Meet Linda Binion

Linda Binion
Director of Counseling
North Shore High School (NY)
Twitter: @nshorecounselor

How did you become the director of counseling at North Shore High School?
I started my career in a small, rural school district where I was the sole counselor for all students K-12. Whenever I tell someone I worked K-12 I am always asked what grade level I enjoy the most. My answer is always the same - all of them. Since then I have worked in larger school systems with around 24,000 students, but my passion for leading a K-12 comprehensive school counseling program continues. North Shore has also taught me that there were many twists and turns in life, but sometimes you really can go home again. After serving in the role of counseling director in Virginia, I have finally returned to my home state of New York.

What made you decide to get into this field?
I chose to enter the school counseling field because I couldn’t imagine doing anything else. School counselors make a difference and change lives. I can think of no better job.

What is your favorite part of the job?
This is a hard question because there are so many parts of the job that I love. As a counselor, the best moments were when a student would trust me enough to share their story and their journey with me. It is an honor when another person knows that you respect and believe in them enough to engage in the counseling relationship.

As a counseling supervisor, I enjoy the adult learning process. I love to prepare highly engaging, fun, and informative workshops that keep you glued to your seat. I just provided a workshop to parents and at the end of the workshop a mother approached me and said that she was going to leave the workshop for a previously scheduled appointment. But she ended up canceling that appointment because she just had to hear what I was going to say next.

How has NACAC played a role in your career?
My experiences with NACAC have ranged from presenting at the NYSACAC conference to serving on the Access, Inclusion, and Success committee. I have always appreciated the advocacy, knowledge, and relationships that NACAC has provided to me. As a district counseling director, you can be pulled in many different directions. NACAC is my go-to source for information pertaining to the college admission process. Today’s parents are savvy when it comes to the college application process and the tools that NACAC provides help me to be proactive and to better prepare students for success.

When you aren’t working, what do you like to do?
We live in a world where we are bombarded with so much information and technology. My favorite activities provide an escape from the computer screen. I enjoy spending time outdoors with my family, whether that be taking a walk or talking late into the evening on the back deck. I also enjoy travelling anywhere I can meet interesting people and experience something new.

If you could be any fictional character, who would it be and why?
I enjoy the Harry Potter series because the characters are well-developed and the story line is well … magical. I am a lot like Hermione Granger because she is a confident and intelligent leader with true grit. Yet, despite this tough exterior she is also a compassionate and loyal friend. In one of her most touching scenes, she alters her parent’s memories so they will not remember anything about her in an attempt to keep them safe. Although it was painful, she put others ahead of herself which is a desirable trait indeed.

Describe yourself in five words.
Creative, kind, open-minded, intelligent, and random.

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