By Eleni Bow
According to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were about 322,000 school counselor jobs in 2020, and the number is projected to grow by 11 percent by 2030. Delta contributed to this rising number this past summer, with the hiring of a new counselor.
Mrs. Cindy Kunda first joined the Delta High School staff in 2014 as a counselor, helping students with conflicts, schedules and future planning. Eight years later, her title changed to the Director of Early College and Career Counseling. She now focuses most on the school’s dual credit program.
As a counselor, Kunda would work with students going through social, emotional and peer situations. Responsibilities such as dual credit enrollment, state department reports, career searching and college visits are what fill her days now.
Planning college visits is something Kunda has been particularly focused on these last few weeks.
The school-wide college visit day is Thursday, Sept. 1. Students will visit an Indiana college based on their grade level. While she will not be traveling to any of the colleges that day, Kunda wants to offer students some options to consider as they tour these campuses.
Freshmen will be visiting the Muncie location of Ivy Tech Community College. Sophomores will travel to Anderson University, and juniors will go to Indiana University in Richmond. The seniors will be staying close to home by touring Ball State University.
Aspects such as programs, scholarships and tuition costs, she says, are the biggest things students should keep in mind. “I think it’s important for students to visit campuses on their own as well, just so they get a feel of being able to visit classes,” Kunda adds.
Now that Kunda is in a new position, the school had to find a new hire to refill her previous position. Enter Mrs. Lynn Calloway.
After graduating from Purdue University, Calloway started out as an agriculture teacher at Oak Hill High School and later became one of the counselors. She stayed there for a total of 15 years, then moved on to another school.
Working solely as a counselor, Calloway stayed at Tipton Middle School for 10 years, but she began itching for a change. Delta caught her eye for a multitude of reasons.
Most important to her was that Delta was a high school, which was the level of students she liked to work with best. Secondly, she heard what a nice place it was from Delta guidance counselor Mr. Roger Spaulding, with whom she worked at Oak Hill.
“It’s nice to work with a group that’s like a family,” Calloway says.
Delta is the biggest school she’s worked at with about 800 total students, compared to the less than 500 at Tipton and Oak Hill. Due to this size, Calloway wants to give extra attention to pairing as many names with faces as possible.
“I also want to see what in the first year students feel like we need to add, and then start working toward those things they think we need,” she says.
Calloway has two sons – Camden, a sophomore at Purdue University, and Conner, a junior at Tipton High School. She and her husband travel with them around the country to watch 4H shows and be a part of FFA.
The Calloway family has owned and showed different animals, including rabbits, chicken and sheep. “Some people go to Disneyland, we go to a [4H] show,” Calloway says. When she needs to clear her mind, Calloway makes her way outside to care for the animals or cozies up inside with a paperback book.
The 2022-2023 school year has only taken place for less than three weeks, yet she has already made up her mind about her work environment.
“I love it here. The people are nice…everyone’s been very polite and understanding.”