Academic Coach + Life Coach= Academic Life Coach!
Learning. Communication. Joy. Empathy.
These are my core values. I did not take a straight path to coaching. I always loved books and words and my undergraduate degree is in foreign languages. I went to law school, but left my law career when I realized billable hours were not a motivation for me. What could I do that would be of service to others and align with my values?
To answer my own question, I connected with my passion for education by becoming a substitute teacher and explored whether I wanted to become a full-time educator. I jumped at the opportunity to work in a library (books!) and start a teen program at the library. I was surprised to find the joy that came with working with teenagers and being witness to their journey from teen to young adult, with all of the questions, challenges, setbacks, and successes.
It was while working with the teens at the library (and while my own children were in their teens) that I realized teenagers do not always learn essential life skills, such as how to study using specific tools and strategies, how to recognize and overcome obstacles, how to communicate effectively, and how to identify and demonstrate their passions. I then discovered the Academic Life Coaching Program and became certified as an Academic Life Coach.
Since then, I have built a reputation for helping students achieve their desired outcomes in school, sports, and life. I give clients the space to experience their “aha” moments as they increase their self-awareness and consequently, their self-confidence. I help parents and teens improve communication and gain perspective by focusing on effort and process, instead of viewing results as judgments. I bring my core values of joy, imagination, curiosity, mindfulness, and empathy to my coaching. I help my clients identify their own core values and make decisions which align with their values.
I believe we can model how to be successful and grateful and thereby create a more informed and more civil society. Teenagers and young adults who learn essential life skills such as study skills, resilience, gratitude, empathy, and how to achieve desired outcomes will be confident and compassionate leaders.
I encourage mindfulness: being grateful, being present, being aware, being authentic. I enjoy walks, reading, TV mysteries, my vegetable garden, and spending time with my husband of 30 plus years, my family, and my friends. I love to find humor wherever I can (I also think I am much funnier than my family does!) I believe that if everyone treats others as they want to be treated themselves, this world will be a better place. We have the ability to create, accept, and share positive energy.
I am curious about how we learn. I believe we are programmed to learn, and I want to help you understand how you learn and get you excited about learning. I love witnessing clients learn about themselves and apply that learning to being their best self.
Learning. Communication. Joy. Empathy.
These are the values I bring to coaching. I can't wait to see what you bring!
Colleen Gecawich provides expert--and what our family has found to be life-changing--academic support needs to young adults. Her understanding of individual learning needs has changed our son's experience as a student and has exponentially increased his confidence in his ability to succeed academically and beyond. Colleen clearly understands the bigger picture and has a solid plan for immediate interventions and how they build on each other and work toward a solid foundation for both academic and personal success. I am forever grateful we found Colleen and her services!
Parent of a High School Freshman
Thank you for taking the time to work with Anastasia. I truly believe that your academic life coaching has given her different perspectives and positive ways to look at and approach school, sports and life. They are invaluable lessons and tools. I have to agree with you that she is a special girl. We will plan something celebratory for her...Thank you again for everything.
Parent of a High School Sophomore Athlete
I wanted to thank you for working with our son and leading him through your Academic Life Coaching program. He has always been a great kid, but he had a hard time focusing his attention to complete projects, study for tests and manage his time. While he enjoyed school, at times his grades brought him down.
I think that our son was impressed with your ability to figure out his learning style and get him to see this for himself. He felt comfort in someone understanding him, accepting him and encouraging him.
While he is still outgoing and eager to share his thoughts, he has become more aware of himself. He has taken ownership in his education, which has removed daily conflicts at home. He routinely seeks out his teachers to clarify material, help with organization and follow up with them if he did not receive the grade he was expecting.
At home, he has continued to keep his room better organized. He is much more aware of distractions and is working towards staying on task using some of the tools you worked on during your time together. I think he feels better about himself, is more confident in his abilities and excepting of his setbacks. He continues to be enthusiastic about school and I am glad that he has learned some tools to help him manage his time.
This has been such a positive experience for our son. We have noticed a huge improvement in his outlook on life and all its possibilities.
Parent of An Eighth Grade Student
I would like to say how pleased I am with the change in my daughter's attitude toward achieving academic goals. Colleen coached my daughter through a transfer in her junior year. She went from the public high school to the more rigorous curriculum of a private academy. Colleen honed my daughter's organizational skills. Colleen helped my daughter to visualize and implement success in classes in which she had previously doubted her aptitude. I do not have any qualms now about my daughter's ability to segue smoothly from high school to the demands of college. Amazingly enough Colleen Gecawich accomplished all of this using Skype and email as we were states apart.
Parent of a High School Junior
Ethan has been generous with his time over winter break and has shared a good amount of time with family. May it be playing board games, walking in the park, I'm really happy that he has been trying and has changed for the better. I hope that he will continue with this. Thank you for your time and encouragement in your part.
Parent of A High School Freshman