Counselor’s Corner: Evie Ellis

Evie Ellis - Head Counselor 2024

After getting our campers settled into the Gatton Building yesterday, today we will embark on the first day of classes and evening activities including optionals, and our college chat. This will be my second year giving the college chat at Camp Discover, and it is one of my favorite conversations to have with students. 

I am a rising senior Computer Science Undergraduate with a minor in Mathematics and a concentration in Psychology at the University of South Carolina. When I was a rising seventh grader, I had no idea which opportunities were available for me as I would soon enter high school. Personally, I didn’t know what Computer Science entailed at their age, or how much I would grow to love it.

In my chat with Discover Campers, I will facilitate an open discussion between students about the wide array of majors Western Kentucky University offers, and how their opportunities might be similar to other college campuses. It is one of my favorite Discover experiences to hear campers talk through their interests and learn that many of their passions outside of school can be connected to an academic field.

Beyond academics, I discuss how many of the independent living aspects of college are similar to those introduced in Camp Discover. I talk about being in charge of your schedule, making good choices for your personal well being, and figuring out how to challenge yourself inside and outside of school. To help achieve this, I will show them my schedule in the Fall, and explain how the gaps in my schedule allow me to follow other passions, like teaching and managing my college’s radio station. I hope to excite our campers about the prospect of college by showing them the personal agency involved in the process and showing them that Camp Discover has already given them a head start to understanding how college works.

I close our chat by going through different ways to make college more affordable and by discussing how to put yourself in a better position to go to college. I talk about getting involved in clubs, taking challenging coursework, and befriending teachers, which are components they can start doing even before high school. Financially, I talk about scholarships, different options for schools, and eventually receiving AP or CLEP credits to bypass coursework in college.

Many students may not know which options are available, and many more ask how they can put themselves ahead early. Through this talk, I hope to engage with them, interest them in extra schooling, and feel empowered when they look toward the future.