Dear Friends,

Has this happened to you? You tell someone that you're a member of PCACAC, and they ask, "what's that?" What would you say?

Have you read our mission on the PCACAC website? As president, I've had occasion to re-read it and remind myself of our core purpose as an organization. PCACAC exists to "support and advance college admission professionals as they guide their institutions, students, and families in an ethical manner." We do this by advocating for students' rights in the admission process; by promoting college access, especially for the underserved; by promoting ethical professional behavior; and by offering professional development for our members.

So, how is PCACAC living up to its mission?

Two weeks ago, members of the Government Relations Committee descended on the General Assembly in Richmond. I joined their group, led by GRC chair Ginger Miller, as they met with several Virginia delegates and senators to advocate for reduced counselor-to-student ratios, improved college access, and promotion of ethical professional standards at higher education institutions. In a couple of weeks, our efforts will shift to the national stage for NACAC's Day on the Hill in Washington.

The PCACAC Annual Conference is coming! The Conference Planning Committee is putting together an exciting program for us at the Kingsmill Resort in Williamsburg on April 23-25. I've seen the list of breakout sessions, and we're going to have some dynamic and thought-provoking topics. Have you registered yet? If not, you can stop reading this and go straight to the online registration form. 

In addition, we will be offering a fantastic pre-conference workshop this year: Potomac and Chesapeake Admission Counselors Equity Collaborative. Chris Miller, chair of our Inclusion, Access, and Success committee, has gathered a great group of presenters for an interactive discussion of diversity, equity, and inclusive practices in college admission and counseling. I hope you'll join us for this exciting new addition. 

PCACAC members are actively engaged in NACAC's ongoing review of the Statement of Principles of Good Practice, and the Admissions Practices committee's monthly case study emails have become a model that other ACACs are copying to help educate professionals about how the ethical standards in our core document can guide us through real-life situations. Have you done this month's SPGP quiz yet?

And our Professional Development committee has been hard at work throughout our region, most recently in Fairfax County, where they offered a full day of training for public school counselors earlier this month. Be on the lookout for more programs coming up, including a more relaxed event for those on the college side next month after the northern Virginia college fairs.

These are just a few examples of how PCACAC is living its mission, and we wouldn't even have a mission without members like you. Thank you, as always, for all that you do for our students and our profession, and I look forward to seeing you in Williamsburg in April!

Anthony Ambrogi
President, Potomac & Chesapeake Association for College Admission Counseling

Director of Admissions and Enrollment Research, Randolph-Macon College