Do you want your work to feel like a calling where you make a difference every day?
Do you believe the college admissions process should be an exciting journey for families, not an anxiety-inducing rite of passage?
Are you looking for the training, resources, and support to do the very best college admissions counseling of your career?
Collegewise believes that the right environment can inspire people to discover their potential. And we’re currently looking for a fellow believer to join us as a College Counselor in our Austin, Texas office. Prior experience in admissions, student counseling, student affairs, or another related field is helpful but not required.
Who We Are Collegewise is a college counseling company that helps high school students confidently navigate their journey to college. We believe the college admissions process has spun out of control, with too much confusion, too much anxiety, and too many students losing agency for what should be their path to higher education. We’re out to change all that.
Since 1999, we’ve helped more than 24,000 “A” students, “C” students, and everyone in between apply and get accepted to schools—sometimes famous, often not—that they’re excited to attend. We do it all with just the right mix of advice, encouragement, and occasional cheerleading to ensure that each student’s college admissions process goes smoothly and thoughtfully. We also speak in public, write, and constantly look for ways to spread relevant college planning information to anyone who needs it, whether or not they join our program. To learn more about our inspiring work, check out this short video.
What’s the Job? As a Collegewise counselor, you’ll work with 30–60 students—most of whom are juniors and seniors—to help them find and apply to the right colleges for them. To help Collegewise become a trusted and indispensable part of the local community, you’ll also speak in public and develop honest relationships with high schools and counselors. You’ll work hard, occasionally in the evenings or on a Saturday during the busy fall season. But you’ll be helping kids and parents, working with smart, passionate coworkers, and doing it all at an organization that has absolutely no reverence for US News & World Report college rankings.
Every college counselor who joins us completes an initial 40-hour training, followed by mentoring, support, and ongoing professional development to help you elevate your counseling and grow in your career here (we’ve even created our own college counseling master class). And we think that drive shows in our work. Browse our counselors’ bios and you’ll see hundreds of glowing testimonials from families. Even our most veteran counselors don’t coast on experience. We all want to keep getting better all the time.
Doing the Right Thing, Making a Difference, Treating People Right You definitely wouldn’t be crossing over to the for-profit “dark side” here. We have an excellent reputation with both high school counselors and admissions officers. We present at NACAC, local ACACs, and at high schools and community events. We’re partnered with Michelle Obama’s Reach Higher organization, and we offer a scholarship program for under-resourced students. We tell the truth, treat people right, we recycle, and we have at least five confirmed vegetarians here. We’re biased, but really, this is a pretty great place to come to work every day.
Who We’re Looking For (You)
You’re someone who makes work a way of life without making it your actual life. Someone who’d rather be challenged by something important than phone it in for something mundane. You want to commit to a calling that matters to you, and you have high expectations of yourself, your job, and your employer.
You understand parents and their high school-aged students. You speak their figurative language fluently. And you’ve run in the circles you’re seeking to serve, either as a parent, a high school counselor/director, or a professional who’s worked closely with those populations. You’re inspired—not intimidated—by the prospect of finding and working with families who want to engage with a college counseling service like ours. In fact, we’ll give special consideration to applicants who have already forged trusted relationships with high school communities in the area.
You believe that truly great college counseling is a craft that deserves to be respected, nurtured, and put to the very best use to help kids.
You’re excited not just about a platform to showcase your best skills, but also the opportunity to learn and get better every day.
You win people over easily and earn trust quickly. Whether you’re working on a project with a coworker, meeting with a student about a college list, or talking to a concerned parent on the phone, people enjoy and benefit from their interactions with you.
Most importantly, you believe in the vision of Collegewise. You’ve seen or experienced the anxiety that the college admissions process can wreak on families. You want to be a supportive guide and an enthusiastic source of support for kids and parents. You’re passionate about what Collegewise stands for and our drive to help as many families as possible transform their journey to college.
Work Life at Collegewise We’ve worked hard to create the company we’d want to work for, with a culture that draws smart, fascinating professionals united by a desire to do the best work of our careers. For three consecutive years, we’ve even scored in the top 98% of the Gallup Organization’s employee engagement survey administered to over 25 million employees. Here’s a short video to help you learn about our culture and the amazing people we work with. For more information about our benefits and our approach to work, check out the “Careers” section of our website and our employee handbook, which we’ve made public.
Salary Most of our counselors begin their careers here earning between $55–68K. There is always room for future growth in both salary and responsibility, and we take care to clearly explain the pathways to both for all of our counselors here.
One of the more significant factors we consider in determining a starting salary is how inclined families will be to enroll with you. Families choose a private counselor based largely on trust: do they trust you with this important process? Sometimes that trust has already been earned—for example, a beloved local high school counselor who is relied upon by families seeking outside help. Some families find trust with credentials, like a former admissions officer from a desirable college, or with a depth of experience that belies expertise. Our training ensures real counseling quality is always there behind whatever factors families choose to evaluate (their criteria aren’t always a proxy for counseling skills). But trust is the X factor, the skill we can’t train and the asset that takes time to build. So we reward those applicants who’ve earned it, and we support those who want the opportunity to do the same. As you consider where you’d like to find yourself in a salary range, we hope you can show us how you’ve earned (or plan to earn) that trust with the families you’ll be seeking to serve.
We try to approach starting salary discussions as a fair and reasonable conversation between an organization and a professional who’ve decided they are right for each other. Done well, we’ll sit on the same side of the table and find a way to make it work for both of us without having to overly flex our negotiating muscles. And we can start this run together with the mutual trust and respect we both deserve.
Start Date We’re hoping our new hire can start in June 2021, but we’re flexible for the right person.
We want to hear from you If you’re excited about this opportunity but unsure if you’re the right fit, we hope you’ll take a shot. There is no such thing as a perfect applicant (or a perfect job, for that matter). And we promise to give a fair and thorough read to every applicant who takes the time to submit a thoughtful application to us.
We also understand that the more we embrace diversity of age, gender identity, race, sexual orientation, physical or mental ability, ethnicity, and perspective, the stronger the company we’ll be able to build together. Creating an environment where everyone, from any background, can do their best work is the right thing to do. And we hope you’re excited to embrace and contribute to our efforts.
How to Apply If your interest is piqued, please start by writing us a cover letter that tells your story. What role has admissions or counseling played in your professional life? What brought you to this place seeking this role? What excites you about this opportunity?
We really enjoy working with people who are clear thinkers and equally clear communicators. And you’re more interesting than a generic “insert-name-of-company-here” letter. So please be yourself and use your letter to help us get to know the real you. You might also consider checking out our five tips for job-seekers.
Then submit your information at the right. When you paste your cover letter into the text box, your formatting will hold up when we see it (but if it doesn’t, we’ll blame the text box, not you).
Questions? Feel free to email us at jobs(at)collegewise(dot)com (please no phone calls). We promise to respond to you quickly.
Thanks for reading our post. We’d love to hear from you, but if we don’t, we hope you find the perfect professional fit someplace else.
Collegewise is a college counseling company that believes the college admissions process has spun out of control, with too much confusion, too much anxiety, and too many students losing agency for what should be their path to higher education. We’re out to change all that with an international network of expert counselors—many of whom are former admissions officers—united by a desire to do the best work of their careers. Since our founding in 1999, we’ve helped more than 24,000 high school students confidently navigate their journey to college. Whether a family hires one of our counselors, downloads our free resources, or browses our blog, we're here to offer guidance, perspective, and occasional cheerleading to “A” students, “C” students, and everyone in between.