Unsung Heroes: Mrs. An

Nathan Guo, Staff Writer

For many of us students, our most influential figures in our lives are our teachers, our parents, our friends. These are the people we see, we talk to, we smile with on a daily basis. These people shape us into who we are and provide us with goals on what we want to be. There are others, however. Those that work just as hard behind the scenes to make our education and our lives possible. Those that we may never see in our lifetimes, or those we see so often that they melt into the background. Those unsung heroes.

An unsung hero vital to the community of AHS is one of its counselors, Mrs. An. She first discovered her passion in counseling in her first job after college as a Behavior Therapist who helped children with Autism and other disabilities. She “enjoyed the job immensely, enjoyed building connections with the children, and found joy contributing to their progress”. Because of this experience, she decided that she wanted to pursue this career path further, and in a few years, found her way to AHS as a high school counselor.

As a counselor, Mrs. An aids students in whatever troubles they may have. She provides guidance not only for immediate problems, but also works with students to resolve any long term issues they may have. These issues can range anywhere from a GPA on the decline to a disagreement at home. Furthermore, Mrs. An also works to ensure that students who do not perform well in school or do not speak English as their first language can succeed in high school and after graduation.

Another important role Mrs. An plays is in the graduation of the school’s students. From as early as grade nine, she introduces prospective jobs, requirements for graduation, and post-graduation education deviant from the traditional four year college. She gives advice on what classes to take for certain majors in college as well as careers in the real world. Her work with students on colleges doesn’t just stop there. Mrs. An also contributes to the planning of college visits to campus and helps students out on the college application process. Applications, college requirements, essays, and recommendation letters are all areas Mrs. An is knowledgeable in.

In her line of work, Mrs. An believes that each counselor has their own qualities that make them effective counselors. However, she does believe that it is integral to be compassionate, as being compassionate really sets the tone for a collaborative and supportive relationship. She also believes that being a patient and attentive listener is important as well.

Mrs. An is one of those people; unsung heroes who we rarely interact with but help us so much in our lives. Without counselors like her, many of us would be unsure and ignorant of how to even get through high school, much less college. We, as students, should very much be appreciative of Mrs. An and her dedication to ensure our success. Unsung? Yes. A hero? Undoubtedly.