Why School Counselor Training?

One of MCAN's strategic priorities is to provide professional development opportunities to those who work directly with students and families in the college-going process — especially school counselors. We believe school counselors are poised to lead the charge in ensuring students are socially, academically, logistically, and financially prepared for postsecondary education. Counselors are uniquely positioned to change the postsecondary trajectories for all students. However, in order for them to effectively lead the college access movement in their buildings, they must be formally trained as college advisers, postsecondary planners, and education advocates.

Thanks to generous support from The Kresge Foundation, MCAN has offered a training course for school counselors since 2013-14. To date, more than 800 Michigan school counselors have participated in the course.

Course Description:  Foundations of Equity in College and Career Counseling

The 2021 Foundations of Equity in College and Career Counseling course will run Jan. 21 – May 6. The 18-week, virtual course will require five online meetings, each of which take place monthly. 

The Foundations of Equity in College and Career Counseling course is designed for school counselors, college and career advisors, and educators. In this course, you’ll build upon your knowledge of equity-centered counseling and advising practices in your efforts to support student postsecondary exploration, planning, enrollment, and persistence. You’ll explore the fundamentals of college and career advising while also considering the available school and community-based systems, policies, and practices that contribute to equitable postsecondary attainment. The course will also look at how social emotional learning (SEL) and virtual advising influence postsecondary outcomes. You’ll enhance your skills in supporting students who reside in low-income households, are first in their family to attend college, live with disabilities, and are from underserved populations.

MCAN and San Diego State University are co-hosting the training, which will be facilitated by Laura Owen, Ph.D., school counselor educator and director of the Center for Equity and Postsecondary Attainment at San Diego State University.

Registration and Course Cost

Registration for the Fall 2021 section of this course will open during the summer of 2021. The course is open to all school counselors, college and career advisers, and educators. However, a limited number of seats are available and priority consideration will be granted to school counselors and individuals who have not previously enrolled.  Remaining seats will be filled on a first-come, first-served basis. Additional names will be placed on a waiting list. Participants will receive a $250 scholarship to complete the course at no cost.

State Continuing Education Clock Hours (SCECHs)

For the 2021 course, we anticipate 30 SCECHs will be awarded to individuals who complete the entire course, including participation in all virtual sessions. Of those 30 hours, 15 fall under the college preparation and selection category, and 15 will fall under the career exploration category.  Reduced SCECHs for partial completion will not be awarded.


Questions should be directed to Autumn Kearney, strategy manager for high school innovation.