College Advising Corps

appstate college advising corps

 

Too many students in Appalachia do not consider attending college despite their potential. Too many students in our rural public schools say they plan to apply to college but never do. Fewer adults in western North Carolina earn college degrees than the national average. We believe that education has the power to transform lives, and that every student in Appalachia deserves the opportunity to attain a college degree.  

Individual advising for students fosters real results. Students who received support from a College Advising Corps Adviser were 30% more likely to apply to college. Serve with us! The Appalachian State University College Advising Corps is hiring recent Appalachian graduates to help first-generation, underrepresented, and low-income students get to and succeed in college and beyond.

About the Program

As the largest college access nonprofit in the country, College Advising Corps (CAC) is devoted to giving every student the opportunities that college offers. CAC focuses on post-secondary enrollment and completion among low-income, first-generation college and underrepresented high school students by delivering personalized, knowledgeable guidance on college admission, financial aid, and enrollment. We do this through an innovative, in-school program model that places well-trained, recent college graduates from partner universities as full-time college advisers in high schools across the nation.

The Appalachian State University College Advising Corps recruits and trains recent graduates to serve as advisers in partner schools throughout Western North Carolina. Advisers participate in an intensive summer training program and benefit from ongoing coaching from experienced educators. Advisers gain valuable professional and life skills while providing outstanding service to prepare low-income, first-generation, and underrepresented high school seniors for postsecondary success.

Services

  • Academic and extracurricular planning
  • Application support, including essays and balanced list-making
  • FAFSA, CSS Profile, and scholarship completion support
  • Admissions and financial aid award comparison and best-fit decision- making
  • Admissions and financial aid workshops
  • Group activities about college and life skills
  • Connections to postsecondary resources and opportunities
  • Standardized test preparation and registration
  • Family events

Location

We serve public schools throughout western North Carolina.

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Job Description

The Appalachian State University College Advising Corps seeks to hire recent graduates from Appalachian State University to serve as college advisers in high-need high schools throughout western North Carolina. As members of a national movement, Appalachian State University College Advising Corps college advisers will help students in rural, underserved Appalachian communities realize their dreams of achieving postsecondary education.

College advisers will report to program staff and to an on-site liaison in their respective high school placement sites.

Required qualifications

  • Earned a bachelor’s degree or higher from Appalachian State University by June 2019
  • Ability to work well with diverse populations
  • Strong desire to serve humbly
  • Be willing to relocate to their assigned communities
  • Strong interest in learning and professional growth
  • High level of professionalism in all communications and interactions

Preferred qualifications

  • Experience working with high school aged youth
  • Experience managing large projects and working in teams
  • Background in community service
  • Leadership experience

Competencies

The College Advising Corps has found that the characteristics of successful advisers include approachability, independence, professionalism, persistence, graciousness, and proactivity. These characteristics support an adviser with developing the following skills for success in the role:

  • Interpersonal Skills: Advisers must be able to collaborate effectively with others to achieve goals and connect with people from all backgrounds.
  • Organization Skills: Advisers must be able to meet deadlines, plan events, and keep track of data and records.
  • Communication Skills: Advisers must have the ability to speak persuasively and tactfully, write professionally, and create multi-media texts such as flyers, presentations, and websites.
  • Problem-solving Skills: Advisers must be able to surmount challenges and solve problems creatively, ethically, and diplomatically as they help students navigate the college admissions process.

Adviser Benefits

  • Competitive compensation
  • Annual Education Award (can be used to pay student loans or graduate school
    expenses)
  • Comprehensive health benefits

Adviser Training

Advisers develop leadership, work, and life skills as they interact with K-12, higher education, and community-based organizations, developing knowledge and forging connections that will benefit them in their next step, whether that is a career or graduate school.

Schedule and Length of Service

Advisers will work regular, full-time hours during the school year. Moderate evening and weekend commitment is expected. Training begins in the month of July and advisers begin service in their assigned school in August. Advisers typically serve for two years. 

Current Advisers

Nina Galea

Nina Galea completed her Bachelor's Degree in December 2018 from Appalachian State University. She majored in Sociology with a concentration in Social Inequalities and minored in Psychology. Nina is the CAC adviser at Alleghany High School. 

What advice would you give a high school student preparing for postsecondary education? 

Developing the skills of self-advocacy, investigation, and how to create and organize plans of action will be your key to 'surthrival'. Postsecondary education will allow you to transform the survival skills that have carried you to this point, into an ability to thrive. It gives you opportunities to access experiences, educational programs, professional development and career exploration, and to form social networks that may lead to life long friendships, mentors, and colleagues. These exciting challenges encourage you to: communicate your needs as a young scholar and young adult, to be continuously inquisitive and unafraid to ask clarifying questions to follow up about difficult materials, to establish, navigate, and maintain healthy adult relationships. Postsecondary education allows you the independence and freedom to explore all of these things at your own pace. If you take the time to develop these skills and to establish what kind of resources you need, you'll be able to build a support system that will help you overcome any obstacle life might throw your way! Remember, you already know how to survive, it's time to THRIVE. 

What you hope to do professionally in the future?

In any and every capacity, I want to continue to be of service to my community. There are many inequities in the world we need to address, deconstruct, and start anew as an equitable system! We're all a part of the same global community and ecosystem, so taking care of people and the planet will always be a professional priority.

 What is something about yourself that people would find interesting? 

I've had the opportunity to take the same personality assessment over time and see how I've evolved! I've moved from the entertainer of ESFP-T in 2016, to the campaigner personality EFNP-T in 2017, and 2019 seems to be my year of the advocate with the INJF-T personality! I am interested to see how I continue to grow and evolve in my personality for the better. 

Yesenia Martinez-Salazar

Yesenia Martinez-Salazar completed her Bachelor's Degree in May 2019 from Appalachian State University. She majored in Psychology with a concentration in Human Services and minored in Sociology. Yesenia is the CAC adviser at Wilkes Central High School.

What advice would you give a high school student preparing for postsecondary education? 

There are endless paths available for one career, one major, one goal, the trick? Pick the path that works best for your needs. You do not need to know exactly what you want to do but you do need to know that you want to do something. Explore who you are as an individual, what are your strengths? Build on those. Life is a learning cycle, postsecondary education is the learning cycle continuing. If no one has told you, let me tell you, I believe in your potential. I do not have to know you but I know we ALL have the potential to do anything we want, now apply the dedication to achieve your life aspirations. 

What you hope to do professionally in the future?

I hope to continue to work in the Higher E.D field. I want to get my Master in Student Affairs Administration. 

What is something about yourself that people would find interesting? 

I am obsessed with pink, but if sparkles were considered a color, that would be my favorite color.

Zachery Beasley

Zachery Beasley earned his Bachelor's Degree in Spring 2019 from Appalachian State University. He majored in History, Secondary Education, and Zachery is the CAC adviser at Freedom High School in Burke County.

What advice would you give a high school student preparing for postsecondary education? 

It is okay to not know what you want to do with the rest of your life as soon as you get to college. Don't make a decision for the sake of making a decision if it is going to make you unhappy.

What you hope to do professionally in the future?

In the future, I hope to work in educational policy or lawmaking. 

What is something about yourself that people would find interesting? 

I have hiked all of Grandfather Mountain.  

Lila Sheon

Lila Sheon earned her Bachelor's Degree from UNC-Asheville. She majored in Sociology and minored in Africana Studies, and Lila is the CAC adviser at Mountain Heritage High School in Yancey County. 

What advice would you give a high school student preparing for postsecondary education? 

I would tell a high schooler that postsecondary education serves to open doors and provide more choices in life.

What you hope to do professionally in the future?

In the future, I hope to address the educational equity gap by being a school social worker or supporting students by any other means. 

What is something about yourself that people would find interesting? 

A fun fact about myself is that I have a twin brother, and we were born on Valentine's Day.

Cierra Smith

Cierra Smith earned her Bachelor's Degree from Appalachian State University in December 2018. She majored in Psychology with a concentration in Human Services (minor in Sociology), and Cierra is the CAC adviser at Ashe County High School.

What advice would you give a high school student preparing for postsecondary education? 

Going to college opens so many doors that you didn't know existed. You get so many chances to figure out who you want to be.

What you hope to do professionally in the future?

I want to get my Ph.D. and go into mental health counseling, working mainly with children and adolescents.

What is something about yourself that people would find interesting? 

I taught my 3 younger siblings how to whistle, but I can't whistle myself.


About the National CAC Model

  • Emphasizes a near-peer model so advisers are close in age to the students they serve.
  • Works in partnership with colleges and universities across the state, drawing on their infrastructure and resources.
  • Serves the whole high school, rather than a cohort of particular students, to foster a school-wide college-going culture.
  • Participate in a national external evaluation to quantitatively measure outcomes and qualitative results.
  • Focuses on best-fit colleges, encouraging students to attend schools that will serve them well both academically and socially.

Complete the 2019-2020 Application!