According to Mrs. Karl, this is “a new position and separate from the role of guidance counselor. This role was created to focus entirely on helping students at a much earlier age think about the type of college they are interested in attending and the preparations necessary for this process.” Mrs. Karl further comments, “Leslie will maximize the students’ possibilities in college choice by examining more challenging colleges and universities as well as performing a more extensive examination of scholarships and academic awards.”
Dr. Watson, along with her late husband John, were owners of a study abroad business for college students, and previously owned the Canterbury Rams Basketball Team located in New Zealand. In addition, Dr. Watson worked as an associate professor at Lincoln University in Christchurch, New Zealand. Since moving to Allegany she has been active in many volunteer programs.
Dr. Watson has an M.Sc. and Ph.D. from Penn State in leisure studies, with a minor in human development and family studies. Her undergraduate degree is from Brock University in Ontario, Canada. Through her Ph.D. program, she developed her academic work in adolescent development and life span psychology, working with notable professors whose published works concentrated on adolescents. She has numerous published works on related topics dealing with life transition events of adolescents, psychological perspectives, leisure behavior, and the transition from adolescence to adulthood as well as in business and tourism.
“Leslie brings a unique background to this position. She holds citizenships in Canada, New Zealand, and Hungary and is a permanent resident of the United States,” stated Beth Powers, president of the Walsh and STCS Board of Trustees. “Leslie really is a citizen of the world. Her perspective and experience will help us leverage the opportunities for Walsh graduates due to our ability to offer our students a world class education through the International Baccalaureate Diploma program. We are excited about the possibilities in offering this type of college admissions counseling program to our students.”
Dr. Watson is currently completing her certification in college admissions counseling through UCLA.