The process for applying to colleges is intimidating for anyone. The requirements of standardized tests, essays, recommendation letters and more can be a daunting task for a teenager — but college counselors are here to help. 

Susan Metzler, a college and career coordinator at Arcadia High School, chose her career path because of her interest in how students make their choice on a college when there are more than 5,300 options. 

“I find great satisfaction in working with students and being able to help them,” Metzler said. 

In Metzler’s three years at Arcadia, her schedule has never been dull with different responsibilities depending on the time of year. Her busiest time of the year is in the fall, when the seniors scramble to get applications submitted. In the spring, she helps students decide on scholarships and helps plan an awards ceremony for the graduating students. 

Metzler is thrilled to have the opportunity to work with a group of hard-working students within the diverse community of Arcadia High School. 

“I am always amazed with how many great kids are out there,” Metzler said. “In society people think all teenagers are eating Tide Pods and being lazy, but that could not be farther from the truth.” 

The best way to utilize a college counselor is to determine a college that fits a student’s wants and needs. Metzler recalls many cases when she meets with a student who is choosing a college based on the football team, even if it may not be a perfect fit for their specific needs.  

“Kids don’t put a lot of thought in where they want to go to college,” Metzler said. “They should be spending a lot of time thinking about it and making sure that their decision is right for them and their family.”

Given skyrocketing tuition costs these days, having access to a counselor  helps students — and parents — find a school that fits their child’s needs academically, socially and financially.   

Although the application process can place an immense amount of stress on these young adults, Metzler hopes the effort rewards them with a top-notch education at a place that will feel like home.  

“I hope they are happy,” Metzler said. “I want everything to work out perfectly for them.”