At its recent annual Counselors’ Conference, Lake-Sumter State College recognized the importance of high school counselors in supporting and preparing students to enroll in college or postsecondary education.

“Our LSSC staff would not be able to do their work without the strong partnerships from local high school counselors,” says Jenni Kotowski, LSSC’s executive director of enrollment management. “These counselors support and assist their students through each step of the college decision and enrollment process.”

LSSC recognized five counselors for 2021 for their excellence in supporting and preparing students for their postsecondary education: Amy Henges, The Villages High School; Catherine Lockett, Leesburg High School; Rob Merrill, South Lake High School; Carrie “Cookie” Norman-Tadlock, South Sumter High School; and Jeremy Thomas, Liberty Christian Preparatory School.

“Over the past year, these counselors and all counselors in our area have shown great resilience in continuing to engage and motivate their students both in an online format and in person,” said Kotowski.

The annual Counselor’s Conference is held during National School Counseling Week in February, and is an opportunity for high school counselors from across Lake and Sumter Counties, including public and private schools, to meet to learn about updates from Lake-Sumter State College. Lake County Schools and Sumter County Schools also provide updates on their career and technical education opportunities.

Lake-Sumter State College serves more than 6,000 students annually at three locations: Leesburg, Clermont and Sumterville. Learn more at