The College Blueprint Team
The College Blueprint, LLC provides comprehensive career guidance and college preparation for middle, high school and college students. Founded in 2003, The College Blueprint, LLC, has grown into a vibrant college counseling practice with counselors in Orange, Riverside and San Diego Counties of California and in the mid-Atlantic region near Washington, D.C. Through the use of technology we are able to work with students all over the United States, including students in such diverse locations as Idaho, Nebraska, Oregon, Arizona, Texas and Massachusetts.
College Blueprint counselors have worked with hundreds of students and their parents to find the right match for their student’s post-secondary career. Believing every student is unique and has his or her own educational pathway, the staff at The College Blueprint, LLC assists students with discovering who they are, what careers they are interested in, and what they want to get out of life, providing them with the foundation to successfully plan and implement their next steps after high school.
Jan Kerchner, President and Founder of The College Blueprint, LLC
Jan Kerchner has been an independent educational consultant in southern California for over 20 years.
In founding The College Blueprint Jan had a vision and mission to assist students and their parents with preparing for college and finding the right fit for each student along that student’s personalized college path. Transforming her mission into a vibrant comprehensive counseling practice with resources including many specialized areas of counseling, Jan and her staff of credentialed counselors, all with advanced education degrees, support students across southern California, the entire United States and internationally. In addition to her private practice, Jan consults with private schools, and with public school districts including Long Beach Unified, one of the largest districts in California.
As a former board member and Chairman of the Irvine Public School Foundation, her influence has benefitted the city of Irvine’s public schools for many years. Having toured extensively, Jan continues to evaluate hundreds of university campuses across the country and is frequently sought after to present her insights on the State of College Admissions. With an MBA from Cornell University, B.S. from Penn State, and a College Counseling Certificate from UCLA, Jan is also a Professional Member of the prestigious Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA). While Jan and her husband are both originally from the East Coast, they have resided in southern California for over 30 years. The Kerchners raised three children in southern California; all have graduated college and are successfully launched in professional careers.
Jenna Clement received her Bachelors of Science in Business Administration and a Masters of Arts in Educational Counseling along with her Pupil Personnel Services Credential from the University of Redlands. She also holds a California Administrative Credential. She has worked in Education since 2009 at both the high school and college level and spent many of those years as a High School Counselor serving families as their 504 coordinator, college entrance advisor, and helping students with any challenges they face regarding academics struggles and class choices, personal or social issues, vocational and college aspirations, mental and physical health barriers, and learning differences. Jenna is also a Comprehensive Review Application Reader for the University of California, Irvine and has read thousands of college applications and essays. She is delighted to join The College Blueprint team as an Educational Consultant and provide families with an additional layer of support during middle school and high school. There is no life circumstance too difficult to overcome or student’s personal challenges too difficult to support throughout the college admission process. Jenna is married to her high school sweetheart, Jeff, and they are raising two sons, Yukon and Holden.
Lauren Brown has been an Educational Consultant with The College Blueprint since 2013. She was born and raised here in Southern California but has lived in many places around the country, including Arizona, Pennsylvania, and Northern Virginia. After meeting her husband in Washington, DC and having their two kids, Lauren returned to Southern California, where she now lives in Temecula with her family.
Lauren received her Bachelor of Liberal Studies in Business and Leadership from the University of Mary Washington, where she graduated with distinction. She then went on to earn her Certificate in Educational Consulting from the University of California, Irvine. And, recently, Lauren completed her Master of Education in School Counseling from the University of Southern California.
Lauren began her career working in Corporate Business Operation, where she managed many employees, but realized her true passion was working with students and their families. Having lived on both coasts, Lauren has a passion for working with students from all over the country and enjoys helping students streamline high school and the college application process, as well as finding their “best fit” school, wherever that may be.
Lauren is an Associate Member of the prestigious Independent Educational Consultants Association (IECA) and the American Counseling Association.
Eric Klein was born and raised in the Central Valley of California and has been a Southern California resident for a number of years. Eric has years of experience in higher education admission and brings the "other side of the desk" perspective. As a first-generation college student, Eric loves supporting students through the entire college search and selection process. Having worked at small, private institutions and highly selective universities, Eric has the in-depth knowledge needed to create comprehensive application plans. Eric completed his undergraduate work at California Lutheran University and received his Masters in Higher Education from California State University, Fullerton. He enjoys running and spending time at the beach with his wife and Corgi.
Jennifer Reider is a California native that was born in Orange County and raised in Temecula. She received her bachelor's degree from California State University, Long Beach with a degree in Journalism and Communications. Prior to becoming a counselor, she had a variety of jobs in entertainment from working on sets for television shows to working behind the scenes marketing for The Simpsons TM. After feeling unfulfilled in her career in entertainment, she made the decision to change her career path to become an educational counselor. Jennifer went on to get her Master’s, PPS Credential and Associate Clinical Counseling degree from Azusa Pacific University to follow her passion of working with students to become the best versions of themselves. Being a first-generation college student, she understands how important it is for students to have the support and resources in choosing a school that is right for them. In her free time, Jennifer loves to spend time with her friends and family, going on bike rides, roller skating and playing with her cat, Cleo.
Courtney Crenshaw has 20 years of experience in education as a School Psychologist and School Counselor. She comes from a family of educators that greatly value the power that a degree in higher education can offer an individual for both personal growth and professional stability. As an Educational Consultant with The College Blueprint, there is no greater reward than to guide a student to find their best fit college and help identify potential career paths. Courtney has special expertise in working with students with learning differences and unique needs and designing appropriate supports for educational success. Courtney is experienced in conducting psycho-educational assessment and supporting students' educational, mental health, and behavioral needs. She can assist students with special needs in a successful transition to higher education and obtaining appropriate accommodations. Courtney graduated from the University of California, Santa Barbara with an undergraduate degree in Sociology. She then received a Master’s Degree in Education with a Pupil Personnel Services Credential in School Counseling and School Psychology from Azusa Pacific University. More recently, Courtney completed the UCLA program for College Counseling. Courtney is thrilled to be a part of the College Blueprint team in order to provide individualized counseling services for students as they embark on one of the most exciting chapters of their lives. Courtney seeks to help students identify their strengths and individual pathways to achieve their college and career goals. Courtney is married and has twin boys, Kai and Kellan. She strives to stay active in her boys' sporting activities and enjoys participating in family outings including hiking, biking, and surfin.
Dr. Simone Hicks was born and raised in Opelika, Alabama. She is a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor and has held positions in community mental health, acute psychiatric units, disability services, and college counseling centers. Her student advocacy, holistic in nature, emphasized an individual approach to care and led the case management department to be recognized for best practices for supporting diverse students, as noted in the 2021 book entitled “The Agile College” by Nathan D. Grawe. Dr. Hicks earned a Bachelor of Science in rehabilitation services from Troy University in 2011; a Master of Science in rehabilitation counseling from Alabama State University in in 2015; and a PhD in Counselor Education and Supervision from Ohio University in 2018. Hicks is actively involved in the Commission on Rehabilitation Counselor Certification (CRCC) program, disability services organizations, Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Incorporated, and was named among Alabama State University’s 50 under 50. Hicks enjoys mentoring youth, spending time with family and friends, and traveling.
Jen Ericson earned her undergraduate degree in English from Saint Joseph's University and her M.S. in Higher Education and Counseling from Northeastern University. Jen has been working in higher education for over 20 years in a number of different capacities including admissions, academic advising, and curriculum development.
Currently, she is the Assistant Director of Pre-Health Advising at Georgetown University. Jen has also served as an adjunct faculty member at various institutions. She loves working with students through the college application process and enjoys playing a small role in student's lives as they pursue their interests and passions!
Karen Lerner is a New Jersey native who is embarking on her third career. Her first was as a modern dancer, with a BA in dance from Rutgers University and an MA in dance from New York University. Besides working with Toronto Dance Theatre, she was also a member of the dance departments at both Chapman University and the University of California, Irvine. Her second career was as a teacher at The Prentice School in Santa Ana for nine years. She then became the principal of the junior/senior high school for the next twelve. Karen holds a multiple subject and administration credential from UCI, a special education credential from Chapman, and a Slingerland Training certificate from USD. As of 2022, Karen has earned several credentials from the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing, which include an Administrative Services Credential, Specialist Instruction Credential in Special Education, and Multiple Subject Teaching Credential.
While at Prentice, Karen also was a founding board member of the New Vista School in Laguna Hills. Karen currently holds an educational therapy certificate from the University of California, Riverside. Concurrently she has begun a private practice that focuses on educational case management. In collaboration with a referring therapist, educational lawyer or school, Karen works with the student, the parent, the school counselor, the teacher, and/or the therapist. Her primary responsibility is to keep everyone in the loop as she supports the student to successfully navigate through the curriculum; thus allowing the student to remain at school. Consequently, if a student needs to transfer to another educational institution, Karen will also aid in this process.
Danielle Ticherich is originally from Cleveland, Ohio, but she moved to Southern California in 2019. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Science, and a Master of Arts in Teaching, from Muskingum University. She holds a California Single Subject Teaching Credential in Life Science, as well as an Ohio Integrated Science Teaching Credential. Currently, she serves as the Test Prep and Tutoring Coordinator, as well as an Essay Coach, for the College Blueprint. She enjoys helping students and their families navigate several different aspects of the college admissions process. Danielle also works as a paraeducator at San Clemente High School, where she gets the opportunity to help the Special Education department in a variety of ways. Danielle’s favorite part about education is building meaningful relationships with her students, and helping them reach their individual goals. In her free time, she enjoys reading, spending time outdoors, and chasing around her rambunctious toddler.
Katie Patton attended El Camino College before transferring to Cal State, Long Beach to earn BAs in English Literature and Creative Writing. She returned to Cal State, Long Beach again to earn an MA in English before starting work as an Adjunct English Instructor at Fullerton College. She is also currently a Writing tutor at El Camino College, both in their Writing Center and in classrooms, and she has previously tutored English and Writing at Long Beach City College’s Multidisciplinary Success Center as well. She enjoys helping students of all ages develop their writing and communication skills and hopes to help instill a love of writing in those she teaches and tutors, just as her teachers did for her. In her spare time, she enjoys reading, listening to music, and baking.
Rachel Sweigart is a graduate of the University of California at Santa Barbara, where she earned a bachelor's degree in Political Science. Over the years, she has worked as a firefighter/paramedic, clinical research manager, health consultant, essay coach, and author. Five of her novels have been published by Simon & Schuster and she helped her son draft a picture book that was published by Macmillan in 2020. She is a voracious reader who enjoys swimming, traveling to exotic locales, and helping college-bound seniors craft essays that capture their individuality.
Peggy Wood is a graduate of Chapman University, holding degrees in English Literature and Creative Writing. Since December of 2021, she has been employed at Irvine Valley College as a Teaching Assistant/TA or an Embedded Tutor/ET, serving in a supplemental instructional role. There she provides administrative work (setting up, managing Canvas systems, etc.); editorial and qualitative feedback on student work; assists professors with tech support and information gathering for classes; and teaches/assists in portions of the WR1, WR2, and WR2H courses on rhetorical analysis, academic writing, researching, and more. Since 2018, Peggy has worked as a freelancer in both the publishing industry and education, specializing in tutoring students to meet the standards of collegiate-level academic writing. Her professional endeavors primarily revolve around supporting others' creative and academic projects. Peggy Wood finds great joy in assisting students in achieving their desired goals and helping them get to where they want to be!
Lubabah Memon earned her BA in Political Science (magna cum laude) from UC Irvine. Not long after graduation, she began working as a copywriter at a fast-paced startup, and then as an editor at an international publishing house. Lubabah believes that everyone has a story to tell. She enjoys collaborating closely with students to find that story and share it in the most compelling manner. When she is not working, you will find her hiking, reading, and spending time with her family.
Bonnie Dinka holds a Bachelor's in English from Virginia Commonwealth University, and a Master's Degree in Education, from Portland State. She has taught academic writing, for two decades, to high schoolers and beyond. Bonnie loves being a cheerleader to writing partners and sharing tools to help organize their thoughts and make their voices shine. When not essay coaching, you can find her: swimming laps at the pool, dancing wildly in her garage, seeking out living history experiences, and/or chatting with friends.