How has the pandemic affected your counseling sessions with students?
“The pandemic has affected it tremendously because it is much more difficult to get ahold of students via Zoom since they have to have a computer and access to the Zoom link. It was much easier at school, when you could just ask a secretary or teacher to send the student up to the office to see their counselors.”
What questions do most students ask you as a counselor?
“How do I access my Canvas, how do I see my assignments or how do I get in touch with my teacher?”
What was your greatest achievement as a counselor?
“I do not have exactly one, but it warms my heart to see my students graduate and move onto the next step of their life.”
What type of movie genres do you like to watch?
“I like mystery but I do not like gory movies. I also definitely enjoy romance, as long as it is not too corny.”
What are your favorite foods to eat?
“Crunchy tacos with beef and chicken, those are my favorite. I can eat tacos every single day..”
Why did you take interest in counseling high school students?
“I previously worked in a group home setting for high school students. I found that I really enjoyed supporting students and helping them see the possibilities that existed after high school and realize that, despite the circumstances, their future could be anything they choose to make it.”
How long have you been at Glen A. Wilson counseling students?
“ I have been a counselor at Wilson since 2007.”
What advice would you give to the students at Glen A. Wilson during this time?
“I would encourage students, all of us really, to stay positive and remember that being happy all the time doesn’t mean pretending that everything is great. It just means that even when things are hard, you know there are better times to come.”
If you could be anywhere right now, where would you be and why?
“I feel like I should say Wilson, but I do love sleeping in, so being home is actually pretty good for me!”
How do you stay productive during the pandemic?
“I do my best to bug everyone with lots of email and announcements and really enjoyed more webinars than I was before. I like to work in my yard and play games with my kids. Also Netflix – maybe not productive, but we all need to take some time to relax!”
As you assist students during the college applications process, what is one piece of advice you always tell your students?
“Take the time to get to know yourself. Know what is important to you and why. How do you want to contribute to the world? What are your natural talents and skills? College is a time to learn, grow and prepare for a future career. There are thousands of careers. Do your research! Most people spend 40 or more hours a week at work. It is so much more enjoyable if you are doing something that plays to your skills and talents.”
What is the hardest part about being a counselor?
“I believe that anyone in a helping profession must learn to balance the desire to help others with their own self-care. Counseling can take an emotional toll because you are helping others in the face of some very stressful situations. It can be easy to forget to take care of yourself, or put your own needs aside, but you need to find balance to be at your best for your students.”
What responsibilities do you take on as a counselor?
“ Speaking broadly, we are here to help support students as they develop academic, social-emotional and career skills. What that looks like on a day-to-day basis might be different. We might be presenting in the classroom, attending a College Conference, collaborating with other counselors, meeting with students and their families. We are here to help students as they make progress toward graduation and develop a post-secondary plan after high school.”
Have you ever tried any extreme sports?
“I have not. Instead, I like to travel. I have gone on the safari and swam with sharks in South Africa. I have gone swimming in a bioluminescent bay in Puerto Rico and a swamp tour in New Orlean where I was able to hold a baby crocodile. So, I get my adventure by traveling the world.”
What is something you are looking forward to this weekend?
“I am looking forward to getting some rest this weekend. February is a very busy month for counselors. We are in the middle of the registration season for next school year so it will be nice to go outside and get some fresh air and take care of some personal chores I have been neglecting.”
Not present: Nancy Valenzuela