Meet Dina Kohler

Dina Kohler
Corner Canyon High School (UT)

How did you wind up in the counseling field?
When I was in high school I had an amazing school counselor, Mary Ellen Anderson. She helped me plan to get out of a very challenging situation. High school was very difficult for me. I quickly fell behind in credits and by my senior year, I realized I was not on track for graduation nor did I have a plan for post high school life. My counselor helped me plan to get a high school diploma after my class had already graduated. She also helped me apply to the local junior college. I honestly believe I would not have gone on to higher education had it not been for her help and support. She changed the trajectory of my life. Because she believed in me, I believed in myself! I am the first member of my family to earn a college degree. She is why I am a counselor today.

What is your favorite part of the job?
Working with students. I love helping them discover solutions for their concerns, fears, and goals. I have always had a passion for helping young people.

How has NACAC played a role in your career?
NACAC has opened my counseling world. There are many lesson plans available online that can be used in teaching college and career readiness. NACAC is great at offering all counselors support. I have also enjoyed the many friends I have made from the college admission world and the high school counseling world, which would not have possible without the NACAC connection. NACAC makes me a better counselor.

What do you think is the biggest challenge facing new counselors?
The student of today has many needs. Counselors need to be knowledgeable in many areas, requiring a counselor to wear many hats. Many times, we are instrumental in helping students with their social-emotional wellbeing before we can help them with college preparedness.

When you aren’t working, what do you like to do?
First of all, I LOVE food! Eating out with family and friends is my greatest pastime. Secondly, I enjoy the outdoors by biking, hiking and my version of run/walking (I mean I’ve got to try to work off some of that food, right?). Finally, I am a lifelong learner. I always seem to find myself in some type of class.

If you could be any fictional character, who would it be and why?
Wonder Woman! No explanation needed.

Describe yourself in five words.
Dedicated, hard-working, supportive, fun, Latina.

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