COLLEGE STATION —“He is an outstanding counselor. He is the best.” Glenda Lopez said.
“Mr. Avritt is amazing and has always made sure my kids are taken care of,” Jessica Steele said.
“He was my daughter’s counselor when she was in school,” Darryl Clark said. “Well deserved.”
Those are just a few of the comments from parents and colleagues when they learned Copperas Cove High School counselor John Avritt was selected for Texas A&M University’s Very Important Counselor Award.
Avritt received multiple congratulatory messages and comments — all conveying the same sense of admiration and respect.
“I was honored and humbled. It’s something that I never expected, and I’m not quite sure how to thank everyone,” Avritt said. “I have been a counselor for five years, and the most rewarding part is seeing students accomplish great things that make them happy. When they are proud, so am I. The challenging part is convincing the students that they can achieve more than they realize.”
Avritt was nominated by Melissa Morris, the Texas A&M recruiter for the Copperas Cove area.
“My job is to get our kids as many opportunities to meet college recruiters as possible. Melissa and Texas A&M have been great partners with CCHS and are always willing to come to the campus and meet with interested students,” Avritt said.
“I simply made sure our doors were constantly open to her so she can meet our great students. Part of that is having a college fair, part is calling her when we have a student that needs more information or has a question. (Texas A&M) has so many great programs and although it is a very large school, the staff works very hard to make their school feel like a small community.”
The Very Important Counselor Award recognizes the outstanding service and important work of high school counselors, teachers, and personnel in guiding students on the path to college. Only a select few are chosen for the program, said Lynn Barnes Jr., TAMU director of recruitment.
Avritt was honored on the TAMU campus at dinner, where he received his award from TAMU Vice President of Academic Affairs Scott McDonald. For Avritt, though, it’s not about the plaque or the recognition. It’s about caring for students.
“For counselors, it’s more than just graduation rates or who goes to college. School counselors do so much more than can ever get measured,” Avritt said. “Every student has such a variety of different needs. My job is try my hardest to meet all of those needs so that all students feel like they had someone here looking out for their best interests. And, hopefully, along the way, they can say they accomplished something here that lead to something even greater.”