Skip to main content

2013 Counselor Institute & Luncheon in Denver

Sponsored by the Associated Colleges of the Midwest (ACM)

The ACM Counselor Institute and Luncheon was a one-day program designed to help counselors guide their students in navigating the college selection process and applying to college.

  • Friday, October 11, 2013
  • Maggiano's Little Italy - Denver South
    7401 S. Clinton, Englewood (map & directions)

The morning was devoted to the Counselor Institute, a professional development workshop focused on the admissions and financial aid process at independent, selective liberal arts colleges. Following the Institute was a luncheon where counselors engaged with admission officers and heard updates on opportunities for students at the 14 ACM colleges.

Scroll down for links to materials provided at the Counselor Institute.

Admissions Faculty

  • Doug Badger, Director of Admission, Grinnell College
  • Alex Catalan, Assistant Director of Admissions & Coordinator of Multicultural Recruitment, Beloit College
  • Macaela Holmes Fuller, Assistant Director of Admission, Cornell College
  • Roberto Garcia, Director of Admission, Colorado College
  • Sarah Goldman, Assistant Director of Admission, Knox College
  • Josh Kite, Associate Director of Admission, Coe College
  • Jennifer Motzer, Associate Director of Admissions and Western Representative (based in Denver), Lake Forest College

Counselor Institute


7:30 am - Doors open. Sign in, continental breakfast, and networking.

8:00-10:15 am - Plenary

  • Helping Students Find Fit: A Partnership between Colleges and Counselors
    Moderators: Roberto Garcia and Jennifer Motzer
  • Application Review Committee Exercise
    Interactive discussions and small group breakout sessions will provide an inside view of the application process at selective liberal arts colleges.
    Moderators: Doug Badger and Josh Kite

For Counselor Institute participants - Prior to the Institute, please download and read all of the following materials for the application review committee exercise:
Application Review Instructions
Kenneth Aldman Application
Mary Leavitt Application
Christina Moore Application

10:30-11:45 am - Sessions (choose one):

  • "Unpacking" Financial Aid
    Presenter: Jim Swanson, Director of Financial Aid, Colorado College
    Why do students' aid awards vary -- sometimes by a large amount -- from one college to another? In this hands-on session, participants will engage in a financial aid packaging exercise and discussion to get an inside view of the various models, challenges, and competing priorities that financial aid officers face in awarding aid to students. Download materials for this session.
  • For Our Eyes Only – Effective Recommendations and Essays
    Presenters: Jennifer Motzer and Sarah Goldman
    Counselors are involved in two parts of the college application that directly tell admission officers stories about applicants – recommendations and the students' personal essays. In this session, we'll discuss why these stories are important, how they fit into the overall evaluation of an applicant, and give some tips for effective writing, both for you and for your students.
    Writing Effective Recommendation Letters - Presented by Jennifer Motzer
    The Finished Essay! - Presented by Sarah Goldman


11:45 am - Doors open. Talk individually with admission officers from the 14 ACM colleges and browse the college tables.

12:15-2:30 pm - Luncheon and Program

  • Updates from the ACM campuses
  • A conversation with a panel of recent graduates of ACM colleges
    Moderators: Alex Catalan and Macaela Holmes Fuller

2:30-3:00 pm - Talk with admission officers and browse the college tables.