As a licensed school counselor, the responsibility to help students become a better version of themselves while staying on the right track is huge. For Ashlee Cabral, it comes naturally to help her students succeed.
“As a counselor, I wear many hats. I am a listener, an educator, a problem solver, and practically the middle man for all things challenging and anxiety-inducing. Relationship building with my students is my top priority, and I’ve loved the connections I’ve made while watching these students grow into who they are,” she outlines her experience as a counselor. “I think it’s important to get students thinking realistically about their future and how what they’re doing on a daily basis can help them get to where they want to be.”
Growing up in Rhode Island, Ashlee loves to cook, travel, try out new cuisine, and play sports like volleyball. She has a younger brother and comes from a non-traditional family.
Ashlee works at Millbury Public Schools, Massachusetts, assisting middle and high school students. She earned a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and Justice Studies from the University of Hampshire and a Master’s degree in School Counseling from Assumption College.
As someone who has spent the majority of her life working with children, Ashlee understands their needs and the difficulties that may arise. She has been counseling kids for 3 years and has been working with Neuron Education since the Summer of 2021.
“Building confidence in students is one of my main priorities,” she discusses how she was able to do so with one of her students at Neuron Education who has ADHD, the student developed a positive outlook toward school activities and learning. She continued, “When a student believes in themselves and knows that someone else believes in them, they can be unstoppable.”
Ashlee begins her lessons by learning more about her students. “I love to start by building some basic rapport. Getting to know the student in terms of what they like to do outside of school, what kind of TV/movies they like, what music they listen to, and so on. I often like to start and end the meeting off with something light-hearted like a game to break the ice,” she says.
Her counseling generally involves guiding students toward their own conclusions, helping them in making decisions based on school and college, encouraging social skills, and fostering problem-solving, troubleshooting, and crisis-management abilities.
“I face challenges with students in my career as a school counselor each day.” she elaborates on the challenges she may have faced with her students and how she resolved them. “I believe the biggest thing we can do as tutors or mentors is remaining impartial and simply listen to their concerns. By doing so, and asking reflective questions, that will hopefully lead the student to their own action plan of how to solve their challenges which in turn will promote resilience and self-determination.”
Cabral hopes to excel more this year by taking on more challenges and helping students with social and emotional learning. She shared her long-term goals for the future as wanting to “Spread a culture of positivity around learning and challenging situations and expand the growth mindset for youth around the world.”