The state’s Elementary Counselor of the Year for 2011 LOVES (that’s in capital letters!) her job and her students.
Title: Elementary Counselor, NBCC, NCC
Now resides in: Greenwood
Degree: M.A., school guidance and counseling
Family: Married 26 years to Captain Scott Rothell of the Shreveport Fire Department; three sons: MA3 Dustin Rothell, U.S. Navy stationed at Bangor Naval Base, Silverdale, Wash.; Dylan Rothell, biology major at Louisiana Tech; Dakota Rothell, sophomore at C.E. Byrd in Shreveport.
Degree and Year: 2006 M.A. in School Guidance & Counseling
Tell us a bit about what a day is like for you: First, let me say I LOVE my job! I serve with an amazing principal, instructional coordinator, awesome teachers and staff. Riverside (in Shreveport) is an amazing school! My day starts by greeting the students as they arrive on campus -- welcomes, hugs, and support, especially for those starting off with rough mornings. I want each child to have a positive experience at school daily! Each day, I do a morning segment called “Counselor’s Corner” on our school television show called KRAM. I make announcements and teach a quick character lesson for our Character Word of the Week. Guidance lessons are taught in each classroom twice a month. The lessons are designed to meet the needs of our students as determined by a student-needs survey that I do at the beginning of the year. We address topics such as bullying, career awareness, social skills and academic success. I am available to students for individual counseling and group counseling. Lunch duty is quite fun for me, because it allows me to interact with the students daily. I also serve as the PBIS facilitator, which is our positive behavior program, School Building Level Committee chairperson, testing coordinator … and many other responsibilities familiar to all teachers.
Why did you get involved in counseling, specifically at the school level? I served as a middle school science teacher for 11 years in both public and private schools. Middle school students are interesting people! While I loved teaching the curriculum and fostering a love for science, my absolute favorite part of the job was helping kids who were struggling with personal situations that affected them at school. Supporting kids whose moms had breast cancer or brain cancer, the students who were physically abused, students who didn’t quite have the social skills to help them survive middle school, and a host of other problems. My hope in becoming a school counselor was to hear the children and be the voice for hurting kids. By moving into the elementary area, I hope to make a difference during the foundational years of development. I am in this position to make a difference in the lives of children!
What brought you to Tech: A coworker encouraged me to check out the program after he completed it. After much research, and after considering my past experience with Project Life at Tech, I was impressed with the academics and the atmosphere.
Where do you see yourself in five years? Ten years? My hope in the next five years is to help facilitate change in the area of school counseling for the state of Louisiana. Louisiana has developed and adopted the American School Counseling Association model for school counseling. The LaSCM is a systematic developmental program for students to address the academic, personal/social, and career awareness areas for students. In 10 years I hope to continue to impact the lives of students through my job and by supporting counselors across north Louisiana and the state. It is hard for me to imagine doing anything different than what I do now, because I love my job so much. However, should the door open for me to impact student lives and other counselors in a greater capacity, I am willing.
Your best memories of Tech: I definitely have instructors who will never be forgotten. Dr. Ernie Cowger, Dr. Mark Miller and Dr. Walt Buboltz have provided me with knowledge and techniques that I use daily in my job. The family atmosphere on both the main campus and Tech-Barksdale campus is amazing! It is supportive and nurturing to the students, which is not something that can be found on every college campus.
Your advice to Tech graduate school students today: Embrace the experience and get all that Tech has to offer! Interact with your professors and your peers. Everyone has something to offer to your experience: absorb it and use it!
“If there’s one thing I’ve learned, it’s”… that my success is my responsibility. I cannot wait on other people to do for me what I have the knowledge, skills and tools to do for myself. This is something that I hope to impart to those whose paths cross mine.How did Tech prepare you for your career and, in general, life after college: The knowledge foundation and application aspects of my time at Tech gave me confidence that I could not only do the job, but also truly impact students’ lives in a positive way.