Current Events and Hot Topics

Please note that sessions and speakers are being added as they are confirmed.

Developmental Counseling with the Adolescent Brain "in Mind." 
Filled with cutting-edge research into the developing adolescent brain and the science of learning, this experiential and lively session offers participants key strategies for working with high school students as they prepare for applying to college. Attendees will explore the stages of normative teenage development and the how and why of delivering crucial information and resources to high school students. This session will answer important questions like, why are today’s teenagers so anxious? Are parents over involved? How have teens and young adults been psychologically impacted by COVID19? Geared towards the high school side of the college counseling experience, admissions personnel will benefit from this session as they consider executive skills, risk-taking behavior and brain development.
Terence Houlihan, Iona Preparatory School (NY)

New National Study Defines the Role of Stress, Psychographics & Psychographic Groupings on College Selection and the Strategies Colleges Should Adopt Now.
The Covid-19 Crisis upended the recruitment process as we know it, and yet it may have uncovered the key to far more effective recruitment efforts that colleges can use going forward. A groundbreaking study co-sponsored by 40 private and public colleges and universities nationwide discovered proven techniques and strategies that will best serve the students while helping colleges reach enrollment goals. Over 28,000 college-bound students and their parents shared their hopes, dreams and fears and candidly laid out what they most needed from the colleges they are considering. We will share their insights and the best-practices and specific actions that colleges should implement now.
Bob Longmire, Longmire and Company (MO)
Rick S. Montgomery, Longmire and Company (MO)
Wes K. Waggoner, Southern Methodist University (TX)
Chad Eickoff, Northern Arizona University

Demystifying Admissions: Inside the Book About the Selection Process
As the debate about who gets in to college and why keeps boiling over, a significant portion of the general public believes that the admission process is unfair. As a result, institutions are increasingly under pressure to be more transparent. But how can colleges be more open about their process while fulfilling their institutional priorities? In this session, author Jeff Selingo will revisit the reporting for his bestselling book WHO GETS IN AND WHY: A YEAR INSIDE COLLEGE ADMISSIONS with admissions officers and counselors who were part of the narrative.
Jeffrey Selingo, Simon & Schuster (NY)
Diane Campbell, Liberty Common High School (CO)
Timothy Fields, Emory University (GA)
Paul Seegert, University of Washington

Share a Healthier Approach to College Admissions with your School Community
Research shows that the college admissions process can be a source of stress and anxiety for students, parents, and educators. Challenge Success will share data that addresses key questions including: What do college rankings really measure? Are students who attend more selective colleges better off later? Why does “fit” matter? They will be joined by a counselor and a student from a high-achieving public school that adopted a healthier approach to college admissions. Participants will explore practical strategies to share with your school community to reduce unnecessary pressure and prioritize well-being, engagement, and readiness for life in college and beyond.
Jennifer Cote, Challenge Success (CA)
Douglas Tsoi, Challenge Success and Stanford University (CA)
Tim O'Mara, Dover Sherborn High School (MA)
Ella Sullivan, Dover Sherborn High School (MA)