Susan Langan - Advocacy Chair
It is truly an exciting time to be a school counselor! I am very privileged to be the chair of the ISCA Advocacy Committee this year.
Previously, this committee was called Government Relations. While researching other state school counseling association websites, most of them had changed the name of their committee to "Advocacy". The role of this committee has evolved to more than government relations and is a critical component of our association and all school counseling programs.
Advocacy is one of the four ASCA National Model Themes of a comprehensive school counseling program, along with Leadership, Collaboration and Systemic Change. It is critical that ALL Iowa School Counselors have the tools to advocate for their school counseling programs. We all need to step up and be champions for our students but also for our programs. If we do not define our role as a school counselor, someone else will. Unfortunately, there are many misconceptions about what school counselors should be doing and advocating for school counselors can be a challenge. We have a lot of work to do but our committee is committed and passionate and we have a lot of exciting things going on in our state. If you would like to join the Advocacy committee, please let me know.
I would especially like to invite all school counselors to attend the Visit the Hill Day in February. Please see more information under the Advocacy tab of this website. While this may seem intimidating, it is a wonderful learning experience and opportunity for us to share our stories with state legislators. We especially need elementary school counselors to attend this day so your voices can be heard.
My experience in education has been as a special education teacher for 7 years and as a school counselor for 24 years. I have always understood the importance of advocacy for school counselors, but realized the urgency to step it up after serving on the ISCA board as Secondary VP, President-Elect, President and Past- President. Being able to represent Iowa at the National American School Counselor Association conferences has given me a stronger perspective in what we need to do to help our profession be bold and fearless so that all of our programs can be effective in helping our students.
I am entering my 21st year as a professional school counselor at Cedar Falls High School. I also have had experience in the elementary and middle school levels. We have been fortunate at Cedar Falls Community Schools to house the UNI School Counseling Practicum students for the last two years. I have also had the pleasure of working as an adjunct instructor with the practicum students facilitating Seminar.
I love spending time with my husband, Shawn traveling, attending sporting events and visiting with our extended families. I have also been a Cedar Falls Human Rights Commissioner for 12 years.