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My International ACAC Conference Experience | First Timer

After a year long e-mentorship in counseling, which culminated in the International ACAC Conference at the University of New Mexico, North Dakota - USA in July 222, I learned how to organize and facilitate webinars from universities in the USA, Canada, Belgium, and many more, for my students, so that they can gain knowledge about the universities, their faculties, summer programs, and financial aid offers.

When I visited the SimplED International Education Pvt. Ltd exhibitor stand, I learned how to organize and coordinate campus visits, career and college fairs with universities and my students. I obtained participants contacts during the conference which will help me to put students in touch with colleges and universities, and how to use students’ SAT and TOEFL scores to seek appropriate destinations for their educational prospects.

I also met other counselors with whom I have created a huge network for collaboration and learned how to advocate for the well-being of students so that they are not exploited by agents. The Counselor Bus tour enabled me to have a first-hand experience at select college campuses and what makes them unique. It gave me the opportunity to interact with students and staff at the colleges and universities that I visited and I learned what they have to offer. It gave me the opportunity to appreciate the infrastructure, innovative programs, the beauty of each campus, the hospitality of the people, and their culture. I also had the room to relax, connect with other counselors, and admission officers, with whom we learned from each other, had fun, took souvenir pictures and boosted our morale for the upcoming application cycle.

Meeting with admission officers in person and holding conversations with them increased my confidence in the work we do. I now have more insights into the options for higher education that I can propose to my students. I am now able to guide my students to select the right prerequisite courses that will permit them to meet the admission standards of universities and colleges that I visited during the bus tour, and choose innovative fields of study so that they can easily get jobs after their studies. The bus tour opened my mind to properly determine which of my students will be happy on which campus and to diversify the colleges my students attend. It permitted me to appreciate the diversity of the colleges and I can tell my students and their parents about it in a more convincing way.

The scholar mentor program has helped me to develop a counseling curriculum so that I can plan an individual annual counseling program for each student. Participating in the scholar mentor program has permitted me to learn how to support third culture kids so that they have a chance to pursue their educational and career goals after high school successfully.

- Sylvia Ebune | 2022 International ACAC Scholar | Cameroon

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