TIANA REID, Dean of Students/Counseling Department
Q: What do you do here at Wakefield High School?
A: I am the dean of students, I do carry a caseload, but I am over student services. My caseload is not quite as big; I do the students that are in virtual, I do mid-year grads, and right now I am filling for our counselor that is not here, but she will be here in October.
Q: What are you liking about wakefield so far?
A: I was at wakefield about 5 years ago as a regular academic counselor, and I loved it when I was here. When I was looking to make a change where I was, I saw that Wakefield had a counselor position open, and I was so excited. Mr. Bazell and I worked together back in the days of East Wake High School, so I kind of knew him before. I just love it here [at Wakefield High], I love the spirit of the community, I love the students, the teachers are extremely supportive, everyone is so nice, so I was really excited to come back here.
Q: What does your typical workday look like?
A: I wish I could tell you a typical day, but school counselors never have a typical day. I have a to-do list as long as my arm, but I usually get one or two things done. A typical day would be, come in and get acclimated to all the emails I have. But also, right now for example, it depends on the season that we’re in. I am doing senior conferences right now, so I have those except for third period, and then in the middle of the other day, a student was having a panic attack, so I had to put things in a different place and stop what I was doing; I have to be willing to switch up everything in a moment, which is fine, I have been doing it for 20 years. I think if it was any other way, I would be bored. Lots of things I do are check transcripts, talk to students about college planning, right now especially with seniors. I do have students with social and emotional needs, I work with students a lot about mindfulness, which is a good thing for anxiety and a lot of times I’m just that person that will point [students] in the right direction if they don’t know anything. I would dare to say that there is not a typical day in school in the world of a school counselor.
Q: Tell me about your educational background.
A: I have a bachelor’s in science and criminal justice; I didn’t really know what I wanted to do with that. I ended up working with people that have disabilities and working in vocational rehabilitation. Then I ended up working in the corporate world at Capital One, which is a bank. I did credit card investigations for fraud. I didn’t like that, I wanted to go back into a non-profit, public sector so I ended up taking a couple of graduate classes when I was living in Richmond, and loved it, so I went into school counseling when I was around 30. I have my master’s in school counseling.
Q: What do you like to do in your free time?
A: I love to read, I also enjoy being outside; gardening, kayaking, swimming, fishing. I am kind of an outdoorsy person. Then I [also] love taking naps when I have a chance.
Q: To finish up, do you have any advice for students that go here?
A: What I always want students to understand is that high school is a very small part of their whole journey. I think sometimes students make decisions in high school that they may regret later. In fact, one time when I was working at East Wake, my seniors wanted me to go with them to the ninth-grade classroom to talk to them about how important it is to create a record of yourself on your transcript, and academically to carry with them forward. But, the other side of that coin is that If you didn’t do what you wanted to do as you got older in high school, you’re so young, you have a way to get where you want to go. For example, I didn’t have the greatest G.P.A. in high school, but [now] I have a master’s degree. You just never know what opportunity will present themselves, so I always say keep your eyes open and keep moving forward because there are things waiting for you out there that you need to pay attention to so that when they come to you, you can take advantage of them