College counselor graduates to new opportunities

College+counselor+graduates+to+new+opportunities

LEXI GOOD, STAFF WRITER

   After 13 years, Director of College Counseling LJ Johnson is leaving behind a legacy of life long support for the students that he helped on their college journey. 

  “The legacy that I hope to leave behind is that my students know that 10 years from now, I am once their college counselor, always their college counselor,” Johnson said.

   Previously working as a Yale admissions officer for Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico, Johnson has bright plans ahead of him. 

   “I want to have fun wherever I end up working next,” Johnson said. “I’ve looked at rejoining my pals on the other side of the desk, including returning to either of my alma maters Columbia and Yale, or reaching out to my network at other colleges. But this side of the desk is where my heart is.”

   Johnson said that he always found his work at Trinity rewarding.

   “[It’s] the high fives in the hallway, the personalized interaction with my counselees,” Johnson said. “Also, when students blop down to take a load off to discuss their worries, joys and plans for the future. I’ve enjoyed helping students realize that college is merely the next step on a much larger and longer journey; that there are many routes to the same destination.”

   Johnson encouraged students to keep their options open during the college application process. For example, he is always sure to put the term “safety school” in air quotes, as he is adamant that a student’s  “safety school” could be the perfect fit.

   “I’ve had students come back from a so-called ‘safety’ college just to say ‘thank you,'” Johnson said. I’ve got my peeps at college x and I’m doing this, this and that. Those are the real rewards for me or any counselor in my profession.”