NW new staff full interview with Connor Davis, the college advisor
What does your position entail?
My position is about helping students decide what their path is, after their time here at Shawnee Mission Northwest. While my title is college adviser, we can talk about all different types of schooling, as well as the workforce, military and maybe a gap year of some sort.
What does a day in your life look like?
I would say getting here early in the morning about 7-7:20 a.m. And then lots of emails, that’s a great thing to do. Usually I have students scheduling meetings with me, or I pull students, as well, to come talk about college. My goal is to try to get to speak and meet everyone. Then, planning events as well for how to best help students in their college application process.
What do those events usually look like?
So I’m actually getting to discover now what they’re going to look like. They’re usually very student based, trying to make them during school hours. So we actually have one coming up about FAFSA, so to make FSA ID’s for all seniors to attend. A lot of college application workshops, usually regional specific, so and Johnson County Then just other things to help celebrate students and make this process go as smoothly as possible.
What inspired you to go into this position?
I think I’m really passionate about education equity. Also reaffirming and validating all student needs and wants, and that those routes look differently for everyone. So I think that has really helped me grow in my passion and just making sure that everyone gets some type of opportunity that they’re looking for.
What makes Northwest stand out from other schools?
I’ve appreciated how welcoming and supportive it is. As a staff and with students, it’s very supportive and really emphasizes collaboration. It’s a real team environment, even though that sounds like kind of a cliché. very student centered, ‘What do the students need?’ It’s all about you guys and I really appreciate that.
Highlight of the year so far?
Honestly, the day to day student meetings. That means a lot to me. That fills my cup. That’s where I get my energy from. Just getting to know you guys and what it is that you’re wanting to pursue.
What are you most looking forward to this year?
I would say Decision Day, so when students announce where it is that they do plan to go or what their plans are after Shawnee Mission Northwest. I think that’s really exciting. It’s cool to close a chapter and open a new one.
What are your goals for the year?
My goals are to meet with, it’s very technical, but 85-90% of the students. With my role, I do keep track of all the students that I meet with in the senior class. Just making sure that everyone knows who I am, but also that they can approach me with any of their questions. Like I said before, with my title as college adviser, I feel like that might steer some people away, but just knowing that we can talk about anything. As long as they know that and feel comfortable when they have those questions to approach me, that’ll be one of my main goals.
How can students contact you?
Okay, so students can contact me through my email, email@example.com. I have an Instagram account called @SMNW_ advise… Mallory Martin had . So if anyone was following that one prior to, I now hold that account… I list a lot of updates like events coming up or scholarship opportunities or deadlines. Monthly checklists are a big one that people will appreciate. They can direct message me on there if they need to. Also scheduling an appointment through Lisa Jones in the front office.
What is one thing you would say to the NW student body?
Don’t hesitate to ask questions, be curious. No path looks the same and they’re deserving of their own path, and I’m willing to help them find their way on it.
Where have you worked before this?
So I actually went from my undergraduate bachelor’s degree straight into my master’s program. So I worked for K-State athletics as a graduate assistant academic counselor. I worked with women’s soccer, baseball, women’s golf and men’s and women’s track and field. So similar to this role, but less of the transition from high school to college. It’s more just like advising while in college. I was a public speaking teacher for a year.
Do you have anything else to add?
Don’t wait around forever to get started on this. There’s always something that people could for sure be working on. They do have a support team here. They have awesome resources in their counselors… They definitely have a support system in whatever it is that they’re wanting to pursue.