Showing Your True Self Opens Doors (#93)

Students are sometimes surprised to see us at the grocery store or in a public place not tied to a school event. Betsy Kanagawa has found that these moments, and other times when we help students see us as our true selves, can actually be a way of strengthening connections with students.

Supporting Kids as They Ride the Rollercoaster (#92)

To get a comprehensive picture of what a school counselor does, take a listen to Virginia School Counselor of the Year Kathleen Otal. She has been a counselor from first grade to high school graduation and has learned a few lessons along the way.

Purposeful Play Therapy Yields Results (#91)

Almost every school counselor would like to have more time with students. That’s because we know, as our guest Donna Brooks reminds us this week, that the purposeful use of time and evidenced-based practices with students can truly yield positive results.

A Counselor Advocacy Reminder from Alaska (#90)

Have you ever thought about transferring to another school or school district? Maybe one with fewer challenges?! If you’re thinking of Alaska, think again. Alaska’s School Counselor of the Year Elizabeth Congdon-McGee shares time with us this week with a reminder that school counseling is hard work no matter where you are.

Fearlessly & Intentionally Working Toward Anti-Racism (#89)

Promoting anti-racism and anti-bias in schools can be tricky. But in our continued conversation with Ricky Almeida and Rebecca Cohen from Portland, Oregon, the results of empowering student voices benefit not only students but the entire school culture.

Creativity, Caring, and the Ukulele Group (#88)

What’s better than an incredible, enthusiastic, and effective school counselor? The answer: two school counselors who share those attributes. Listen in on this first of a two-parter with middle school counselors Ricky Almeida and Rebecca Cohen from Portland, Oregon as they share stories AND resources that you’ll want to know about.

A Kee to Success (#87)

In this week’s series highlighting school counselors of the year, we talk with TaRael Kee who’s work as a school counselor and school counseling advocate reaches across the country.

College Capable with Lots of Options (#85)

Are school counselors too realistic or overly optimistic? This week we hear from Arizona School Counselor of the Year Kristina Guy who answers that question by believing ALL of her students are college capable but in need of guidance to ensure they consider multiple pathways to reach their end goals.

When ‘Nothing Happened’ Is a Sign of Success (#84)

For Jillian Fackenthal, recognition as Florida’s School Counselor of the Year means thinking differently, collaborating with others, and involving students in finding solutions – even when success is measured in nontraditional ways.

Doing A Lot for the Littles (#83)

Transitioning from being a teacher to a school counselor is not uncommon. But for School Counselor of the Year Belinda Tutor, it was a calling that has opened new doors of opportunity for her and her students.
Todd Schimmell and a young lady

An SRO Providing TLC is A-OK (#82)

Todd Schimmell is not your typical School Resource Officer (SRO). Not only can he handle tough situations he is also an author, an illustrator, and a great benefit to the school district’s school counseling program.

Trust Your Journey (#81)

Listen as Indra Owens, school counselor at Chelsea Heights School in Atlantic City and the 2020 New Jersey School Counselor of the Year, shares her personal passion to educate, engage, empower, and equip families with the tools they need to take advantage of social-emotional and mental health supports.

Changing the Focus of SEL Challenges (#80)

Political discourse around social-emotional learning has risen to a fever pitch in some communities around the country. One way to lower the temperature is to do what Stephanie Stewart Bridges does, keep the focus on students.

Big Changes from a Small Intervention (#78)

Helping students become aware of when things are working right, or the way they want them to work, is a principle concept of brief counseling. This week’s guest Carey Hughes shares the perfect example of putting this principle into practice with students.

Be Mindful of the Benefits of Mindfulness (#77)

If you’ve ever thought, ‘I wonder how well mindfulness techniques actually work in the classroom,’ listen in this week as Oklahoma School Counselor Specialist Sarah Kirk shares two stories of the ways in which mindfulness has benefited students AND teachers.

The Ropes Course Challenge (#75)

As we enter the new year, well-respected author and resource provider Dr. Russell Sabella shares a favorite story of a ropes course experience with at-risk students that produced several unexpected positive results.

Encouraging Words for the New Year (#74)

What quotes or phrases resonate the most with you? The start of a new year is a good time to reflect on these encouraging words, and the helpful practice of regularly reviewing these words in the days ahead.

Taking Care of Busy-ness Over the Holidays (#73)

Be sure to add a very important person to your gift-giving list this holiday season: YOU. This week we explore the business of busy-ness and the value of using the holiday break to “break” unhealthy habits.

The School Counselor Fan Club (#72)

There is an unrecognized group of students who truly admire their K-12 school counselors. Though you may not always realize they exist, this week’s guests reveal that many school counselors have their own secret fan clubs.

The Power of Persistence (#71)

When Mindy Weaver-Flask submitted her graduate school application for School Counseling, the college lost it and told her she had to reapply. Instead of taking that as a sign she shouldn’t be a counselor, Mindy saw it instead as indication to be persistent. In this week’s story, Mindy shares WHY she feels her persistence will pay off.

Believing in the “At-Promise” Students (#70)

What happens when a male, Latino police officer is encouraged to consider being a school counselor? It comes down to trust and believing, as you’ll learn in this week’s story from Anuar Velazquez.

Sharing Thanks: Listening Can Be Noteworthy (#68)

Though school counselors know some of the best counseling “techniques” are the basics – such as empathy, caring, and active listening – it can be a challenge to find time to practice these with students. But the payoff from using these skills can sometimes be noteworthy.

Sharing Thanks: The Six-Word Note (#66)

We start our November Sharing Thanks series with the touching story of a six-word note that Bruce Bushnell received from a student years ago. Though it was a short note, it meant the world to both Bruce and his student.

Sharing Time for Caring (#65)

Counselors interact with students hundreds of times each day and never know which interactions will resonate most. Fabion Vicks shares one of these moments that ended up being a lasting memory for him.

It’s Going to Be OK, Take One Step (#64)

Often the most helpful advice is not something startling new, but something familiar that hits a chord with us at the right moment. This week’s guest Dr. Roseann Capanna-Hodge reminds us of how we can be helpful to students and parents by starting with a simple phrase.

Encouraging Songs (#63)

School counselors know there are many ways to reach students; sometimes through conversations, artwork, sports, and even music. This week we share our listeners’ 2021 Encouraging Songs for School Counselors playlist which might be useful to both students and counselors.

New Counselor 101: Fake It ‘til You Make It (#62)

For many school counselors the last two years have been rough, but imagine what recent school counselor graduates must be going through. For perspective, new counselor Cal Beneze shares his unique insights this week with advice on how to make it through.

A Passion for Helping Students Find Their Passion

With more than 30 years of experience in career counseling, Spencer “Skip” Niles’ work with students reflects the Maya Angelou quote that appears on his email signature which says, “My mission in life is not merely to survive but to thrive; and to do so with some passion, some compassion, some humor, and some style.”

Career Guidance as an Investment (#58)

Kuder Career Coach Alesia Ruffin has a three-point career exploration strategy for her 7th through 12th grade students in Alabama: 1) Build relationships, 2) Diminish generational “curses,” and 3) Create opportunities. In this week’s podcast Alesia shares her belief that career guidance is an investment in our students’ future.

Career Assessments and Family Dynamics (#57)

No matter how often we listen to others, it often requires a different perspective to hear what others are saying. This week’s story from Elizabeth Moore describes how that maxim strengthened the bonds between a student and her mother.

Turning Tragedies into the Hope Squad

Student suicides are devastating tragedies that many school counselors, sadly, have experienced at one level or another. But there is hope. Hear how Dr. Greg Hudnall’s vow to prevent one more suicide at his school has turned into an international movement.

A 30-Year Perspective on Helping Student Victims of Sexual Abuse (#54)

Jan Desmarais-Morse has worked as a school counselor for more than 30 years and is a former state school counselor of the year. But in this week’s Encouraging Words for School Counselors podcast, Jan shares how finding ways to combat childhood sexual abuse is a never-ending challenge.

For the Love of Learning (#53)

This week we feature one of our favorite podcasts from the past year. Retiring school counselor Kent Cocking shares a story of a 60 year old retiree whose love for learning touched the lives of all those around him.

Using Data to Leverage Student Success (#52)

Collecting and using data may be the last thing some school counselors want to do. But in this week’s summer rebroadcast we hear how Kentucky School Counselor of the Year Amy Beal used data as an effective advocacy tool to help more students have a positive school experience.

Judge Not By the Harvest, But By the Seeds You Plant (#51)

While on vacation this summer, host Matt Fleck saw a sign at a farmers market that said, “Judge each day not by the harvest you reap but by the seeds you plant.” In this summer rebroadcast, school counselors Trudi Wolfe and Melissa Keeley explain why this particular phrase is especially meaningful to their work as counselors.
Photo of School Counselor Allen Hill

Helping Students Can Help Us, Too (#50)

Helping our students succeed can sometimes take us on journeys we don’t expect. Indiana high school counselor Allen Hill shares a story this week about how helping one of his students helped HIM grow as a professional school counselor.
Photo of Kim Crumbley

Valuing Family Support (#49)

Summer is a great time for reconnecting with our families and for recalling the tremendous support we receive from our “school families.” In this summer rebroadcast, Kim Crumbley reflects on the family values that support her work as a school counselor.

Why Become a School Counselor? (#48)

Why do school counselors choose to be school counselors? Listen in as an elementary counselor, a former middle school counselor and a high school counselor share their reasons for choosing this profession focused on improving the lives of students.
Hedy King photo taken at the beach

A School Counselor Remembered (#47)

Perhaps the best way for school counselors to know if their work makes a difference is to listen to the words of students and colleagues. This conversation between Tif Bernard and Amy Seigle about counselor Hedy King reflects the very reason for recognizing school counselors and the work they do.

Remembering How We Survived the Past School Year (#46)

The pandemic forced all of us to reach deep within ourselves to muster confidence, be creative, and find comic methods of relief. South Dakota School Counseling and Career Development Specialist Andrea Diehm did all of these things as she shared her reflections earlier this school year.

Coping Through Coaching (#45)

How did middle school counselor Jennifer Henriquez cope with COVID and the stresses of school counseling? She became a Life Coach and says this process can help others, too.