Oakland Counseling Association
2018-19 Vol. 1
The Oakland Counseling Association is a not-for-profit, professional and educational organization that is dedicated to the growth and enhancement of the counseling profession.
The mission of the Oakland Counseling Association is to enhance the quality of life in
Oakland County by promoting the development of professional counselors, advancing the
counseling profession and using the profession and practice of counseling to promote respect for human dignity and diversity.
A brand new year!
By: Denise Sandvig, Avondale High School
Have you heard about the new School Counselor Professional Development Law? It requires school counselors to complete 25 hours of college preparation and selection, and 25 hours of career consultation, which must include 5 hours of exploring military options. If your license, or certificate, expires before February 6, 2020, then you are able to renew under the current rules and law. If your expiration date is in 2020, they are allowing you to renew anytime between January 1 and February 5, 2020 under the current rules and law. However, if you renew any time after February 6, 2020 you will need to complete the new professional development requirements.
So, now is the perfect time to become a member of the Oakland Counseling Association. We offer members low cost, and relevant, professional development options. You will be joining a group dedicated to enhancing the quality of life in Oakland County by promoting the development of professional counselors, advancing in the counseling profession, and using the profession and practice of counseling to promote respect for human dignity and diversity. This year OCA is planning to offer professional development opportunities that will count toward the new PD requirement. This year’s topics will include Hatching Results, Military Career Exploration, Alternative Career/Education Options and College/Career Options.
For a small fee you can become a member, and be eligible to attend a variety of workshops at a discount. Simply go to www.oaklandcounselors.org and click on the membership link on the left hand side. Current memberships are available at $20 for individuals, $50 for departments, and $10 for students. So don’t delay and sign up for your Oakland Counseling Association membership today!
Be sure to join in time for our first joint OCA and Oakland Schools event, Hatching Results, on November 6, from 8:00 am- 3 pm, at Walsh College (Troy).
Welcome to the Club!
By: Sean Dougherty, Lakeland High School
I’d like to take this opportunity to recognize the new(ish) school counselors whom we’ve gained as colleagues in Oakland County the past few years. I remember 11 years ago when I was hired fresh off of my graduate program and a counseling department trusted that I would be a good addition to their counseling team.
I recall the stress of applying for jobs, interviewing, and finally getting hired! Come to find out, then the real challenges begin:
- Getting acclimated to a new school, staff, and population…
- Building relationships with hundreds of brand new students and parents...
- 504 plans, standardized tests, and other duties as assigned...
- Realizing that I had very little knowledge of what counseling in a school setting was actually going to be like…
Good luck! Right?
As the more seasoned counselors can attest: It can be overwhelming and exhausting trying to meet the needs of your students (and that’s before considering we also deal with the politics in the school setting, unrealistic parents, and a majority of people who legitimately do not understand our role in the school). I admire each of you who have chosen this profession and who are struggling to make our schools a better place for all students.
Of the close to 300 counselors in Oakland County, last year we identified 35 new counselors (with 3 or fewer years experience in a counseling role). That means over 10% of our cohort is comprised of new(ish) counselors. Last year (after much advocacy by OCA), we were able to re-launch a two-session New Counselor Academy through Oakland Schools. I saw many familiar faces and got to know a number of new and eager counselors. This year the New Counselor Academy has been approved to run for a 2nd year (December 6th and May 29th) and we hope to see many of you back again, as well as some new faces.
Please join me in celebrating these new(ish) school counselors in Oakland County. Help to embrace their passion, energy, and development as our counseling cohort will soon be looking for them to help lead and advocate for our unique role as school counselors.