From: Mindy Nelson
To: Brad Last, Lowry Snow, LaVar Christensen, Kim Coleman, Steve Eliason, Justin Fawson, Francis Gibson, Greg Hughes, Eric Hutchings, David Lifferth, Daniel McCay, Carol Moss, mnoel, Marie Poulson,
Subject: H.B. 198
Date: Thu Feb 12 20:07:39 MST 2015
House Education Committee,

I am writing to express my support for H.B. 198, Strengthening College and Career Readiness. This bill will give current counselors the opportunity to receive valuable training regarding College and Career Readiness, filling in the gaps for existing school counselors. College readiness is vastly different than it was a decade ago, and the application process is also confusing and challenging, even for the students who have parents who completed college. The process is changing and it is imperative that our school counselors are kept up to date.

I am the Head Counselor at the Northern Utah Academy for Math, Engineering and Science (NUAMES Early College High School), and as such I have the opportunity to work closely with Weber State University. This position has given me fantastic on the job training and I have been successful in helping students with college applications for both in-state and out-of-state universities. This job has given me the opportunity to work closely with admissions advisors from throughout our great state, as well as Johns Hopkins, Tufts, Bowdoin, and many others. Because of this experience, I have been called upon by nieces, nephews, neighbors, and members of my congregation to offer advice regarding the college application process. ALL students deserve to have a school counselor who can help them navigate this process, without feeling like they need to look outside of their own school counseling program in order to get answers. This training would offer school counselors the opportunity to get the much needed training and knowledge to help lead these young students onto the next steps of their educational career.

Thank you for taking time to consider the benefits this bill can bring to Utah students by supporting the education of current school counselors. I believe in the power of the professional school counselor and I believe our students deserve the best.

Thank you again,
Mindy Nelson