FIVE QUESTIONS: Bethney Salmon, BCMS Counselor
Prologue: In recognition of National School Counseling Week this week, Beech Tree News caught up with Bethney Salmon, new guidance counselor at Butler County Middle School. New to the counseling ranks this year, Salmon
1. Tell us a little about yourself. How long have you been in education? In what areas have you taught?
"I spent 10 years in the classroom teaching music, everything from P-8, general music, choir, and band. I also worked with a high school marching band for 6 years. The last two years I did a counseling internship alongside teaching. I went to WKU for my graduate studies in school counseling. I received my Masters, Rank 1, and met all requirements for my LPCA licensure in the program at WKU."
2. Why did you go into school counseling?
"When I taught middle school band and choir I really found a passion for helping my students navigate the social/emotional part of their day. I was able to build great rapport with students in my classroom but often referred students out to the school counselor for extra support. I determined at that time that I would love to be in that counseling position one day to be able to focus on student support daily."
3. How valuable is the position of school counselor to the overall process of education?
"The school counselor is a vital part of the education process. School counselors support students in many aspects in their school day and cover social/emotional needs, academic needs, and career/college/tech school planning. In order for students to be ready to learn each day at school they need basic needs and mental health needs to be tended to and met. As a school counselor I feel very lucky to get to be involved in the education process in this capacity. We are very fortunate here in Butler County to have school counselors in each building."
4. What have you found to be the most rewarding part of being a school counselor? The most challenging?
"When I see a student begin to self-advocate, use proper coping skills to work through tough situations, and reach goals it makes it all worth it. This is what gives me energy to work hard to empower students each day at school. The most challenging part are the heavy days. I never know what will walk through my office door and some days are emotionally heavy."
5. What advice would you give to those educators who may be interested in pursuing school counseling?
"School counseling is very rewarding and is definitely a passion. I was really blessed to be part of a very hands on graduate program for my counseling degrees. I highly recommend a hands on approach that provides quality experience leading into the career. I'm always available to chat with anyone looking to move in this direction."
Postscript: Bethney is orginally from Paducah and did her undergraduate work at Murray State University. She is married and has two kids, a girl who is 3 and a boy that is 10-months old. They have a dog named Mermaid. As a family they love to travel and their favorite spot is Miami, where some of her family live. Some of her favorite ways to enjoy free time are running, swimming and shopping.
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5 Questions with BTN is a feature news story that will be posted periodically. It will feature interviews with interesting people in the community. Feedback? Ideas for future interviews? Let us know at [email protected].