A Message from our President

The past month has taken me to Austin to meet with our state legislators on policy that impacts students and educators, to Washington DC to attend NACAC leadership training and to meet with senators and members of Congress about funding to support students and our work with them, to Dallas to chair the annual conference for over 700 of our members and the annual TACAC Work Day with our Executive Board and 100+ of our members working together to plan for the year ahead. While physically and mentally exhausting at times (as our work can be), these past several weeks have served as a reminder of the importance of our organization and reinvigorated me as I step into the role of TACAC president. I am honored and humbled by the opportunity to serve the organization that is single-handedly responsible for the counselor that I am today.

TACAC exists to develop professionals. Through programs like ACCI, MMI, Drive-in Workshops, the webinar series, annual conference, and LDI, we support hundreds of high school counselors, admissions professionals, IECs and individuals who work with CBOs each year. We have well-established programming that meets the needs of many of our members. However, we need to be better about taking PD to those who don’t have the opportunity to travel to many of these events. I am particularly excited about the year head as we are moving from a two-day single LDI to four regional one-day LDI events held in Austin, Dallas, Houston, and San Antonio with the hope of expanding the program into other areas of the state each year. We are making active strides to secure a new platform for our webinar series that will allow us to expand the series and even have the possibility of live-streaming some of our PD events. We are continually committed to developing Drive-in Workshops that meet the needs of members in all parts of our state.

We are organizing our leadership to create direct relationships with each of the regional service centers throughout the state to help promote the work that we do and to offer to provide PD to the schools and districts that they serve. We are building relationships with organizations who share our mission of supporting kids to and through college like Texas GEAR UP and Big Thought, with the goal of providing PD to more professionals, but also to gain new perspective and learn from their experiences to better the work that we do.

The Inclusion, Access, and Support committee is developing a Diversity Peer Educator program that the will be rolling out over the next year. Equipping our members to handle conversations around multiculturalism and social justice is essential to the work that we do. Our kids are leagues ahead of us in many of those conversations. We have a long history of equipping professionals to support kids through the process of getting to and through post-secondary education, but we still have significant work to do in training individuals to support each individual young person that walks into their office.

I am excited about the year ahead and the opportunities that come with it. I invite each of you to come along for the ride by volunteering for a committee, attending one of our PD events, or submitting your name for leadership in the spring. The unique perspective and experience that only you can bring is essential to the success of our organization. I look forward to partnering with each of you as we both support and challenge one another to best advocate for and serve our students. #TACACItsAboutTime

 

Micah Lyles

TACAC President

[email protected]