New counselor, Amber Mitchell, earns Best 2019 Counselor from SEMO


Elena Martin, Staff Reporter

New counselor, Amber Mitchell, has recently earned an award for the best 2019 counselor from Southeast Missouri State University (SEMO). 

The SEMO best counselor award is an award given to a counselor based on how well they interact with their students along with how well the students improve by seeing that counselor. 

Mitchell’s job is to work with high school students to develop ways to help them achieve goals post-high school. 

“I understand that success does not happen in a straight line and even when you have a plan, life does not always respect the plan you have created,” Mitchell said.  “If we do not meet the milestones as planned, it can be very frustrating at times and we may have the desire to give up in those moments”.

Helping create an environment to succeed and making a plan on how you will succeed is Mitchell’s job. 

“I noticed it was not enough to get students to the next phase [of life],” Mitchell said. “Students started to tell me how much my guidance was still needed beyond high school”.

Mitchell believes getting an award is a very different experience than just going to an award ceremony. 

“Being able to see it through another lens was definitely different. I enjoyed the ceremony immensely and the attention I received took some getting used to but once I got over it I really started to enjoy myself.  Receiving the actual award was completely nerve-wracking but thankfully the entire process was over in a matter of moments and I was finally able to relax fully,” Mitchell said.

This award meant so much to Mitchell not because she was being recognized but it answered the question she always wondered. Is she making a difference in her students’ lives. 

“Receiving this award, to me, was confirmation that I am on the right track in terms of doing what is best for my students. As an educator I often wonder am I doing what is best for my students, am I really making a difference? Am I really addressing the needs of the students?  But for someone else to see the work I am doing and deemed it worthy enough to get rewarded for it, to me means that I must be doing something right,” Mitchell said.