on in school?

Aratrika: I just finished high school! When I was in school, I was involved in the Pasch Project, which is an Indo-German Exchange program. Within that, we worked on projects on the Indian and German cultures and climate change. I also worked on a presentation regarding the hazards of the internet and social media.

IC3: Are you a part of any clubs in school?

Aratrika: I was a part of the Debate Club at my school. I also took part and won in dance, creative writing, recitation and swimming competitions.

IC3: What are you interested in studying once you finish high school?

Aratrika: After school, I’m really excited about pursuing Computer Science and Data Science. When I get the opportunity, I also plan to take a course in Economics and Business.

IC3: In what country are you interested in going to college?

Aratrika: I want to pursue my undergraduate education in India or Singapore. After graduation, I’m interested in going to college in the U.S. for graduate education.

IC3: What do you like to do in your free time away from school?

Aratrika: I love to read books and even re-read my favorite ones sometimes. I enjoy writing micro-fiction in my free time as well. I also go swimming and take long walks with my friends.

IC3: What topic or career industry interests you the most?

Aratrika: I’m interested in a lot of topics, but if I have to pick one, it has to be Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning. It fascinates me how a computer can predict outcomes or think and learn from experience without any explicit programming. In terms of technology, we are progressing exponentially and I can’t wait to learn, explore and see what I can bring to the table!

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#StudentExcellence: Pranav Nutalapati https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/03/05/studentexcellence-pranav-nutalapati/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2019/03/05/studentexcellence-pranav-nutalapati/#respond Tue, 05 Mar 2019 19:56:10 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=804 The goal of the IC3 Movement is to empower every school to run a robust, fully functioning career and college counseling department. With this in mind, focus is placed on student development in an effort to help students make best-fit higher education and career decisions. Aligned with IC3’s mission, the IC3 Regional Forums enable hundreds of schools that have limited ... Read More

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The goal of the IC3 Movement is to empower every school to run a robust, fully functioning career and college counseling department. With this in mind, focus is placed on student development in an effort to help students make best-fit higher education and career decisions. Aligned with IC3’s mission, the IC3 Regional Forums enable hundreds of schools that have limited resources for training of their principals, teachers and counselors, the opportunity for learning and new knowledge creation.

Inspired by some of the students we have met at the host schools during the 2019 IC3 Regional Forums this year, we are excited to announce a new campaign called #StudentExcellence to showcase their unique accomplishments. As we continue on this journey, we look forward to meeting many new students from different schools around the world.

Meet Pranav Nutalapati

Our first student is Pranav Nutalapati, grade 11, from Legacy School in Bengaluru, India.

IC3: Are you part of any clubs at Legacy School?

Pranav: Yes, I am the leader of the tech team at my school. We are a student team that attempts to integrate tech into everyday life wherever possible. We represent our school in various tech events, such as the OSI Days, and participate in hackathons and contests such as HP Codewars and the IBM Bluemix Hackathon. We also take care of any computer-related faults and we handle most of the events at school, from the weekly assemblies to the larger sports days and annual days.

I’m also an avid gamer and participated in Impressions 2018 in DPS North with four friends from school.

IC3: What are some current projects you’re working on in school?

Pranav: For the IC3 Regional Forum that was hosted at our school, my tech team worked on automating and simplifying the delegate registration process. Rather carrying IDs and paperwork, delegates used a QR code on their phones.

My tech team is also experimenting with multiple affordable, low-budget ways for our school to live stream events to allow parents who weren’t able to make it to still enjoy our performances.

I’m also part of my school’s AI club, which brings students up to speed on the latest developments in artificial intelligence. We have debates about whether the world needs AI and the moral dilemmas that it poses. We also give other students a boost in starting to develop their own projects using platforms like the TensorFlow Playground.

For the third year in a row, we used the Student Council Election app, a digitized way for students to elect representatives. Previously, our school used ballots slips that had to be manually counted by teachers — a process that took an entire week. Now, by using this app, students vote on their iPads and the results can be out the very next day!

Last year, we also introduced the Student Feedback app, an easy way for students to give feedback about each teacher for each subject. Plus, this app is able to draw visualizations of the feedback, such as pie charts and word clouds. Similar to the Student Council Election app, the results are tallied instantly, saving teachers and management hours of work.

At Senior Sports Day last year, we introduced a digital scoreboard, complete with animations and a food menu. It added a modern touch to our sports day and gave it more flavor. It was also easier to maintain than classic flip cards.

A project that I am working on independently is an intelligent school suite, a school information management system. Most school management systems that I’ve used in the past have not been very user-friendly. So, I started work on my own school suite, with the intent to make it extremely easy to use for teachers, management, parents and students. Inspired by the insightful analytics provided by YouTube Studio, one feature that I’m investing a lot of effort in is meaningful statistics, so at a glance, teachers can know which students need help, students can see their own growth over time, and management can see how teachers are performing.

IC3: What are you interested in studying once you finish high school?

Pranav: I’m interested in pursuing further education in Artificial Intelligence. It’s a field that interests me greatly and is likely to be the most influential field of our generation. I want to bring AI closer to day-to-day life, rather than being reserved for corporations to crunch data.

IC3: What country are you most interested in going to college in?

Pranav: I would love to pursue my passion for AI at one of the top universities in the U.S.

IC3: What do you do in your free time away from school?

Pranav: I love spending my free time programming. Every day I try to squeeze in at least three hours working on some project or just for exploration. My current specialty is web development, but I also have experience in Python and have dipped my toes in Java. Stack Overflow is one of my most regularly visited websites. It’s such a nice community of like-minded programmers and it presents me with so many more problems than I could have experienced by myself. I also frequent CodeSignal for its challenges and tournaments. I’ve more recently started following the articles on OpenAI’s website as well.

Apart from that, I play the piano and I recently started reading books regularly again. In the past two weeks, I finished reading “The Accidental Billionaires” by Ben Mezrich and “Outliers” by Malcolm Gladwell.

IC3: What topic or career industry interests you most?

Pranav: Hands down, anything Computer Science. But to be more specific, I love programming. The continuous problem solving that you have to keep doing really keeps my mind focused.

AI is something that I became interested in more recently, since March of last year, after doing a four-month internship at an AI startup. It’s definitely something that draws my attention a lot more, and since it’s a relatively new field, things are always changing.

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Making Career Counseling the Heart of Every Curriculum https://www.ic3movement.com/2018/12/17/making-career-counseling-the-heart-of-every-curriculum/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2018/12/17/making-career-counseling-the-heart-of-every-curriculum/#respond Mon, 17 Dec 2018 19:54:37 +0000 https://www.ic3movement.com/?p=581 JimMcLaughlin, Associate Director of Freshman Admissions at Drexel University,speaks to the Principal of Sarala Birla Academy, Santanu Das, to understand the landscape of career and college counseling and how educators can shape this field to positively impact many young lives. Jim McLaughlin (JM): What are some of the challenges faced by career counselors? How do you as a senior administrator ... Read More

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JimMcLaughlin, Associate Director of Freshman Admissions at Drexel University,speaks to the Principal of Sarala Birla Academy, Santanu Das, to understand the landscape of career and college counseling and how educators can shape this field to positively impact many young lives.

Jim McLaughlin (JM): What are some of the challenges faced by career counselors? How do you as a senior administrator tackle such challenges on an ongoing basis?

Santanu Das (SD): There are quite a few challenges in this space and the most common one is the lack of awareness regarding careers and counselling. There are also situations of conflict between students and parents, particularly in India. For example, I have met many students whose parents and grandparents have been in the medicine field, and they often assume that the future generations will traverse the same path. Contrary to their assumption,these children may have other career interests, and this often leads to a lot of friction between students and their parents. There are also situations where students are brilliant in academics, but the parental financial support may not be very forthcoming. In another scenario, there are parents who pressure their children to take over and manage the family business. In my school, we see a number of students from affluent families and there is this lack of motivation in the students. As an educator, this is very painful to witness. These students are also reluctant to explore their innate qualities and strengths,and therefore limit their own potential.

JM: How do you see counselors addressing some of these issues and, then from a senior administrator’s point of view, what are some of the ways that senior administrators can help support counselors?

SD: Counseling is important, but high-quality counseling is the need of the hour! Counselors must first understand the situation to effectively pass on knowledge to parents and students. Counselors need to convey the message: “while money is important, it is only a tool to help us get the things that we need on a daily basis.” Counselors must help students and parents realize that careers play a much bigger role – that the most prudent decision is to select a career path that offers a source of income,as well as provides a source of happiness, fulfillment and excitement. If a counselor can articulate this and make people understand and believe in this ideology, much of the job will be done.

Additionally,counselors need a lot of help. Here at Sarala Birla Academy, we try and help them in various ways, including through the support of our alumni. Alumni know what it’s like to be outside the protective environment of the school, on the practical side of it all, and when they come and talk about the balance between aspiration and ability, it makes more sense to the students. So, we have a lot of alumni interaction that we bank upon, and they have delivered in a big way for us.

University visits also help a lot because when university representatives come and speak to students, students can really begin to understand about the latest courses, requirements and the opportunity that exists in various universities across the globe. We also have a lot professionals come in from various career paths and share their excitement, difficulties and challenges, which helps students gauge what life as a doctor, lawyer, businessman or an astronaut might be. The school also plays a major role to as the bridge between counselors, students and parents, because parents need to understand that the best possible outcome probably will come from the best possible life. It’s similar to being on the soccer pitch – the players with the best balance will probably play the game in the best manner possible.  

IC3 is the best possible thing that could have happened in this sphere. It has a major role to play and for the last three years it’s been phenomenal to watch how the movement has grown and evolved. Additionally, the way it’s branching out through the IC3 Institute and other initiatives, we can expect an exciting time for careers and counselling.

JM: Speaking particularly about alumni, as it relates to the conflict between students’ goals and parental expectation, do parents have any opportunity to hear the story of alumni who went on a different path than was expected of them?

SD: Yes, we make it a point to invite as many parents as we possibly can. We have a bit of a challenge here because our students are from all over the country and beyond, staying in boarding schools, but still a lot of parents are beginning to visit more when they learn that the alumni are going to come and share their professional life stories. Parents are beginning to get very excited about this aspect. They seem to realize the importance that this carries – that here is somebody who has spent seven years growing up in this institution, then went out and studied for the next four to five years in college and has since started working as well. Their style of engagement and their views are actually some of the main highlights for many parents and students alike.

JM: Can you share your thoughts on any policy-level changes that you think are required to make sure that school-based counseling gets the focus it deserves?

SD: A lot needs to be done and more importantly, mindsets must be changed. The policies must change, and we cannot keep looking at counseling as a different entity from the curriculum itself. Counseling now has to be at the heart of the curriculum.

IC3 has stepped in seamlessly to fill a void that has been empty for ages. IC3 has brought together universities, counselors, students, teachers, parents and industry professionals from all across the globe. The IC3 Conference is a hub for all these diverse groups of individuals, and it is a glue that binds together all of these stakeholders, keeping them connected. Yes, the policy change must happen at the school management level, but the role of IC3 cannot possibly be overemphasized. School principals play a very important role and need to make the management understand that quality counseling must be at the very center of the entire curriculum.

JM: My next question is somewhat personal to you as someone who has been in the field as an educator. Though you are a senior administrator at this stage, you are still very much connected as someone who makes an impact and difference in the lives of students, and I’m sure your team and staff is as well. So, do you have sort of a secret mantra that drives you in making counseling relevant and creating a positive impact on those you influence?

SD: I wish I had a secret mantra, but I don’t! There are ideas that we all have, and these ideas do get more refined with age and experience. This is the age of collaboration and I see it playing a major role today. And to that point, IC3 is nothing if it is not about collaboration.

When I look back on my 32 years in this profession, I tend to take stock of how this journey has been. I find that towards the later stages of my career, things have actually become much easier in the sense that this collaborative work has started paying dividends. Much of the success, happiness and fulfillment of a person’s life depend on his/her career choice and much of it will depend on how seamlessly the transition has happened between school,high school, university and then career paths. The magic can be unraveled only if we bring in a lot of collaborative work, a lot of knowledge and success that can only accrue because of collaboration. I don’t really know about a “secret mantra,” but I feel very strongly about collaboration. I also feel very strongly about the emotional connection that we need to have with our students.Since my school is a boarding school, all of us here have to do all that a parent/grandparent would do, and that can happen only if the emotional connection between the students and the staff can be established. The same rule applies to a counselor, and only when there is an emotional connection, the child will feel confident and will trust the counselor even more. Once that is established, the counselor will find it much easier to walk the students along the path that he/she feels would be the most suitable for them.

JM: So as we conclude, do you have any other thoughts you want to share on counseling, or trends in education particularly from your perspective as an Indian school administrator?

SD: I think we have come a fair distance as far as counseling is concerned; however, the world has moved a little faster than we have progressed in the line of counseling. That is why I feel that IC3 has come about at just the right time, and it’s already proving to be such a splendid vehicle in helping to transport us where we need to be in the days and years to come. The schools and universities have to take up the responsibility of making people understand why counseling is so important. As per me, counseling is not only the core of a curriculum, but also the very core of a child’s upbringing.Once we can make people understand things from that perspective, we will have covered a fair distance.

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The Value of Conference Participation: A Seasoned Counselor Shares Her Thoughts https://www.ic3movement.com/2018/07/23/the-value-of-conference-participation-a-seasoned-counselor-shares-her-thoughts/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2018/07/23/the-value-of-conference-participation-a-seasoned-counselor-shares-her-thoughts/#respond Mon, 23 Jul 2018 18:05:23 +0000 http://www.ic3movement.com/?p=392 As a veteran college counselor who has worked in four international schools over the past 27 years, I can say without a doubt that the opportunity to attend a vast array of conferences has positively impacted my career. Imagine your first time as you nervously sit down in the auditorium, perhaps an opening session, and, not knowing anyone, you lean ... Read More

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As a veteran college counselor who has worked in four international schools over the past 27 years, I can say without a doubt that the opportunity to attend a vast array of conferences has positively impacted my career.

Imagine your first time as you nervously sit down in the auditorium, perhaps an opening session, and, not knowing anyone, you lean over to your neighbor and shyly say, “Hi, my name is Bridget and I live and work in Bangladesh.” At that moment, you begin to weave a fine net of connections that will only strengthen over time. But it takes work!

At every opportunity, I try to reach out to someone new. This might be in the coffee line, sitting next to someone during an educational session, or just walking to the venue when you see scads of people wearing the same name tags. There is potential everywhere to make important connections when at a conference.

Introductions are just the beginning. By exchanging business cards, you have opened new avenues, conversations and relationships. You can follow up with emails saying it was a pleasure to meet you and share a bit about your school, if you’d like. Everybody is busy, so brevity is usually appreciated. If I have students applying to the schools of representatives I have met, I will often drop them a line letting them know that a great student from our school has applied. This reinforces that the connection made was important.

Additionally, forging strong relationships with other counselors is paramount. I cannot tell you how many times I have written to those that I met along the way asking for advice, clearing up doubts, and sometimes just venting. Our international community is a welcoming one and I find there is little judgment and only willingness to help.

Before you know it, you will be a presenter at these conferences, standing in front of groups large and small to share your rich experiences, and you will be the one that new counselors write to for advice.

All this said, this will be my first time attending the Annual IC3 Conference. The region is new for me and there will be many professionals I’ve never met. I hope that we will find ourselves next to each other in a session or standing in line for coffee. Count on me to make the first move!

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Some Food for Thought about Indians’ Study Abroad Choices https://www.ic3movement.com/2018/07/23/some-food-for-thought-about-indians-study-abroad-choices/ https://www.ic3movement.com/2018/07/23/some-food-for-thought-about-indians-study-abroad-choices/#respond Mon, 23 Jul 2018 18:03:56 +0000 http://www.ic3movement.com/?p=390 The Indian palate for education abroad is evolving and diversifying. Not only has the sheer number of Indians studying abroad grown significantly as a whole, but also has the parity among the top receiving countries. Although the U.S. remains the top study destination for Indian students, that proportion is shrinking relative to the rest of the world. According to World ... Read More

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The Indian palate for education abroad is evolving and diversifying. Not only has the sheer number of Indians studying abroad grown significantly as a whole, but also has the parity among the top receiving countries.

Although the U.S. remains the top study destination for Indian students, that proportion is shrinking relative to the rest of the world. According to World Education Services, the U.S. share of Indians studying abroad has decreased by 7% between 2005/6 and 2014/15, whereas Canada’s numbers has more than tripled during that same period. Smaller yet noticeable gains have also been made by universities in China, Germany and New Zealand.

There is amazing depth of academic interest among Indians, although a keen eye and some digging are required to reveal it. While STEM programs still dominate, there are surprising numbers of students seeking non-STEM programs in areas like Business, Media Arts and Design and Social Sciences. For example, in the U.S. in 2017, more than 40,000 Indian students were enrolled in programs outside of Engineering, Math/Computer Science or Physical/Life Sciences. Let me put it another way: if this group were tracked independently, it would have ranked as the fifth largest source destination of students to the U.S. (ahead of Canada and slightly behind Saudi Arabia).

This is extremely significant, and it is time the world took note of the creative nature of Indian students, as well as the collective diversity of academic interests emerging on the subcontinent.

Moving forward, it will be wise for universities to think critically about this context as they interact with Indian students and to collaborate carefully with secondary school partners and colleagues to identify trends and best serve students. After all, the best outcomes result when students and parents have access to the information they need and are fully supported by advocates at both schools and universities.

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