College Counselor (SY 20-21)

  • Rochester, NY, USA
  • Full-time
  • Hiring Start Time: Immediate Start (SY 20-21)

Company Description

Uncommon Schools is a non-profit network of 53 outstanding public charter schools in grades K-12 across New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts. Our mission is to start and manage outstanding urban public charter schools that close the achievement gap and prepare students from low-income backgrounds for success in college and beyond. We are accomplishing that mission every day, with a college graduation rate that is well above the national average and thousands of stories of our students and alumni achieving their dreams.

Job Description

The College Counselor  is responsible for the matriculation of every student into a four year university/college. The College Counselor will promote the mission of Uncommon Schools with a college counseling program that will develop student knowledge, skills, and character. It is the ultimate goal of the college counseling department through guidance and education, to ensure that all graduates enter, succeed at, and graduate from a 4-year college.

The College Counselor will ensure proper college matches for students regarding school community, size, location, student to faculty ratio, academic interests, financial aid, and extracurricular interests. It is important to research student support systems - both academic and social - and verify they match student needs.

  • Believe in the mission:
    • Demonstrate relentless drive to improve the characters & lives of students in and out of school;
    • Show unwavering commitment to urban youth; and
    • Exhibit resilience to persevere and turn challenges into opportunities.
  • Lead for excellence:
    • Lead each student to the successful placement in four-year colleges;
    • Focus constantly on student achievement. Think critically and strategically in order to place students in the most advantageous position possible when applying to college; and
    • Consistently evaluate progress, using data to drive improvements in the college counseling process.
  • Take initiative:
    • Create a college-readiness culture for students and families, building opportunities for students to be emotionally and socially prepared for college life and
    • Develop and maintain strong relationships with college admissions officers and the individuals responsible for college recruitment and acceptance at each campus.

Goals & Responsibilities (including but not limited to):

  • Starting in 11th grade, guide students through the college applications process with the goal of helping students to identify and pursue the most appropriate post-secondary pathway.
  • Teach 11th and 12th grade college seminar courses (approximately 80 students total)
    • Teach students to successfully navigate all aspects of the college applications process and all things related including, but not limited, to:
      • Choosing an appropriate list of colleges to apply to
      • Personal statement and other required essays
      • Resumes
      • Recommendations
      • Financial aid
      • Scholarships
    • Continue to refine existing curriculum to create top-notch college placement course
  • Create a college-readiness culture for Uncommon students, helping 9th-11th graders grow in their knowledge of college and their readiness for the undergraduate experience in all areas.
  • Plan grade specific events for parents to address specific needs of each academic year
    • Be available for Report Card Nights to meet with parents about their students’ college process
    • Lead parent workshops at each grade level
  • Build and maintain relationships with college admissions offices
    • Attend state-wide and national conferences
    • Field calls from admission counselors needing information about individual students (fax or mail information needed)
    • Host college visits and ensure academic match of students who attend info sessions
    • When necessary, advocate relentlessly on behalf of student(s) with college officials to assist with admissions process, financial aid process, and any other obstacles that may arise.
  • Plan and lead college visits for each grade level
  • Vet and send transcripts to colleges via CommonApp, and to other programs and agencies upon request
  • Complete all clerical tasks associated with above responsibilities (filing, copying, data entry, etc.)


  • Belief and alignment with Uncommon’s core beliefs and educational philosophy.
  • Excellent communication skills, both verbal and written, and strong interpersonal skills with students, parents, colleagues, and community members.
  • Understanding of the nuances of urban school environments and school culture.
  • Prior experience working with high school students and families and/or college admissions field.
  • Strong working knowledge in all Microsoft Office programs (Word, Excel, Powerpoint, and Outlook), Naviance, and PowerSchool.
  • Bachelor’s degree is required; Master’s degree preferred.
  • Minimum of two years experience in an urban district or charter school setting.


  • Ability to work with faculty, families, students, and corporate leaders.
  • Be analytical and possess strong communication skills.
  • Comfortable with supervising and managing.
  • Strong attention to detail.
  • Fast learner with the ability to inquire and be open to feedback.
  • Ability to work in fast paced environment that is deadline driven.
  • Fluency in Spanish is preferred, but not required.

Additional Information

Uncommon Schools offers competitive salaries commensurate with experience and a comprehensive benefits package.  Aside from extensive professional development, all our staff members are equipped with a laptop computer, email, and all necessary supplies.

Uncommon believes in the importance of being a diverse, equitable and inclusive organization that enables our students and staff to thrive. We are committed to building a talented team that reflects the diverse backgrounds and experiences of our students. At the same time, we work to ensure an inclusive community through creating a space for important dialogue about issues of race and identity for our staff and students.  As an equal opportunity employer, we hire without consideration to race, religion, creed, color, national origin, age, gender, sexual orientation, marital status, veteran status or disability.

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