A Letter to Admission Road Warriors 

By Kelly Braun
Int'l School of Sacred Heart, Tokyo

Dear Road Warriors, young, old, new, international, domestic, director, counselor,   
   I just want to let you know something: You matter. You matter to students a lot. Although I know it may not seem like it. After spending several years on your side of the desk, I think I can safely assume this is what a typical day in your fall season looks like:

Wake up

Get dressed (don’t forget the comfy shoes!)
Pack materials for the day
Head out

High school visit #1 (yay, on time!)
High School visit #2 (woof, barely made that on time)
High School visit #3 (I have no clue where my cab driver is taking me, 10 minutes late)
Lunch (hahahahahahahaha, I am lucky to get a small break let alone food)
High School visit #4 (I am so tired)
Evening Fair (Final push, I can do it)


It’s monotonous. You know how many majors or courses of study you have. You know the rankings of your school, what programs are your signatures, the freshman experience, the pre-professional tracks, average SAT/ACT scores, application requirements, and what you are really looking for in that college essay. You can can say all of this while simultaneously handing the travel piece to each student and wind back around to make sure none of the students missed the information the first ones got. It’s got to get old. It’s got to be tiring saying the same thing over and over for so many different students. But, from this side of the desk…


You make a huge difference in students lives. I am not lying when I say lives. You make a difference. The high school visitors that come to my school can single handedly change a student's mind on courses of study, major programs, and what they are going to write in their all important essay. Students can come away from your conversation with a new sense of motivation. I can say that “your essay needs to sound like you are having a conversation to someone” until I am literally blue in the face. But then you say it, and it’s like they have had this massive epiphany about their essay and what they need to write. You can help a student decide if they are a good fit for your school, or convince one that had no idea who or where you were (there is something outside of LA, Boston, and NYC? Whaaaaa????) that they need to apply because you have the perfect program for them.

I guess my point is: no matter how tired, burnt out, exhausted you are, remember that you matter. All of the getting lost, wrong turns, late starts, or recalling of the majors...matters. Your smile, approachable nature, and hard work, can change lives. What you do is important. Not only to the students, but to counselors, teachers, and communities. It may not seem like it at the time when all you want to do is eat something that doesn’t take less than 15 minutes to inhale, or sleeping in yet another hotel room, and finding your way just to work and not to four different schools that Google maps said were on the same side of the city, but to my kids, you are helping them choose the rest of their life. 

So the next time you are questioning making a high school visit, just do it. You never know what kids life you are going to change.

Thank you for all you do for me and my students. We couldn’t do it without you,

International High School Guidance Counselor

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