Robinson purchases Family Connections


Alanna Felton, A&E Editor

Most Robinson students would probably be surprised to hear that the school has purchased a new program called Family Connections, and those who have heard are probably wondering what it has to do with them.

Family Connections is a website which students can use to research careers and colleges, set goals for the future, build checklists, learn about scholarship opportunities, and communicate with their counselors. In the words of college and career counselor Meredith Wright, it “keeps everything in one place for everybody- for students and teachers”.  Every Robinson student has a free account (which have been individually registered by IT Resource Jack Miles), which they can access by going to and entering their student ID number as a username and date of birth (in MMDDYYYY format) as a password.

Both Wright and guidance couselor Erika George suggest that students start using the program as early as freshman year. The website has a resume-building feature, which George advises students to start working on early.

“So they can build it with time instead of doing it all at once,” George said.

Students can also use Family Connections as a database to explore colleges, limiting searches with a wide range of specifications that include school size, location, majors offered, and political climate. Anne Eason, a volunteer at Robinson’s CUBE, praises Family Connections.

“[It] opens up possibilities for students to research colleges and opportunities that they might not have otherwise known existed,” Eason said.

There are so many colleges to choose from that selection can be an overwhelming process for students, but Family Connections can help to simplify research.

“The search…  helps them narrow it down, if they know what they want to study, to a major, and to see which schools have that major,” Wright said.

Students can also create and save lists of colleges that they are looking into for future reference, keeping all of their findings in one location.

Counselors have access to the program, which they can use to give students information about scholarship opportunities, college visits to RHS, Bright Futures, FASFA, and SAT test dates.

“Instead of giving students six websites, we can give them one with a link to everything they need to do,” Wright said.

As well as serving as a college search tool, Family Connections can be used to explore possible career paths based off of students’ interests. Students can take interest surveys to help them figure what out what kind of post-secondary education they might want to pursue, and, if they are attending college, what they want to major in.

Elle Frierson (’18) has tried the program.

“[It’s] really helpful because you can narrow it down from a bunch of broad subjects to get a lot of specific details,” Frierson said.