Radha Mishra
Director of College Counseling
The Hun School of Princeton (NJ)

What drew you to the world of college admission counseling?
We moved to the United States in 2001 when my children were in elementary school. As they went through the marvelously racially diverse public school district, I realized that there was an absolute lack of racial diversity amongst the faculty and staff. This was such an egregious deficiency, I thought, particularly in an otherwise excellent public school district and its guidance department. This motivated me to enroll for my Masters in School Counseling at TCNJ (The College of New Jersey) and the rest is history. It is important for all my students and families, even more so for those who were perhaps not born and raised in the United States, to experience the diversity of look, thought, and values that I bring to guidance/college counseling.

What is your favorite part of the job?
Without a doubt getting to know the students. At Hun, the foundation of my work is built on the relationships I nurture with every student. Perhaps the best part of my job is when the alums return to visit and bring their many stories with them.

How has NACAC played a role in your career?
NACAC has introduced me to colleagues, conversations, and cultures, which I might have otherwise missed. My growth as an educator has been driven to a significant extent by discussions, ideas, and most importantly peers I have encountered at various NACAC forums.

What do you think is the biggest challenge facing our profession today?
Specifically, from where I sit, my biggest challenge is the increasingly competitive and unpredictable admissions landscape. This diminishes the joy and excitement of the college search process and replaces it with anxiety and stress.

Overall, one of the biggest challenges is the rising unaffordability of a college education. I wonder what the sticker price will be in five years!

When you aren’t working, what do you like to do?
When I’m not working I’m either spending time with family here in the United States or running off to India to see parents/family.

And, of course, I binge watch sense and nonsense from around the world!

If you could be any fictional character, who would it be and why?
I’m currently reading Dictionary of Lost Words by Pip Williams, and Esme, the female protagonist, is entirely remarkable. Esme seeks no grand narrative in life, and yet she achieves it. She quietly records women’s experiences and their words; words which are considered “less than” and would have been lost if not for her endeavor. Esme, in her entirely understated way, creates an alternative dictionary of “lost words.”


Published May 15, 2023