Admissions Counselor: Job Description, Duties and Requirements
Admissions counselors usually work at colleges or universities to recruit students, assist students with admissions paperwork, and do outreach work to promote their school. Some admissions counselors are hired by high schools to assist their outgoing seniors with the undergraduate application process.
Admissions counselors, both at the high school and college level, have a wide variety of responsibilities involved with the application process. At the college level, counselors often work to improve the school's visibility throughout the community and to entice potential applicants. At the high school level, they help students apply to the colleges, universities, or technical schools of their choice.
When working with high school students, admissions counselors are expected to have a wide range of knowledge regarding specific educational, vocational and certificate programs that may interest students after graduation. They should have a keen understanding of various college applications, and they should be able to assist students in obtaining the necessary documentation needed for the application process.
In addition, high school counselors typically have to spend one-on-one time with students during the application process and help them choose high school courses that will meet college requirements. Students will also need help meeting application deadlines and deciding what programs are best suited for their career goals.
Admissions counselors who work at the postsecondary level will be expected to organize recruitment events for their school where they promote their school to potential students and their parents. They meet with incoming students to discuss the application status and to provide them with information about financial aid, scholarships, programs and majors. Counselors also need to meet with alumni and create networking systems to find promising potential applicants.
Requirements to Become an Admissions Counselor
Requirements for high school and postsecondary counselors can vary according to school districts, institutional regulations and state laws. Many schools require a bachelor's degree in a relevant field and experience working with people. Admissions counselors need solid organizational, interpersonal and communication skills in order to connect with students.
Employment and Salary Information
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that employment opportunities for postsecondary education administrators and school and career counselors, both of which may include admissions counselors, are estimated to experience an increase of 15% between 2012 and 2022, which is faster than average increase for all occupations within the nation (www.bls.gov). The BLS also reports that as of May 2013, general educational and school counselors earned an average annual salary of $56,160. PayScale.com states that the median salary for admissions counselors was $34,544, as of 2014.
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