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President’s Update: Enriching Experiences Throughout the State

Laura DochertyI love being the president of IACAC! Over the past nine months in this position, I have had some of the most enriching experiences of my professional life. I’ve also had the opportunity to meet colleagues from around the world that not only have enhanced my knowledge of our profession, but have helped me in leading our organization and our efforts in the state.

As you know, Illinois is looked to as a leader among the national affiliates. With that being said, I am thrilled to announce that the High School/Community College Visit Guide will once again be published by IACAC–but now entirely online. The format will be a bit different, but College Directors Nate Bargar and Ziggy Blackwell in conjunction with our webmaster, Dan Saavedra, think you will find it much more helpful and convenient to use. The exact launch date is yet to be determined, but you can learn more about the new guide here.

In addition, the High School Directors, Beth Arey and Eliza Freedman, are busy working on a “Counselor Toolkit” that will provide high school counselors with resources on our website to help them with handouts for students and programming.  You will also be hearing from them soon as well.

On March 5th, President-Elect Todd Burrell and I had the privilege of working with our Government Relations Chairs, Anne Kremer, Bill Morrison and Robert Zigmund in Washington, DC as we advocated for students with our legislators. It was an amazing experience and a reminder to me that our voices do make a difference in the lives of our students in order to protect them in the areas of federal college funding and other education issues.

The District Seminars are underway and I am grateful to the efforts of the many people that make these happen in order to allow counselors this professional development opportunity. In particular I would like to thank Meghan Cooley, Frank DuBois, April Bauer, Annette Braden, Emily Johnson, Rachel Gustafson, R.C. San Jose, Ali Willoughby, Claire McCarter, Lianne Musser, Julie Marlatt, Dale Cohen, Phyllis Ehret, Erin Reid, and Colleen Murphy. Their organization, creativity and enthusiasm have made these seminars remarkable!

Advocacy Day 2012 in SpringfieldAnother new effort for IACAC is our joint Executive Board meeting and Advocacy Day in Springfield. On March 14th, the board met at the University of Illinois Springfield on the 15th, we visited the state capitol in order to advocate for the students in Illinois. I am excited about this joint effort and proud that IACAC’s voice will be heard by our state legislators. We will have more to report from our visits soon.

Again, it is an honor and a privilege to be the president of IACAC. Thank you for allowing me to serve in this role.

Laura Docherty
IACAC President
Fenwick High School

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