The Right Guidance for College and Career Success: Maximizing Your Educational Investment

Our Mission

To help college-bound students find their direction
by assessing the whole person, exploring path options,
and securing financial aid so they can create a fulfilling career and life.

Just as an athlete needs a solid coach, your student needs someone who knows the fundamentals and the “rules of the game” when it comes to entering college after high school or re-entering the educational system later in life. The ForwarDirections team consists of experienced professional educators and college admissions specialists. We know the game, and can give your student the tools they need to compete, and win.

We are two lifelong California educators who believe that all students need the right guidance to determine their direction after high school. Together, we officially launched ForwarDirections in 2015 as a non-profit organization to build a network of students via online tools to share, discuss, and collaborate about their future directions.

No matter your age, ForwarDirections is ready to support you with ongoing college and career guidance. Every person involved can benefit from the professional guidance provided by a ForwarDirections independent educational coach. We believe that our services benefit students, parents, school counselors, and anyone else seeking college and career guidance.

Rob and Carole are both certified College Admissions Counselors,
receiving their training at the University of California Riverside.

Rob Darrow

Rob Darrow, Ed.D.
College Admissions Counseling Certificate

Rob has worked in California public education for 33 years as an online high school principal, district librarian, and teacher before moving into the world of consulting to help colleges and school districts implement online and blended learning programs. His research interests include career coaching, teacher effectiveness, online and blended learning, and school libraries. He is passionate about coaching students and adults as part of the ForwarDirections network. Rob lives in Santa Cruz, California.

Carole Smoot

Carole Smoot, M.A.
College Admissions Counseling Certificate

Carole is a lifelong educator having served as an elementary, intermediate, high school, and Advanced Placement teacher in California public schools for 37 years and is now a part-time professor at the university level. During that time, she coached History Day, Academic Decathlon, drama, and had the pleasure of guiding numerous students in their completion of successful college applications. She is passionate about students of all ages and the opportunity to help them discover and pursue their futures through the ForwarDirections network. Carole lives in Fresno, California.