College counselors have helped high school students find their way to college, sparking the college dreams of many generations. As part of Saint Ignatius High School’s Women’s History Month celebration, we are excited to feature our first Wildcat Woman of the Week, Mrs. Jennifer Holz of the College Counseling Department.
Jennifer Holz works closely with students and their parents/guardians throughout the college admission process, beginning in the first semester of junior year and throughout senior year. She assists with college research, applications, essays, major and career exploration, as well as financial aid and scholarships. Just as every young man is an individual, she tailors her process to help each student decide where he will be academically challenged, comfortable and successful. “I love building relationships with students for two - four years and see them grow, mature and make plans for their futures.”
“Counseling is interesting because there is always something new to learn. The field has changed significantly over the course of my career, so it has really kept me on my toes.” Holz explained how she has seen the need for a greater focus on the psychological tumult that comes with applying to college. She believes this holistic approach is necessary throughout this vulnerable phase of students’ lives.
“Students often question their self-worth through the college process, so it brings up feelings and beliefs of not being ‘good enough.’ I would love to get to a place where every student knows their value, knows their worth, appreciates their talents and everything they have to offer to the world.” Jennifer and her fellow colleagues in the College Counseling Department make it their goal to not only offer the best information and resources, but also offer emotional guidance to help students work through the complex struggles they face before and after receiving their acceptance letters.
Holz is currently in her 17th year of counseling high school students. She began her career as a school counselor in 2003 at Saint Ignatius, where she worked for nine years before taking her talents to Padua Franciscan High School. Holz worked at Padua for five years until she made the decision to return to Ignatius as a college counselor.
She attributes many elements of her personal and professional growth to her 12 years working at Ignatius. “Being a part of this community is such a blessing. I could name so many individuals that I look up to as role models and mentors that have helped me become not just a better counselor, but a better human being. I love the fact that this school focuses not just on professional development, becoming better at our craft or our subject area, but on our spiritual formation as well. My faith life has had its hills and valleys, and I appreciate the fact that we are not just allowed to explore that aspect of our life here, but it is encouraged.”
Learn more about College Counseling at Saint Ignatius: https://www.ignatius.edu/academics/college-counseling