August 11, 2022 

  1. President's Message
  2. Summer Institute Highlights
  3. Conference Logo Competition
  4. 58th Conference
  5. Rural & Small Town SIG Mini College Prep Workshops
  6. Fall College Fairs
  7. Living History Series
  8. Communications Committee
  9. Professional Development 
  10. Admission Practices 

Welcome to the Anchor Splash!

Created to share the hottest activities and trends in the world of college admissions! 


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PCACAC in the News

Professional Development In and Out of Our Region


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A Message from our President                                                                                                                

Dear PCACAC Members,

I hope that this edition of the Anchor Splash finds you actively soaking up the last weeks of summer while preparing to welcome students back to your communities. 

The PCACAC Board and Leadership Team have been busy planning for another fantastic year. The full board met at the University of Maryland in late July for our summer meeting. All committee chairs shared reports about the great work they are planning for the year ahead. I can assure you, there is so much to be excited about in the coming months. 

We also are gearing up to attend the 78th NACAC National Conference in Houston, Texas happening on September 21-24. PCACAC will host a table at the conference center to provide attendees information about NACAC’s 79th National Conference to be held in Baltimore in September 2023. 

There are many, many opportunities to assist our PCACAC Local Arrangements Committee (Chaired by Jayne Fonash and Lisa Hill) as we prepare to welcome thousands of colleagues to our region next fall. Thank you for considering our invitation for volunteers when the time comes. We need your help to produce a fantastic conference experience. And, as we know, we are #StrongerTogether.

Before Baltimore 2023 is Houston 2022. If you are attending the Houston conference in person, please join us on Thursday, September 22, 7pm-8pm (Houston time) for some PCACAC networking and fun. We’ll gather at The Rustic (1836 Polk St, Houston) a casual, local spot with live music and good vibes. Nibbles hosted by PCACAC, thirst quenchers on your own. 

Please also mark your calendar for our virtual PCACAC Fall Membership Meeting on September 29, 2022, 11:30am-1:00pm. Zoom

Last, but not least, a call for volunteers. We are looking for leaders for the following:

  • Chair & Vice Chair of our Professional Development CommitteePlease email Ann Marie Strauss to express your interest.

  • Social Media Maven/Maverick(s) to work with our Communications CommitteePlease email Kristen Carter to express your interest.

Thank you for your continued interest and dedication to PCACAC, to our shared vision and to your own communities. We are grateful to do this good work with you. 

Ann Marie Strauss
PCACAC President

Summer Institute Highlights

The 19th Annual PCACAC Summer Institute was held at scenic St. Mary’s College of Maryland. There were over 105 registrants along with 26 faculty which made it the largest Summer Institute in recent memory - if not the largest ever held! From the opener PCACAC 101, to insightful sessions including Supporting Historically Excluded Student Groups, The Art and Science of Territory Management, Get in the Game: Best Practices for Guiding Student-Athletes, to the closing panel Knowing What We Know Now: Identifying Trends and Solving Problems, it was an enriching experience for all.

Attendees shared what they learned at the Summer Institute:

“I learned that although this is a small profession everyone is motivated towards one goal. We all want what is best and will do what we can (within our power) to accommodate students and their needs. To do this, PCACAC has a lot of resources that we can use!”

“I work in a territory with a lot of CBO’s so it was helpful to go to a session that spoke about why they do and how they’re helpful to students.”

“I learned in the Supporting Historically Excluded Student Groups session that we are these student’s biggest resource. We have to support them individually, to meet them where THEY are. You never know what situations these students are in and no matter what it is; we must give our all to support them. We have to align ourselves with the goals of our institution.”

A huge thanks and appreciation to Alice Whitener, Professional Development Committee Chair, for her insight and support, and to Kevin Zimmerman and Butch Hamilton, Summer Institute Co-Chairs, for helping to create a fantastic program for our new colleagues in the field of college admission and counseling!

Conference Logo Competition – 5 days to go!

YOU can design the conference logo for the PCACAC 58th Annual Conference! Designs can be submitted to [email protected] through Monday, August 15th. The designer of the winning logo will receive a 50% discount on this year’s conference registration! More details are available here.



Keep an eye on PCACAC's 58th conference web page for updates and info regarding the conference April 2-4, 2023! Details and updates will be shared and made available there as they become available.   

While the CPC is underway and planning has begun, we always welcome members to join in on the planning efforts. If interested, please email Conference Planning Chair Damian Garcia or Conference Planning Vice Chair Julia Hixson.

Rural & Small Town SIG Mini College Prep Workshops

The Rural and Small Town SIG will be hosting Mini College Prep Workshops this fall and we need faculty. Any volunteers, especially those who will already be on the VACRAO circuit, are encouraged to volunteer. Each workshop will be followed by a scheduled regional college fair. We need folks who are willing to cover the following. 
  • A General Panel
  • The College Essay
  • What to know before the College Fair
  • The Application
  • Any other topic suggestions are welcome!
The workshops will take place: 
  • Saturday, September 10, 2022 - Martinsville. VA
  • Sunday, September 11, 2022 from 2pm - 5pm - Grundy, VA 
  • TBD - Eastern Shore, MD October 2022
  • TBD - West Virginia October 2022

If you are interested in helping please contact SIG Co-Chair Alison Weston, or Rural & Small Town SIG Co-Chairs Rachelle Davis and James Pennix

Fall 2022 College Fairs!

Fall 2022 college fairs are around the corner, and we are excited to invite you to register your event via this form. We thank you for all that you do and look forward to supporting your upcoming initiative. Contact our College Fair/College Night Chairs with any questions-- Margaret Omwenga  and Chris Gothard.

* Fairfax County Public Schools' College Fair *

FCPS with George Mason University Office of Admission presents their 47th annual College Fair on Sunday, October 16, 2022 at Eagle Bank Arena, 4500 Patriot Circle, Fairfax, VA 22030 4:00-7:00 PM.

Register Now: 2022 College Fair Registration  If you have questions contact FCPS School Counseling Services.

 * Fredericksburg Regional College Night *

Students and parents from Stafford County, Fredericksburg City, Spotsylvania County, King George County & surrounding areas are invited to attend their annual college night on Wednesday, October 19, 2022 from 6:30-8:30 PM at Spotsylvania Town Center. Registration is through VACRAO. Contact Tamara LaPonte.

Living History Series

This issue of the Anchor Splash offers another in a series of articles showcasing PCACAC’s Living History! Veteran PCACAC leaders are using this space to reflect on their years in PCACAC and our profession. They will share the fun, the joy, their involvement and the lessons learned from their long-time service to PCACAC. Continue to check out this space for future inspiring articles in the months to come.

If you would like to share your PCACAC experiences with the membership, contact Sue Rexford, PCACAC Historian, to help us add your reflections to our rich history! Check out this month's Living History article by Arlene Ingram.

 Call for Communications Volunteers

Podcast Volunteers / Host The Anchor Exchange podcast production team is gearing up for Season 2! Opportunities include help with episode planning and outlining, editing, social media content creation, and scouting for guests. You could even join the team as a permanent host or be a guest host for an episode or two. No particular experience is necessary.

Social Media Volunteer Help promote PCACAC events, activities, accomplishments and more to our members using your social media acumen. We are seeking a volunteer to manage the PCACAC Facebook, Instagram and Twitter accounts. Time commitment is minimal.

To volunteer for the Communications Committee with the podcast, as the social media manager, or in any other capacity, please contact Communications Chair, Kristen Carter.

Professional Development Needs You

NEW! The Professional Development Committee is seeking ‘Regional Captains’ to help PCACAC with outreach and supporting professional development efforts throughout our region.

What does a Regional Captain do?

  • Identify conferences within the region to which PCACAC could submit session proposals related to college admission counseling and/or send representatives on behalf of PCACAC to be an exhibitor at conferences (regional School Counselor Associations, regional College Access Networks) Serve as a point-of-contact within our region to support professional efforts of institutions, CBOs, school systems and other educational professionals, to include outreach to these institutions that are not typically involved in PCACAC
  • Assist with organization of Drive-In Workshops local to their region to support a one-day professional development event for professionals typically underrepresented in our region (public school counselors, CBOs, community colleges admissions professionals)
  • Support PCACAC Professional Development events through attendance and/or organizing and presenting sessions on various topics  

We hope to identify Regional Captains throughout the PCACAC region (Delaware, District of Columbia, Maryland, Virginia, West Virginia).  

We would love for you to JOIN US! Complete this Google Form by September 1, 2022 

Questions? Contact Alice Whitener, outgoing Professional Development Chair 

Join the Admission Practices Committee

The Admission Practices Committee is looking to grow! Are you interested in wrestling with the professional ethics of our industry, and helping others do so as well? The Admission Practices committee is looking to add members interested in connecting with our community members to discuss the nuances and implications of the best practices outlined in the Guide to Ethical Practice in College Admission. Please contact Casey Zimmer if you are interested in joining.


Connect With Us



Potomac & Chesapeake Association for College Admission Counseling (PCACAC)

PO Box 8308, Charlottesville, VA 22906 | 434-989-7557  | [email protected]