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Getting a guidance counselor job.

How did you get your start doing guidance counselor work, and what career moves did you make to get to your current position?

Do you need a particular educational background?
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I am very spiritual. Been doing a lot of praying and praising!

My problem is a little different. Already walked in graduation. Finished my classes, finished clinical, received my school counseling endorsement in Michigan but my Masters has not been released because I was working at night trying to get my school counseling hours while full time teaching! Now I have interviews and every one wants a Masters! I need a paid counseling full time job that will allow me to earn my hours while working but schools don’t have qualified people to supervise me or they don’t want to participate! Help!!!! Need a paid full time job so can’t do a free internship and has to be in a school setting and my current job won’t do it either!

Don’t want to give up on my dream!!!

Katanya
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Aug 22, 2018 Solution by original poster
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I am new to this site but after reading most comments, I feel I am at the right place to gather helpful information. I graduated July 28, 2013 with a master’s degree in psychology and top honors. After months of not getting a government job or any other type job I applied for, I am now studying to take the NCE exam to get my license and certification to be a school counselor. My question for all of you is, for the past six years, I have been a certified 3rd-8th grade home schoolteacher to my son, who was diagnosed with ADHD/Autism in second grade. Would my experience as certified home schoolteacher qualify as volunteer work or experience to get my foot in the door and get an interview when I apply for a school counseling job? I have never put this information on my resume only jobs outside the home I worked years ago.
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Feb 22, 2014 Solution by original poster
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I think that districts are required by law, or some union stipulation, to post the job even if they already know who they're going to hire. And they almost always know who they're going to hire. What young people going into education don't realize is that it's not a meritocracy where the best and brightest get jobs. In most cases, at least in NY, it's about nepotism and cronyism. Basically, you need either a relative working in the district, or some political pull. Otherwise, you're just one of thousands of qualified applicants in a pile that will never get looked at. Maybe it's different in the south, or mid-west, but in NY and most of the Northeast, if you don't have a connection, good luck getting a job.
Jul 17, 2013 Solution by original poster
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Yes, Sisophous is again correct. I saw a job opening with the Boston Public Schools that was posted online, but I found out later that the hiring manager already had someone in mind. I just don't understand the reasoning behind wasting people's time and providing false hopes of obtaining an interview if they won't even do that. Even if they knew who they were going to hire, at least give some interviews out of common courtesy so that if things don't work out, others will have at least made contacts and hopefully left a good impression. It's an endless cycle of nepotism. I've decided to give up on working for a regular school system now. I do private college counseling and may consider working for charter or private schools in the future.
Jul 16, 2013 Solution by original poster
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HigherEd, just a comment about OLAS. I found the application system to be utterly useless. Schools may post openings through OLAS, but they often know well in advance who will fill the opening. My gut feeling is the schools act as if the system is being used when in fact they pay no attention to it. A school clerk may input the opening yet the feedback from candidates is ignored.
Jul 15, 2013 Solution by original poster
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Do other states use a single website to funnel all public education jobs? In NY, the most widely used site is OLAS, or Online Application System for Educators. It is run by the State BOCES system. It breaks the state up into nine different geographic regions and allows the user to search and apply for jobs quickly and easily.

However, many schools in the Capital Region have begun to leave OLAS over the last year because they get inundated with applications, sometimes a thousand or more, from people all over the state and beyond. Some have gone back to the old method of posting on the school's website and in the local newspaper.

How are school openings posted in your state?
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Jul 15, 2013 Solution by original poster
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I agree that it is tough out there. Coming out of my licensure program (I already had a Master's from a different state), I got 8 or 9 interviews. I had to look hard - often jobs were only open for 5 days and then *poof*. I was encouraged in getting interviews, but I kept getting told no. When I asked what I could have done differently, I was consistently told "you were great, we just hired someone with more experience." What a catch 22. Don't stop looking - I landed my (then) part-time position at a charter school in the middle of August. It has since developed into a full time position and, with some experience under my belt, I already have several interviews scheduled this summer. I felt extremely helpless in those first few months when I was applying and applying and not getting anything, but my recommendation would be to use who you know, gather as many letters of recommendations or examples of your work as possible, and go in trying to wow the committee - don't worry about looking like you're trying too hard. It is competitive but possible! And paid summers off are amazing 🙂
Jun 19, 2013 Solution by original poster
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Sad but true, in many cases you must know someone to get in the door. This is how I got my position. At the point at which I got the position, I had been working an office job for almost 2 years post-grad school to pay the bills while actively seeking a school counselor job. With no luck, I was completely discouraged and defeated. I believed I would never break into guidance. I admit that I got lucky by having an in.

The best advice I can provide, as others have mentioned, is to let all acquaintences know that you are trying to break into a school setting (particulary friends and family friends who can attest to your character and work ethic). Don't be shy! Job postings tend to open and close quickly.



Hello Collins- I am considering a graduate program in Massachusetts.
Are there better employment possibilities for school adjustment counselors as opposed to school counselors?
Is it true that a school adjustment counselor is the same as a school social worker?
To become a school adjustment counselor/school social worker should you get a masters that certifies you in school adjustment counseling or a masters in social work?
Is it true that most Massachusetts school districts prefer a MSW or school adjustment counselor to fill school counselor positions?

Sorry about all the questions!!! Matt
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Feb 18, 2013 Solution by original poster
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Unfortunately, it sounds like the odds in some other states are even more stacked against school counseling candidates. In reading this forum, it looks like New York may be the worst - I think someone posted there were 1,500 applicants for a position there!
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Aug 22, 2012 Solution by original poster
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olewers, I am also in Ohio and as sisophus above said, it IS a little confusing, and it just varies from state to state in terms of what the certification you receive is called. Here in Ohio, it's called a license, but the license means you are "certified" as a school counselor in Ohio - so even that is confusing in itself!

Your experience in the at-risk youth school you are at should certainly help you stand out among the peers you would graduate with out of your masters program, and subbing to make connections is a smart move - as many above have said, schools are very political and who you know very often means more than anything else. With that said, be prepared to have some competition. I know here in Ohio, for each school counseling position that opens up, there are anywhere from 80-150 applicants for said position (it does vary depending on the given region, I've found that schools closer to large cities / suburbs seem to attract more applicants than those in our state's more rural areas).

As for advice, I've read through this thread and there are several people who have posted some very good advice that should be helpful. I know one of the points that I had put up which would be highly relevant to you , being that we are in the same state, is to make sure your application materials (resume, letter of intent, etc.) are written so that you stand out. Personalize the letter of intent when possible, including reasons why you would want to work at that particular school - which you can't always do if you're just applying directly through the ODE job site, but absolutely can and should do if you have the option of applying through email, either to the school or the district HR personnel. Since there are so many applicants for each position, the largest portion of elimination occurs at the application step, as they're obviously not going to interview more than fifteen candidates at most (one of the schools I interviewed with only interviewed six)
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Aug 22, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I know that Academic Advisors are typically very low paying jobs. You will get some perks working for a university but ask yourself would you be happy working in such a job? Personally, I would find such work dreadfully boring but it is a personal decision. If you are interested in an Academic Advisor position, the best approach is to speak to someone who works in this position and find out everything you can about it. I recall one student who was in my graduate counseling program while we were studying to earn our degree, was working as an Academic Advisor, so he was not content in that position and wanted to leave the university setting.

About certification, I can speak about my State only in New York. When I graduated from my school counseling program I received a certificate which is somewhat confusing but it reads: STATE OF NEW YORK, PUBLIC SCHOOL TEACHER CERTIFICATE, CERTIFICATION AREA: SCHOOL COUNSELOR.

What is misleading is I am NOT certified as a teacher yet they include the word on the certificate. The "Certification area" then defines my actual certification.

I do not know about licenses, there is a National License I believe. I would not put much significance into Licenses, they exist so higher education can dig their hands into our pockets and take more of our money under the guise of another degree. I consider it a hoax.
Aug 22, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Hey guys. So I have just graduated with a BA in Psych. I am thinking about starting a MA in School Counseling. I am currently serving as an AmeriCorps YouthBuild VISTA (Volunteer In Service To America) and am working at a at-risk youth school for the year.This school helps kids get their HS diploma/GED, and teaches them construction skills. After this year I was planning on subbing until I finished my degree so I could build connections. I am still a little nervous because of the bad luck it seems a lot of you have had. Hoping for some advice, and wondering if any of you have tried working at a college as an academic advisor or something similar.
Thanks!

P.S. Is being 'certified' as a school counselor standard as opposed to being licensed?
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Aug 22, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Just in case anyone is interested, here is an article from a local tv station (YNN) about several districts in upstate ny. The story focuses on teaching positions, but for high demand positions like guidance the situation is even worse. I would suggest anyone considering grad school think long and hard about the cost/benefit of going into education. I know a lot of out of work teachers whose student loans are crushing them.

CAPITAL REGION, N.Y. -- This year, the Troy City School District had nine open teaching positions.

"There are some of them that will go anywhere from 1,200, to 1,500, 1,600 applicants per position," said Troy City Schools Interim Superintendent Dr. Brian Howard.

In Schenectady, there were about 10 open slots and the Superintendent said they received more than 1,700 applications. That number, he said, is relatively stable. The amount they can hire though, not as much.

"It certainly does make the selection process a little harder when we're only hiring, you know, one out of 700 candidates. As opposed to other years, where you know, we might be hiring 15," said Schenectady City Schools Superintendent Laurence Spring.

There's another difference Spring found compared to other years…

"Far more applicants now that, you know, have previous teaching experience. They've been laid off from another district, so that's a little bit higher percentage now," he said.

According the spokesman for NYSUT, about 32,000 teachers and school staff have lost their jobs since 2008. He added an estimated 5,000 were laid off for this coming school year.

"Not only do you have thousands of highly dedicated, competent, professional teachers who have been laid off. You also have the colleges of education that are producing eager young graduates," said NYSUT Spokesman Carl Korn.

Korn said it is "a very difficult time to be a teacher, looking for a job."
Aug 21, 2012 Solution by original poster
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(More to above)

4) If you are lucky enough after interviewing to be recommended for the position, make sure you are clear about what documentation (grad transcripts, undergrad transcripts) the superintendent / district office will need for the hiring process. Get this documentation even before your job search if at all possible (one thing I did was request official copies of my transcript to ensure that I had a copy at all times - scanning it so that you have a copy is also beneficial). The reason I mention this as helping - today when I met with the superintendent, she expressed more than once how impressed she was with me, and that most candidates don't have all the necessary items of paperwork right away. Basically, this little extra effort to stay organized and on top of things resulted in my having already made a very positive impression on the superintendent - and given how political schools can be, we all know how important that is, especially if you are new to the district.

Finally, what worked for me - lots of prayer and faith. I prayed, and had anyone who was willing pray for me as well. I know this might sound silly to some, but for me as a Christian, faith is essential and I have no doubt that it was the major reason I scored this job.

I've been where all of you are, and that feeling of hopelessness at being able to break into this field. The key is to never give up, work your butt off in your job search, and if you are fortunate enough to score an interview, go into it with the attitude of "I got this" (which can be hard to do when you are constantly being rejected for job after job). I hope these tips will be helpful to some of you, although I know it's possible that a lot of you are probably already doing these things.
Aug 10, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I just landed, in the eleventh hour, a contract school counseling position for the upcoming school year. Since this thread is about sharing how to get a job, I figured I would share my experiences and hopefully it could prove to help others out there.

Like many on here, when I graduated with my M.Ed. in School Counseling in 2006, I didn't have a background working in education, save for a short stint as a substitute teacher while earning my degree and my two internships as a grad student. Much like what everyone else has reported on here, I experienced a great deal of difficulty even scoring an interview after obtaining my degree.

Here are the major "tips" I can offer from my own experience (what worked for me):

1) If you can swing it at all, seriously consider researching the outlook for school jobs in other states, and be open to relocation. This is especially important if like me, you do not already have a background in education. I worked in Arizona for three years (the outlook there has since changed, however), and obviously am more marketable than I was before this. Given the state of our current economy, there are probably very few states out there who are truly in a crunch for counselors, but chances are, there are some who at least can offer better odds than where you might be now.

2) Make sure your online application materials (resume, letter of intent) are spotless. If after a while it seems like it's not getting you anywhere, go back and make some revisions, see what can be improved. You obviously can't get a job if you aren't even selected for an interview.

3) Make a portfolio. Believe it or not, before interviewing for the job I just landed, I had not put together a portfolio. My experience was that not only did the portfolio help project what I can offer as a counselor, it actually boosted my confidence in going into the interview, and I interviewed much better because of it.
Aug 10, 2012 Solution by original poster
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BeantownGal brings up some very good points. While they would never admit it, Guidance Directors and School Principals are often looking for a person who will "fit in" in every sense of the word. In addition to racial preferences, I been told that men have any unfair advantage against female job candidates for a few reasons. One, young women who have not yet had children are often passed over because many principals don't want to deal with the hassle of filling maternity leave positions. And two, guidance is heavily dominated by women and for some reason principals seem to be obsessed with gender equity and seem to almost always take a male candidate over a female.

Basically, all of these points that people are making demonstrate that while school counseling is a wonderful field to get into, your chances of finding a job, at least in NY/Northeast/Mid Atlantic, are about as good as winning the lottery or American Idol. There are so many things working against you, too many people graduating with degrees and not enough jobs; various forms of discrimination (age, gender, ethnicity); politics; lack of turnover in the field; etc, etc. If I were a junior/senior in college trying to decide what to study in grad school, I would not immediately disqualify counseling, but I'd definitely combine it with some other certification like special ed, math or science; or perhaps an LCSW or School Psychologist. And if you had any additional language competencies that is always helpful. The point is, don't limit yourself to a single area that is not in very high demand.
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Jul 12, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Also, I would like to add that many times there are other things that are completely out of your control. For example, a grad school friend of mine who is of mixed racial background, being half black and half white, and looks visibly black American, says that when she goes on interviews and sees that the majority of the administrators and students are white, she wonders if she has any chance of getting the job. Many times, those doing the hiring want to hire people that will "fit in" with the school culture or that the kids can relate to. Being a person of color, you are that much more limited b/c often times your "skills," which in this case includes your racial/ethnic background, may only be viewed as being valuable in urban areas and communities of color. I have been told on two separate ocassions, by both an Asian and a white administrator, that my resume reflected my tremendous experience in working with Asian students. They wanted to know if I had worked with kids of other backgrounds. Firstly, would a white counselor be asked this question? And, secondly, those places hired me b/c I was considered of value to those communities - those were the only places that I could obtain work after applying to more mainstream places of employment. After sending out over 100 resumes...it was the places with the Asian kids that wanted me. After working in the Asian community for more than 5+ years, I'm ready to move on to a job with better pay and benefits but find myself coming up against unforeseen road blocks...which is partly why I volunteered at a local racially mixed high school this past year. I really needed this volunteer experience in order to look like I could work with non-Asian kids. And the funny thing is that I have worked with non Asian-kids before, Haitian and European immigrant youth, in my second job after college. However, I needed something more recent and mainstream to put on my resume that didn't make me look limited in terms of my skills.
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Jul 11, 2012 Solution by original poster
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sisophous is exactly right about this. It's a dirty secret among college administrators, but in the Capital Region of NY we have three schools pumping out school counselors and the numbers of them NOT finding jobs within 3 years is staggering. And North Carolina and other southern states are the places most of them are headed, so competition is going to heat up down there too. It's sickening how we keep recruiting more and more students and painting a rosy, and completely unrealistic picture of the job prospects. I agree that there is a certain amount of personal responsibility in that students should research job prospects, but the schools don't do much to help them with this research. Ask any graduate admissions counselor about how many of their graduates found full time guidance counseling jobs with 1, 3, and 5 years of graduation. They will probably not have the real numbers and give you anecdotes or percentages of students employed, because if you get a job as a teaching assistant, or even a clerk at Target they'll count you as employed. Furthermore, the survey that they send out is often voluntary and not 100 percent accurate.
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Jul 10, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Shannon, I admire your optimistic outlook for those hoping to find work. It may in fact work out for Nora. But how do you know this? Are you capable of pulling strings for her so she will land a job? The fact of the matter is there are many people with counseling degrees who can't find employment. This dirty secret should be known. There are many people who it has not worked out for. There are many people who end up working in areas that they did not major in and feel they wasted their thousands of dollars, time and effort to earn the degree which turned out to be a major mistake.

I can tell you that when anyone spoke to a school administrator from the institution they earned their counseling degree regarding job prospects they got the same typical response,......."don't worry, take your time, it will eventually work out fine, be patient."

If Nora wants to roll the dice and take chances, all luck to her, but I will not encourage her to take the same path that has proven a sinkhole for many out there. I would say more than half the people who earned their school counseling degrees will not get hired in this field. There are simply not enough job openings for the number of people being cranked out by the institutions with degrees.
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Jul 5, 2012 Solution by original poster
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You will not. It will work out. Just take your time and it will happen. I am glad we only need to take the Praxis II for School Guidance Counseling to be licensed in this state. By the way what program are you attending to get this degree. I love my program. I am at the end. I transfered in 12 credits and have five more courses to go taking two in the fall and three in the spring. So I am looking to graduate next May. I am ready, if all my paperwork is in.
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Jul 5, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Thanks for replying Shannon, your comment makes me feel a little better, Maybe North Carolina is not having as many issues with school counseling jobs...I'm not sure. Another girl said that she was able to find a job in Mecklenburg County, so Maybe I will be able to find a job after graduation. I'm not completely finished with my degree..I'm only a year in, I'm just trying to be sure I want to continue, it is so costly and I don't won't to put myself in a horrible position after graduation.
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Jul 5, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Nora, I am in Raleigh NC. It seems to depend on where you live. Mecklinburg County is big are you saying they don't have a lot of opportunity there? That is hard to believe. I am in Wake County and check often. Just yesterday I found a posting for five in my county. They are constantly opening new school and year round schools so the need is always here. The one problem I am finding is alot of people are going to school for this degree in the teaching field so I am finding it is hard. I am going to use mine however I can get in if that means working with children through an agency or whatever I have to do. It cost to much money to go back and get another. I am not going to let the fact that many people apply cut me out. NO way.
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Jul 5, 2012 Solution by original poster
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It is not versatile. Technically, you can work in many areas of counseling with the School Counseling degree if someone is willing to hire you. Most people will see the degree listed as "SCHOOL Counselor" and exclude you from consideration for other counseling jobs which is just the way it is.

If you are thinking of using the school counseling degree in higher education, like I wanted to do, such as at a college/university it is possible but also very difficult. Most colleges want someone with a doctoral degree, not a Masters. And, most counselors are working Part-Time, not Full-Time at the larger schools. I know that a Large City University in the NYC area had one full-time counselor and around 8 Part-Time Counselors. Another area you could use your School Counseling degree in higher education is as an ACADEMIC ADVISOR. Most of these jobs pay far less than working in a public school system. An academic advisor to me is extremely boring work, but you have to see what fits your tastes.
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Jul 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Be glad you are early on in the decision process and not totally committed, nearing the end of the required credits. I don't know about other areas of counseling outside of school counseling. I do know that at my school to earn a "General" counseling degree it required fewer courses than the "School" counseling degree. Meanwhile the curricula was virtually identical with the exception of a few core courses. I would take a guess that the competition for employment would not be as fierce in other areas of counseling. There are not that many school counseling positions available in schools when you compare the number of teacher openings, even large schools only have a few counselors which makes it extremely competitive to land a job. Ask around the people who are hiring for Rehab counselors and inquire about how many responses they have gotten for their job postings.

As I once posted here, my Counseling Professor while I was earning my school counseling degree and who also worked as the Director of a Long Island, NY H.S. counseling department let our class know that she received over 500 resumes for a single school counseling opening. This was the first clue I got that finding a job would be near impossible without a contact to pull strings for me.

BeanTown Girl also brought up something which I was reluctant to mention. I knew people who were also able to find work who earned a degree in Special Education. It is something to consider but you better think hard about this, would you be happy in this field? There is a lot of turnover in Special Ed jobs, it is a very difficult area to work and explains why you see so many job posting for special ed positions.

You are on the right track, keep researching it.
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Jul 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Thanks for responding. I'm really trying to decide what I want to do. I feel like I'm between a "rock and a hard place". I was wondering, is there anything eles you can do, or places other than school that a person with a MA in school counseling can work. Also is community counseling or rehab counseling a better choice I could switch to one of these?
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Jul 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Hello Nora - I agree with much of what Sisophous is saying...but you should definitely do some homework to see just how bad it really is in your part of the country. In Boston, I was told, one job posting received over 150 resumes. I've even met other folks on this forum and at school guidance networking events who have been looking for a few years as well. It's definitely not a high demand job b/c most people who land these jobs stay until retirement or for a very, very long time. Openings don't come that often, and when they do, the job is usually offered to a past intern or to someone already connected to the current administrative staff. Someone else here mentioned going into fields that are more high demand, such as math and science and special education. My sister got her masters in special education and has had no difficulty finding work. I would definitely recommend that field for anyone interested in working with kids in a school system.
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Jul 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Extremely difficult to find work UNLESS you have a powerful contact who will assist you in finding placement. I suggest you read through all the posts on this forum, the problem is nationwide and you will never be told about this from a college or university. Even teaching jobs are difficult to find placement. Math and Science teachers for years have been in demand. I think you are on the right path, look for fields of work where you have a good chance of finding a job these days. I would stay away from Education unless you are willing to teach in areas of demand or as I said have a guarantee that someone will hire you as a counselor.

The worst case scenario is for you to spend the time, money and effort to earn a school counseling degree and then not be able to put it to use. Cut your losses and move on.
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Jul 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I'm currently in a school counseling program. I am thinking about stopping because of the cost and the lack of job opportunity that I have been reading and researching. I'm in N.C and I am wondering, how hard is it to get a job as a school counselor?
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Jul 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I am a teacher by profession, after 5 years in the service (includes LSB/National paid. Because I have earned 18units in MaEd major in guidance and counseling, i grabbed the opportunity to apply for guidance counselor item and luckily i was reclassed my teaching position to guidance counselor item with the same salary gade. after 2 years, i graduated my MaED course. My question is I can't apply for promotion because of the Rep. Act stating that all counselors must pass a licensure exam. But during my time, we are hired without that license. Here comes now when i suppose to go back to teaching position, for me to be promoted to Teacher III I was advised to apply again for teacher I. please help me of what to do.... thanks
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Apr 7, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Thanks Shannon Haynes for your comment. I looked at the Praxis examples on the website and it appears to be pretty easy. I registered for the test and I will be taking it at Meredith College in Raleigh (fingers cross that I pass it). Good Luck with your studies as you work toward your degree in School Counseling.
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Mar 28, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Hello Shay I am currently doing a MEd in School Counseling and I live in Raleigh NC. My program is intense because I am doing it through a University online I have to go to the campus four times for intensives where I have to stay a week. However, yes we do have to take the Praxis II in NC. This give you your licenses through the State of NC. You also have to have a MEd in School Counseling so you have that correct? I used the Praxis wedsite and got the practice exam for school counseling and I feel it will help me so much. I practice the questions all the time. If the test is set up the way the practice test is for school counseling, I should be ok. Try the practice test. If you don't have it I will be glad to email it to you.
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Mar 28, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Shay,

I never heard of such an exam yet did a simple Google Search typing in the words..."Praxis Exam Preparation" and a lot of results came up. There is a book sold on Amazon titled 'Cracking The Praxis'. I have no idea whether it is worthwhile or not, but it is rated highly by customers who purchased it. Check out products that get good reviews, that is usually how I approach it.
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Mar 10, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I am interested in becoming a school counselor in the state of NC. I have taken the Praxis exam and missed it by 15 points. I will be taking the exam soon. Does anyone have any recommendations or resources that I can review to better my chances in passing the exam? Thanks for any help you provide.
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Mar 10, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Yes, always if you are sending it directly to the Principal or to the school. If you are applying through an education website where you are just posting a resume I would then just follow the instructions and submit only what they request. The cover letter to the school or principal should be very brief and not repeat what is already on your resume. It is also good to get a specific name of the person in charge and address them in the cover letter.... Dear Ms. Smith. You can call the school directly to get the name. Better yet, all schools have websites these days. The name of the person in charge is often very easy to find on their websites and usually is updated when people leave. Good luck.
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Mar 4, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I was wondering if I could get some advice on how to fill out a job application for school counselor position when it asks you for teaching experience? I have a B.A. in psychology and a M.A. in school counseling, but I do not have any teaching experience.I did my internship at a vocational school and I did go to three schools to recruit students, so I do not know if that would count or not? I was hired for two weeks as a substitute school counselor once my internship ended and worked the remaining two weeks of the school year. The school then asked if I wanted to return next year as a substitute teacher. I did attend the substitute teacher meeting back in August, but never got a chance to be a sub (mostly because on the days they called me in, I am either scheduled to work at my first job or got home really late from my second job; too tired to answered the phone or go in). They have stopped calling me and I have since given up on the whole substitute teacher approach. I do have a letter of recommendation from the school's principal. I guess I feel slightly inadequate when applying for a school counselor position because I do not have any teaching experience and it seems most places prefer to hire school counselors with teaching experience. I guess I really want to know how do I go about answering those questions?
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Mar 1, 2012 Solution by original poster
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Joe - I'm currently a volunteer counselor at a public urban high school in the greater Boston area, and the state of the economy (and of course, my own personal difficulties in finding full-time employment in this field) have definitely impacted how I counsel young people and college students when they inquire about their futures. I too don't want them to make the same mistakes that many, maybe including me, have made in terms of what we have chosen. It's not about your passions anymore but more about what the world needs and what you can provide or do to meet that need. The US has done a terrible job of keeping up with technology. It seems that our country lags behind most other nations in STEM fields. I think the trend now is to be practical. Even I, myself, have decided to brush up on my Chinese language skills by auditing an advanced Chinese class and will be learning how to design a website. I'm sure it goes in a cycle and right now students are consciously thinking about whether they will be employable after college. I think it's a good thing.
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Feb 29, 2012 Solution by original poster
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All power to you. There are a lot of parents who spend tens of thousands of dollars to send their kids to private schools yet have no option when it comes to the college application process and college preparation. They take and accept whatever their school provides. I would guess you are targeting affluent parents who send their children to private schools and want more options, particularly when money is not an issue in the search/advising process.

When I reflect back on my high school counselors, they were utterly useless. They only came into play if you were involved in a disciplinary problem in the school and would meet with students once a year as protocol.

Thanks to forums like this I hope young people will search ON THEIR OWN and find out the reality of job prospects down the road and not buy into the spoon fed false garbage that many schools teach them. Disregarding reality can lead to a lot of heartache.

Good luck with your business, informing the public and setting reasonable hope is the way to approach this.
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Feb 28, 2012 Solution by original poster
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My name is Joe and I am interested in starting a business that complements what high school guidance departments already offer in regards to preparing students for college. I am looking for someone with a masters in guidance and counseling along with knowledge of the application process. My business would initially be located in Suffolk County on Long Island so I need someone who lives nearby. This is a start up so hopefully I can find someone with an entrepreneurial spirit as well. Thank you and if anyone would like to email me with questions or with your qualifications please feel free. I can be reached at ***********

It seems like there is a need for additional career guidance seeing as how many people are going into the fields where there are no jobs. I just hope my business will be able to prevent the next generation from making the same mistakes!
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Feb 28, 2012 Solution by original poster
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don't do it, there are no jobs in school counseling. i have my masters in school counseling and i have had 1 interview in 2 yrs. there are people more qualified than me and they are choosing teachers who became counselors since they have so much experience. i would recommend to be HQ in math and scince, they are always in need of those teachers.
Jan 16, 2012 Solution by original poster
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So I am currently a college student and in a 5 year education program in which I get my masters. My major is secondary spanish education but I really do want to be a guidance counselor as well, anyone know what I would need? Thanks!
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Jan 16, 2012 Solution by original poster
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I am so sorry to read all of these posts, but I am thankful that there is a forum like this. I WAS contemplating going to school for school counseling, but I have definitely changed my mind. I am praying for every last one of you!
Jan 6, 2012 Solution by original poster
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