An Average Day in the Life of a Counselor


Ava Hilger, Staff Writer

What comes to your mind if you were to think about the high school counselor? Do you wonder if their profession is challenging, what they have to deal with daily, or what they do overall? Being a counselor involves having a variety of tasks at hand. When talking to a school counselor of our own, Samantha Schmidt, she mentioned that every day is distinct from the days before. Schmidt has a setup calendar for scheduled meetings during the week with students. If a student makes a last-minute meeting, she will end up adding that to her calendar as well as a way to organize it. As the day goes on, it often has its highs and lows. Meetings could be normal or regular, while there may be a crisis she immediately needs to care for. Those significant meetings come before the other meetings since it needs to be handled directly, and the other meetings may be rescheduled.
The average day of these counselors is never short of being busy or needed when it comes to their students.
The main focus for these counselors is not only working with the students but also having other significant duties. They may have to balance out schedules between students, but depending on the time of year, they have other things to do. Registration for the next year is an example; this comes up in January and February. The counselors are the main staff members who run registration and help students register. They also focus on parents, reaching out to them about their child or their classes. When counselors meet with students, it may be for multiple reasons. They may discuss; classes, class options, changing schedules, future planning, mental health, and resources. A counselor’s daily goal is to focus on their students to assist their needs. Subsequently, having the authority of a school counselor comes with numerous obligations that can presume a student’s grades, their families, and working on small projects that include the help of other staff.
Another crucial role these counselors acquire is focusing on their students’ mental health. When a student is struggling mentally, they can go to their counselor, and depending on what they are struggling with, they have a practice they do to help. For instance, they practice coping skills with anxiety, discuss stressors and how to deal with them, or even address them. Sometimes it can be less of trying to work with how to solve their issue and how to give them space to process their feelings. The most important thing is that these counselors listen. As mental health is becoming more common among teenagers, counselors have shifted their focus toward tending to their student’s personal and intellectual necessities. Changes in society often result in differences in how and what specific things affect an individual and their mental state. For instance, social media impacts young adults and how they live their everyday lives. Likewise, how social media influences mental stability. A school counselor may have many of their students’ issues stemming from social media or even things that occur online. Mental health is one area school counselors need to address and care for as a part of their job.
The overall role of school counselors has changed throughout the most recent years. High school counselors haven’t always had tasks and responsibilities as such; as years go by, they have tended more to personal and social needs instead of guiding students into a profession. Teachers were originally assigned to take on additional roles when tending to the academic needs of students. They would accommodate their students, test their skills and abilities, and prepare them for career life after school. As time went on, counselors expanded their role in attending to students’ needs by; assisting them with failing classes, instructing them on social and behavioral skills, developing positive attitudes, keeping track of attendance, and still assisting in career guidance after high school. Counselors are with these students from the day they start high school until the day they graduate. If that means they assist them with their mental health or education, the role of their job is to be there for the students wherever they need it.
Ultimately, school counselors are a great source of guidance for students to have as they go through their time in high school. They offer the support these students need mentally and educationally, or if a student needs somebody to talk with. Not only are they supportive when it comes to poor circumstances, but they may also offer positive reinforcement and recognition for the students doing well in their classes or mentally. Having a school counselor’s job may be complex and come with multiple different responsibilities. Additionally, having unusual or new things be brought upon you daily, accompanying dealing with diverse issues or solving problems. High school counselors have an essential role in schools and are significant to accomplishing Cambridge-Isanti’s motto of “every student, every day.”