Katie Dorn is a new guidance counselor at Orono High School. Her focus area is on college planning and admissions. With an almost 30-year background in marketing, this is a new career for Dorn.
Navigating the college planning process is not new to Dorn. She has six daughters and one son. Her oldest child graduated from college, two of her kids are in college and two will go next year.
“I wanted to do something I was passionate about, and I absolutely love this,” said Dorn.
A native of Edina, Dorn graduated Cum Laude from Colorado College in 1982 with a Bachelor of Arts in economics. She recently completed her Masters in school counseling at the Adler Graduate School of Psychology in Richfield.
She said she loves her new position at Orono High School.
“I absolutely love it, this is a gem of a school,” she said. “I can’t think of a better place to start. It’s such a nice community and it’s a really nice size.”
Dorn had three internships while obtaining her counseling license. She provided college and career counseling to students at Edina High School. She also supported middle school students with academic, career and personal counseling in Eden Prairie. Dorn also worked with elementary students with unique challenges and academic needs in Hutchinson.
For eight years, she volunteered one day each week in the college/career center at Minnetonka High School. While there, Dorn facilitated a weekly meeting with a group of high school girls to provide support and encouragement.
She also participated as a parent on a district-wide climate task force at Minnetonka High School.
“I spearheaded a whole initiative called Get Connected, which was a multi-grade effort to promote belonging and significance so that students felt connected at a large high school,” said Dorn. “We did service learning, leadership development and a ninth grade mentorship program.”
Dorn’s other work experiences include being the owner/president of Nantucket Marketing. She has consulted with newly venture-funded companies on their branding, public relations and advertising. She also worked in sales and marketing for a computer software company, as a freelance writer and a publisher.
She said that a big initiative for Orono is to be more intentional about building relationships with college admissions representatives.
“That’s where my marketing and sales part comes in,” said Dorn. “To make them feel welcome and to have more colleges visiting.”
She said that they’re also promoting college visits using Twitter of Facebook.
There are a lot of college options and there are a lot of schools that can be a good fit,” she said. “Somehow along the line people have gotten confused that the harder a school is to get into, the better the school is.”
Dorn stresses that it’s what student do when they get to college that makes the difference.
“We’re being more intentional about having kids look inside to do some self discovery their sophomore and junior year and then say ‘what does that mean for me?’,” she said.