MASSACHUSETTS SCHOOL COUNSELORS ASSOCIATION
VOL. 49, NO. 7
Social Justice and the School Counselor By DONNA BROWN MASCA Executive Director
n January, I once again had the opportunity to attend the Annual CTAUN Conference at the United Nations in New York City. This conference focused on “Advancing Social Justice: The Role of Educators.” CTAUN, the Committee on Teaching About the United Nations, is dedicated to “teaching our children about a world made increasingly interdependent by globalization.” To do this, CTAUN conducts conferences at the U.N. as well as several other venues around the country and provides educators with access to the many resources available from the U.N. Over the past fourteen years, AnneMarie Carlson, CTAUN chair, has worked tirelessly to plan and execute conferences that have addressed some of the most pressing problems facing the world’s children. Earlier conferences focused on the child soldier, literacy, poverty, and education as a human right. At each conference, speakers and panels provide attendees with information and personal stories to illustrate and explain the topic. Additionally, teacher resources and best practices are provided. These are all archived at www.ctaun.org. This year’s conference dealt with two issues facing us all: economic inequality and human trafficking. Bringing greetings from the U.N.,
Under-Secretary General for Communications and Public Information Peter Launsky-Tieffenthal announced the appointment of an Envoy on Youth, Ahmad Alhindawi of Jordan, to address the needs of the “largest generation of youth the world has ever known.” He continued by discussing how children develop social consciousness and the role educators must play. This is an area where school counselors can be leaders. Through our group work, individual sessions, and classroom presentations, we can share our concerns about equality, morality, and justice and model positive, caring behavior. He also pointed to the positive effect on children of real-life stories of courage and strong moral fiber and cited programs like the U.N.’s Holocaust Remembrance Program as an example (www. un.org/en/holocaustremembrance). The morning keynoter was Yale professor Thomas Pogge, who began with a PowerPoint presentation that showed growth in life expectancy over the past 250 years and the growth in income in the West. He shared some devastating statistics. For example, two billion people lack medicine and one billion lack
clean water, electricity, and other essentials. He continued by informing us that since the Cold War, one-third of all deaths were poverty-related from preventable diseases like measles, malaria, TB, and malnutrition. His talk was followed by a lively panel discussion on economic inequalities and topics ranging from climate change to “yoyo” (you’re on your own) economies. The morning closed with best practice awards, poster submissions, and announcement of a U.N. iPhone app followed. The focus for the afternoon was the second half of the social justice theme: human trafficking. Social Justice is an area where school counselors can really make an impact. Because we really are the only people in the school who see the whole child, we are situated to be the first to notice subtle changes that signal a child is in trouble. Economic inequality and human trafficking both occur in our communities, and it is up to us to work to find solutions and raise awareness. More information about the conferences, teacher resources, and best practices are all available on the CTAUN website. ■
MASCA Spring Conference 2013 Resort & Conference Center at Hyannis April 7 - April 8, 2013 Conference programs have been selected to help school counselors collaborate with partners in all domains. Among the exciting programs are: • Strengthening College and Career Readiness • Civic Involvement for School Counselors • Data Collection • Impact of the Virtual World • Massachusetts State College Admissions • Current Alcohol, Drug, and Violence Trends • STEM For more information about the conference, go to www.masca.org.
Social Justice and Human Trafficking By DONNA BROWN MASCA Executive Director
2012 – 2013 OFFICERS PRESIDENT JENNIFER LISK Medway High School, Medway, MA 02053 Tel. 508-533-3228 x 5107 • Fax 508-533-3246 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org PAST PRESIDENT MICHELLE BURKE Beverly High School 100 Sohier Road Beverly, MA 01915-2654 Tel. 978-921-6132 x 11107 E-mail: email@example.com PRESIDENT-ELECT THERESA A. COOGAN, Ph.D. Bridgewater State University Bridgewater, MA 02325 Tel. 508-531-2640 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org VICE PRESIDENT ELEMENTARY JACQUELINE BROWN East Somerville Community School 42 Prescott Street, Somerville, MA 02143 Tel. 617-625-6600 x 6517 • Fax 617-591-7906 E-mail: email@example.com VICE PRESIDENT MIDDLE / JUNIOR HIGH MARISA CASTELLO E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org KATHLEEN SCOTT E-mail: email@example.com VICE PRESIDENT SECONDARY CARRIE KULICK-CLARK Braintree High School 128 Town Street, Braintree, MA 02184 Tel. 781-848-4000 ext 2273 • Fax 781-848-7799 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org VICE PRESIDENT POSTSECONDARY JOHN MARCUS Dean College 99 Main Street, Franklin, MA 02038 Tel. 508-541-1509 • Fax 508-541-8726 E-mail: email@example.com VICE PRESIDENT ADMINISTRATORS TBA VICE PRESIDENT COUNSELOR EDUCATORS MEGAN KRELL, Ph.D. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org VICE PRESIDENT RETIREES Joseph D. FitzGerald, Ed.D. 5 Progress Street, Weymouth, MA 02188 Tel. 781-264-3426 E-mail: email@example.com EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR DONNA M. BROWN Adjunct Professor, UMass Boston P.O. Box 366, 779 Center Street Bryantville, MA 02327 Tel. 781-293-2835 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org TREASURER ASHLEY CARON 25 Belmont Ave., Stoughton, MA 02072 Tel. 508-212-0676 E-mail: email@example.com SECRETARY JENNIFER McGUIRE Upper Cape Cod Regional Technical School 220 Sandwich Road, Bourne, MA 02532 Tel. 508-759-7711 x 247 • Fax 508-759-5455 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org MEMBERSHIP COORDINATOR DEBORAH CLEMENCE P.O. Box 805, East Dennis, MA 02641 E-mail: email@example.com COUNSELOR’S NOTEBOOK EDITOR SALLY ANN CONNOLLY 19 Bayberry Road, Danvers, MA 01923 Tel. 978-774-8158 • Fax 978-750-8154 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
uring the afternoon session of the Annual CTAUN Conference, which was held at the United Nations in January, the second half of the social justice theme addressed the devastating problem of human trafficking. Piero Bonadeo, Deputy Representative of the U.N. Office on Drugs and Crime, said that 20.9 million victims are trafficked for labor and sex. Child victims have increased from 20-27% between 2007 and 2010, and 55-60% of the victims are women. Bonadeo was joined by Kerry Neal, Child Protection Specialist for UNICEF and Desiree M. Suo, Foreign Affairs Officer for the U.S. Department of State, Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. Neal said that many misunderstandings about human trafficking exist. Many people think only of trans-national sex trafficking, but human trafficking for labor is far more prevalent in some areas. He also pointed out that trafficking occurs within our own borders, and it is not always undertaken by organized criminal groups. No simple, single cause of child trafficking exists, he said. Everything from poverty to migration to war to natural disasters impact children, making them vulnerable to trafficking. UNICEF supports the efforts of many countries in developing safe-school environments, because educators are often the first to notice when a child is experiencing problems. For counselors, this is even more important because we have been trained to identify behavior changes that may signal problems. Suo gave historical background for her department’s involvement in trying to prevent human trafficking. By its very definition, she said, human trafficking is modern slavery. “Trafficking in Persons includes any victim, regardless of whether he or she gave their initial consent, participated in a crime as a direct result of being trafficked, were transported into the exploitative situation, or were simply born into a state of servitude.”
In the ensuing discussion, it became clear that victims of domestic violence who are controlled by fear fall under the definition. This revelation can have an impact on how counselors deal with their students. The afternoon keynoter was Rachel Lloyd, Founder and CEO of Girls Educational and Mentoring Services, which is this year celebrating its 15th anniversary. Energetic and passionate, Lloyd shared her own experiences as a sexually exploited teen in Germany. Her book,
Many factors make children vulnerable to human trafficking. Girls Like Us, details her extraordinary life and mission. Currently, Lloyd serves as an advocate for minors forced into prostitution. She seeks to change the way educators interact with girls who have been prostituted in our own communities. Her goal is to not only “rescue” these girls but to help them reclaim their lives by providing the necessary support. The closing session of the conference was a dialogue between concert pianist, Chloe Flower, and Somaly Mam, Founder of the Somaly Mam Foundation and author of The Road of Lost Innocence: The True Story of a Cambodian Heroine. The session began with an original piano composition by Flower, who has been working with the Mam Foundation since she spent a holiday in Cambodia some years ago. Mam reiterated that rescuing girls from the brothels is only the beginning. To be successful, the girls need education, training, and help developing confidence as well as long-term goals. She stressed the importance of education — specifically, music education — in waging war against human trafficking. And she emphasized that survivors can often be more helpful than social workers. For more information and resources, go to the website of the Committee on Teaching About the United Nations (CTAUN): www.ctaun.org. ■
ADVOCACY UPDATE College and Career Readiness By SHANNON DORAN MASCA Advocacy Committee Chair
he 2013-2014 Legislative Session has officially begun. Historically, Massachusetts Legislators review more bills per Legislative Session than those in any other state: up to 5,000! Fortunately, not all of these bills have to do with K-12 education and school counseling. To learn more about proposed mandates (i.e., bills) that could affect your career, schools, and the students you serve, click the Advocacy tab at the MASCA website, www.masca.org. The MASCA website is highlighting a couple of bills, which will hopefully sound familiar to you, even though they have been assigned different bill numbers for the 2013-2014 Legislative Session: • HD2990 – An act establishing sixyear career plans for all Massachusetts public school students • HD3015 – An act establishing a school counseling leadership pilot pro-
gram to accelerate college and career readiness in Massachusetts public schools On average, bills which have become law take two-three legislative sessions to arrive at the Governor’s desk before the end of the legislative session. The 2013-2014 Legislative Session is the third time that these bills (under different numbers) have been submitted for consideration at the State House. They were first introduced for the 2009-2010 Legislative Session by MASCA under the leadership of Bob Bardwell and Katie Gray. Currently, these bills are being sponsored by Representative Alice Peisch. This is fortunate because Representative Peisch is Chair of the Joint Committee on Education. This bi-partisan committee is the first legislative body to decide if HD2990 and HD3015 “ought to pass” and, therefore, continue to the next stage of the legislative process. Since
these bills have been approved by this Committee in the past, there is good reason to believe that they will receive a positive recommendation once again. Additionally, there have been many developments, both statewide and nationally, which suggest that the conditions are ripe for these bills to become law by the end of 2014. Here are a few examples, which suggest that Massachusetts is ready to commit more resources in support of the college and career readiness of our students: • Massachusetts, under the leadership of the Executive Office on Education, joined the “Pathways to Prosperity Network to help advance the Administration’s efforts to create clear career pathways for students and adult learners that will equip the Commonwealth’s workforce for success in a 21st century global economy.” (www.mass.gov/edu, June 2012) • “The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education’s task force on Integrating College and Career Readiness (ICCR) is recommending the creation of a comprehensive statewide system comprised of structured, aligned, and strategic partnerships to support students’ ‘fluid movement’ through elementary, secondary, and higher education into successful careers.” (www.doe.mass.edu/ news, June 2012) • “The Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) created a new office — the Office of College and Career Readiness—and developed a strategy to increase College and Career Readiness among Massachusetts students.” (www.doe.mass.edu/ccr, November 2012) For a list of career and college readiness developments, research, updates and links, click on the Advocacy tab at the MASCA website. ■
For information about pending legislation, go to Advocacy section, www.masca.org/
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MASCA Bylaws Revision
MASCA Spring RTTT Workshop
By JENNIFER LISK MASCA President
Resort & Conference Center at Hyannis Tuesday, April 9, 2013 For details, go to www.masca.org.
he bylaws that govern MASCA are critical in outlining the purposes of the organization as well as how the business of the organization is conducted. The bylaws are reviewed periodically and proposed changes must be approved by the Governing Board and the general membership. The following changes were approved by the Governing Board at the January 24, 2013 meeting and will be voted on at the general membership meeting at the Spring Conference in April. The proposed changes are followed by the rationale for the change. The full text of the bylaws can be found on MASCA’s website. • In Article II, delete the last bullet, To provide financial assistance to students at all levels — elementary, middle/ junior high, high school, postsecondary, and graduate level — through scholarships, campership, and other appropriate forms of aid. In recent years, the financial support for scholarships and camperships has been cut from the budget due to the financial constraints of our organization. While the goal of supporting students at all levels remains a valuable one, it has become not a primary purpose of the organization, but rather a practice that should be maintained when possible. As this section outlines the purposes of the organization, it is more appropriately reflected in the Policies and Procedures Manual than the bylaw. • In Article III, Section 1, delete the last paragraph, Professional Members shall be required to provide the Association with their certificate numbers at the time of membership renewal to qualify for
this category of membership. This has not been a practice that has been followed for several years. • In Article III, Section 2, delete and recommended for membership by a school official. Student membership should be open to students who meet the criteria and the recommendation is not necessary. • In Article III, add Section 10, The Membership Coordinator and/or Executive Director may request proof of eligibility for any of the membership categories. After deleting the requirement for certificate numbers for Professional membership and recommendation for Student membership, there should be a mechanism for verifying eligibility for a membership category if a question of eligibility should arise. • In Article V, Section 7, fourth bullet, delete Ballots shall be mailed to each member via the Counselor’s Notebook. Ballots may be returned via mail or voting may take place at the spring conference. Replace with Ballots shall be distributed to all members via mail or electronic means. It is common practice to use electronic means for distribution of information and voting by ASCA, and both means are used for many other professional practices. • In Article X, Section 2, second line, delete Strategic Planning. It has been suggested by past MASCA leaders that the Strategic Planning chair position should be in place for more than one year to promote consistency and longterm planning within the organization. • In Article X, Section 3, delete four weeks prior to the first day of the annual conference and replace with two weeks before the Leadership Development Institute. This change allows the committee chairs to complete the fiscal year and discuss the full year in preparation for planning for the next year, which happens at LDI each summer. • In Article XVII, Section 1, after President-Elect add and/or Executive Director as of July 1st of the coming fiscal year. The Delegate Assembly includes programming for the Executive Directors of state organizations. As the Executive Director position is typically consistent for several years and the Executive Director has attended in recent years, this change will better reflect best practice. MARCH 2013
In 2012, ASCA changed the structure of the Leadership Development Institute and Delegate Assembly to combine what were formerly two separate events into one that occurs before the ASCA conference. As the ASCA conference typically occurs at the end of June, past practice was for the outgoing Past President to attend the Delegate Assembly and the incoming President-Elect would attend the Leadership Development Institute in July. Now that the events are combined, it is more beneficial to MASCA for the incoming
President-Elect to attend the combined event as the content is geared towards planning for the future of the organization. • Replace Department of Education with Department of Elementary and Secondary Education wherever the title appears in the bylaws. The Department changed its official name since the last bylaw review. • Replace Executive Committee with Executive Council wherever it appears. This will accurately reflect the appropriate title in places there are errors. ■
The Common Core Standards: A Primer By THERESA A. COOGAN, Ph.D., MASCA President-Elect
he last few years in education have been exciting with the Race To The Top federal grant and related conversations. One of the areas that school counselors must also be knowledgeable about is related to the Common Core Standards. Most of the conversations around this topic area are focused on teachers; however, this should not be overlooked by counselors. The following briefly summarizes the Common Core Standards and provides some resources for school counselors to use. A major focus at the primary and secondary levels affecting all states is the Common Core Standards. These standards focus specifically on math and English language arts content areas. They are designed to be implemented across the K-12 grade levels in all states. The Common Core State Standards “are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers”
(www.corestandards.org). The website continues to differentiate these core standards from previous state standards, which were unique to every state in the country: “The Common Core State Standards enable collaboration between states on a range of tools and policies, including: (a) the development of textbooks, digital media, and other teaching materials aligned to the standards; (b) the development and implementation of common comprehensive assessment systems to measure student performance annually that will replace existing state testing systems; and (c) changes needed to help support educators and schools in teaching to the new standards.” The Common Core connects with our efforts around College and Career Readiness as a part of the Massachusetts Race To The Top application. The Standards were adopted in Massachusetts on July 21, 2010, with a projected full implementation by the 2013-
2014 academic year. Recent data from the Common Core Standards website shows that forty-five states, the District of Columbia, four territories, and the Department of Defense Education Activity have adopted the Common Core State Standards. More information about the Common Core Standards as they pertain specifically to our goals in Massachusetts can be found at http://www.doe.mass.edu/ candi/commoncore. The standards establish what students need to learn, but they do not dictate how teachers should teach. Therefore, there will likely be some variability among how buildings and districts are addressing the Common Core Standards. The Common Core website explains that states who have adopted the Common Core State Standards are currently collaborating to develop common assessments that will be aligned to the standards and replace existing end of year state assessments. These assessments are anticipated to be available in the 2014-2015 school year. Two consortia of states are developing common assessments: the Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Career (PARCC) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC). These state-led consortia on assessment are grounded in the following principles: • Allow for comparison across students, schools, districts, states and nations; • Create economies of scale; • Provide information and support more effective teaching and learning; and • Prepare students for college and careers. Massachusetts is adopting the PARCC and more information is available on the DESE website. The model content frameworks that were updated in the fall of 2012 are available in Mathematics and English / Language Arts / Literacy. Go to http://www.parcconline.org/parcc-modelcontent-frameworks. You can download a free app for Android users at https://play.google.com/ store/apps/details?id=com.masteryconnect .CommonCore&hl=en/ and for iPhone users at https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ common-core-standards/id439424555. ■ COUNSELOR’S NOTEBOOK
THE INTERN’S TALE Taking Your Own Advice By JILLIAN M. FAGAN Master’s Student in School Counseling, Bridgewater State University
here is a school for everyone.” This is a common phrase heard in the halls and counseling offices at my internship site. The school counselors work with students to assist them in creating their plans after graduation. We begin to tell students when they are ninth graders that they will leave school with some sort of plan. They can be centered on postsecondary training for technical or vocational trades, 2-year or 4-year higher education, a branch of the service, or anything else. I believe that there is a school for everyone, but how is it possible to know all of them? For the college search process at my internship site, students and counselors use the career planning program Naviance. We examine the numbers and graphs of the secondary institutions that the students are interested in and talk about the school itself. We then encourage them to visit the institutions that interest them. It is one thing for us, as counselors, to talk numbers about a school and relay information based upon what we have heard. Visiting a secondary institution gives you a feel for its true atmosphere. Is there a lot of activity on campus? Does the institution offer a lot of individualized attention or one in the crowd? What is the school near? Would any of my students be a good fit here? You can find answers to these questions and meet with admission counselors to find out what the numbers are and if certain students have a chance of getting in. Recently, I attended the New Hampshire College and University Council Guidance Counselor Tour Program. Thirtyfour counselors toured eleven institutions in New Hampshire over the course of five days. I had heard about most of the college and universities before; however, I had a completely different opinion of them once I actually went on campus. I experienced the atmosphere of the institutions and could picture certain types of students attending them. We learned about admissions processes, what admissions counselors focus on in the application package, different clubs and organizations, internship and study MARCH 2013
abroad opportunities, residential living and eatery options for students, just to name a few areas. The information that I gathered that week will assist me throughout my career. My advice to other interns: Go out and visit colleges, universities, and other
postsecondary training programs. The information you gain first-hand is far better than the information gathered online, even in the digital age. Visiting institutions is a fun way to gather information and help students throughout your career. And who knows, you might get a free T-shirt. ■
MASCA Awards 2012-2013 The MASCA Awards and Publicity Committee encourages you to nominate a deserving colleague for a prestigious MASCA Award. Please complete the nomination form and send it to Michelle Burke, MASCA Past President. The committee will review and contact your nominee. Awards will be presented at the MASCA 2013 Spring Conference in Hyannis.
MASCA Counselor of the Year A current MASCA member and a licensed counselor serving during the current school year in an elementary, secondary, or postsecondary school or in a local or regional school system and who has made outstanding contributions to his/her school. The recipient will have excellent rapport with pupils, parents, and school personnel and is a highly respected counselor of students. MASCA Administrator of the Year An administrator who has made an outstanding and significant contribution to the guidance and counseling movement, developed and/or implemented an innovative program or initiated improvements of school counseling services in his/her area of responsibility.
MASCA Leadership Award A current MASCA member and licensed counselor serving during the current school year in an elementary, secondary, or postsecondary school or in a local or regional school system and who demonstrates able leadership in the counseling profession at the local, state, or national level. MASCA Torch Award Rising Star An individual who has entered the school counseling profession within the last five years. The award winner is a model for new counselors, demonstrating the highest standards of professional competence, outstanding contributions to the school community and/or profession, and excellent rapport with students, parents, and school personnel.
MASCA Torch Award Retiring Counselor A counselor who is retiring in the current year or has retired within the last five years. This counselor has served as a model for new counselors, demonstrated the highest standards of professional competence and excellent rapport with students, parents, and school personnel and has made outstanding contributions to the school community and/or profession. The George Thompson Memorial Scholarship Award A $1,000 scholarship award named in honor of George Thompson, a longtime friend and contributor to MASCA. This award winner is a school counseling graduate student who demonstrates exceptional promise for leadership and contribution to our profession. Nominations from Counselor Educators are encouraged.
MASCA Awards Nomination Form 2012-2013 Nominator Name: ______________________________________________________________________________________________ School/Organization: ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Mailing Address: _______________________________________________________________________________________________ City, State, Zip: __________________________________________________________________________________________________ Phone: ____________________________________________ E-mail: _____________________________________________________ Award Nominee: _______________________________________________________________________________________________ School/Organization: ____________________________________________________________________________________________ Mailing Address: _______________________________________________________________________________________________ City, State, Zip: __________________________________________________________________________________________________ Phone: ____________________________________________ E-mail: _____________________________________________________ MASCA Award: ________________________________________________________________________________________________ Please include a statement about why your nominee deserves to be selected for this MASCA Award. Submit nominations to Michelle M. Burke, MASCA Past President. Nominations can be e-mailed to email@example.com, faxed to 978-921-8537, or mailed to: Michelle Burke, 56 Mudnock Road, Salisbury, MA 01952 E-mail nominations are encouraged.
The deadline for submitting nominations is March 15. MARCH 2013
ADVOCACY IN ACTION In order to make a difference on the legislative / policy level, we simply need to communicate and educate stakeholders (including policy makers) about what we do best. 1. “BE THE BUZZ.” Spread the word in whatever way you can: initiate discussions, submit information or related articles to school or professional newsletters, and feature information and links on websites. Invite others to contact the Joint Committee on Education and the House Representative for the voting district they live and/or work in. 2. CONTACT JOINT COMMITTEE ON EDUCATION MEMBERS. If the House Representative or Senator for the voting district you live or work in is a member of the Joint Committee on Education, please make an extra effort to call these bills to their attention. Additionally, consider educating them about your role, offer examples of how this will make a
difference in district schools, and/or offer yourself as a resource. 3. CONTACT YOUR DISTRICT HOUSE REPRESENTATIVE. This is a good time to start contacting your district House Representative. Introduce yourself, find out about the education issues they are passionate about, find out what they know about school counseling, tell them about your work, and make sure they are familiar with HD2990 and HD3015. For a guide on how to make contact, visit the Advocacy page at the MASCA website, www.masca.org. 4. COLLABORATE WITH THE MASCA ADVOCACY COMMITTEE. Forward relevant information, report on steps you have taken, share research and real-life examples of what we are advocating for, submit press releases, bring news to your affiliate, volunteer at advocacy events, and/or join the Committee. ■
Volunteer Opportunity A subcommittee is forming to coordinate MASCA membership advocacy for H2990 (An act establishing six-year career plans for all Massachusetts public school students) and HD3015 (An act establishing a school counseling leadership pilot program to accelerate college and career readiness in Massachusetts public schools). The goal is to include at least one graduate student, two professional school counselors, and a retiree. Additional mem-
Art Athletic Training Biology Business Management Chemistry Communication Computer Information Systems Compute Science Criminal Justice Economics Education English Environmental Science Ethnic and Gender Studies General Science History Liberal Studies Mathematics Movement Science Music Nursing Political Science Psychology Regional Planning Social Work Sociology Spanish Theatre Arts
bers are welcome. We want to create a valuable and rewarding collaborative experience, which will be both do-able and satisfying for those involved. The Advocacy Committee Chair will orient subcommittee members to the advocacy process, identify resources, participate in setting strategic goals, and support forward movement. To join, contact Shannon Doran at firstname.lastname@example.org. The 2013-2014 Legislative Session has begun! ■
Discover more by visiting us online at westfield.ma.edu. Westfield State University Office of Admission Post Office Box 1630 · Westfield, MA 01086 (413) 572-5218 · westfield.ma.edu COUNSELOR’S NOTEBOOK
Continuing Education Opportunities By Joe FitzGerald, Ed.D., MASCA VP Retirees
he Osher Lifelong Learning Institute grew out of the Bernard Osher Foundation, which provided scholarships for students planning to further their education. On its website, the Institute is described in the following way:
In the fall of 2000, the Foundation began to consider programs targeted toward more mature students, not necessarily well served by the standard continuing education curriculum. Courses in such programs attract students of all ages eager to accumulate units to complete degrees or to acquire career skills. By contrast, the interest of older adults, many of whom are at retirement age, is in learning for the joy of learning — without examinations or grades. The Foundation was fortunate to have two immediate examples of lifelong learning programs from which to learn. One was the Fromm Institute of Lifelong Learning at the University of San Francisco; the second was Senior College at the University of Southern Maine. In early 2001, an endowment grant was given to the University of Southern Maine to improve and extend its excellent programs, and the name “Senior College” was changed to “Osher Lifelong Learning Institute.” Shortly after, Sonoma State University, a member of the California State University (CSU) system became a grantee. Both programs progressed admirably, and the Foundation decided to join the “lifelong learning” field in a significant fashion.
JOE FITZGERALD older; university connection and university support; robust volunteer leadership and sound organizational structure; and a diverse repertoire of intellectually stimulating courses.” In Massachusetts there are four OLLI programs, at Berkshire Community College, Brandeis University, Tufts University, and UMass Boston. The programs vary, but all of them meet the needs of older adults and retirees. The membership fee ranges from $50
to $690, according to the courses and programs offered. For example, a fee of $175 at UMass covers membership and any courses a participant can schedule for that term. At Brandeis, the $690 fee covers two courses per term in addition to lectures and other benefits. When one looks at the cost of higher education, the OLLI program is a real bargain. The courses, workshops, lectures, trips, etc., cover a wide range including literature, art, music, and technology. Although the programs vary, most take advantage of the campus facility where they are housed. I urge you to take a close look at these wonderful programs: • Berkshire Community College, http://www.berkshireolli.org • Brandeis University, http://www. brandeis.edu/bolli • Tufts University, http://ase.tufts. edu/lli • UMass Boston, http://www.olli. umb.edu ■
In 2003, OLLI expanded nationally, and today it has approximately 125 lifelong learning programs on university and college campuses across the country, at least one in each state and the District of Columbia. The Foundation also supports a National Resource Center for the Institutes, located at the University of Southern Maine. There is considerable variation among the Osher Institutes, but the common threads remain: non-credit educational programs specifically developed for seasoned adults who are aged 50 and MARCH 2013
FOCUS ON HEALTH AND PERFORMANCE Energy drinks pose risk “A new report warns that popular energy drinks such as Red Bull and Rockstar pose potential hazards to teens, especially when mixed with alcohol. The report, published in the February issue of the journal Pediatrics in Review, summarizes existing research and concludes that the caffeine-laden beverages can cause rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, obesity and other medical problems in teens. Combined with alcohol, the potential harms can be severe, the authors noted.” — Randy Dotinga, “Energy Drinks Pose Risks to Teens, Study Finds,” HealthDay News, Accessed on February 1, 2013.
Soda linked to depression “A brand new study makes a connection between sweetened drinks, especially diet beverages, and depression. The data comes from a large study done by The National Institutes of Health. Near-
ly 264,000 adults 50 years and older participated. Consumption of a variety of drinks including soda, fruit punch, tea and coffee was tracked from 1995 to 1996. Some 10 years later, researchers asked the participants whether they had been diagnosed with depression since the year 2000. A total of 11,311 had been. Those who drank more than four sodas a day were 30 percent more likely to develop depression than those who drank no soda. Four cans of fruit punch a day upped that number to 38%. Digging deeper, the risk was even greater for people who drank diet soda, diet fruit punch and diet iced tea — all containing artificial sweeteners. On the other hand, people who drank four cups of unsweetened coffee a day were about 10 percent less likely to be depressed.” — “Diet Soda and Depression?” http://www. nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/videos/news/Diet_Soda_ 010913-1.htmlm, Accessed on January 10, 2013.
Schools reach out to stressed teens “Overall, a recent national survey of adolescent mental health found that about 8 to 10 percent of students ages 13 to 18 have an anxiety disorder. And of those teens, only 18 percent received mental health care, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.” In response, schools nationwide are implementing stress-reducing measures, such as yoga and break time, to alleviate the emotional pressure on students. — Martha Irvine, “Schools work to relieve teens’ stress,” AP, Boston Sunday Globe, February 3, 2013, A11.
Obesity reflects performance “Children who grow up obese have more to contend with than a greater risk of health problems such as asthma and diabetes. A new study has found they will struggle more in the classroom as well. Researchers from three U.S universities found youngsters who were overweight from the ages of three to nine performed worse on a math test than their slim peers. The findings add to a growing body of research that suggests obesity is associated with poorer academic performance and therefore long-term career prospects.” — http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article2159712/Obese-children-struggle-maths-lessonsfeel-lonely.html?ITO=1490, Accessed on 6/15/2012.
Level of education matters “While it’s known that education leads to better jobs and higher income, research also shows strong links between education and longevity, reduced risk of illness, and increased vitality and school success for future generations. Yet, changing demographic trends and rising college costs portend poorly for health. This brief [Why Does Education Matter So Much to Health?] examines the role that education plays in health and finds that: • Better-educated individuals live longer, healthier lives than those with less education, and their children are more likely to thrive; . . .” — Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, http:// www.rwjf.org/en/research-publications/findrwjf-research/2012/12/why-does-education-matterso-much-to-health-.html?cid=xtw_rwjf_040p, Accessed on December 29, 2012. ■
Massachusetts School Counselors Association, Inc. COUNSELOR’S NOTEBOOK Sally Ann Connolly, Editor
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23rd Annual Professional Day for Guidance Counselors and Administrators Sponsored by The Guidance Administrators Forum, an affiliate of MASCA
Friday, March 8, 2013 • Regis College, Weston • 8:30 am – 1:30 pm
MASCA 2013 Spring Conference Improving the Utilization of School Counselors Through Partnerships Resort and Conference Center at Hyannis April 7-8, 2013 April 7 • Keynoter Mandy Savitz-Romer, Ph.D., Lecturer on Education and Director of Prevention Science and Practice, Harvard Graduate School of Education • Graduate student programming and poster sessions • Welcome reception and concurrent workshops
April 8 • Jill Cook, ASCA Assistant Director, Extended session on new 3.0 ASCA Model • Full day of concurrent workshops
April 9 • Spring RTTT workshop
For details, go to MASCA’s website, www.masca.org/