By: Madi Taylor, Contributing Writer
CHS has welcomed a new counseling intern to the school. Ms. Laura Reilly is completing her 600-hour internship here at Centralia.
Reilly works at both the high school and intermediate school. She has already completed her 100-hour practicum at an elementary school in St. Louis. During her practicum, she observed the students and teacher in a classroom setting.
Reilly is from the St. Louis area. She was born in St. Louis, and her family almost immediately moved to Chicago after her birth, and that is where her first memories are from. During grade school, she moved back to St. Louis. Most of her growing up happened in or around the St. Louis area.
When asked what brought her to Centralia, Reilly said, “I decided after my practicum that I wanted to complete my internship at a smaller school in the area that I knew I would be moving to after graduation. Centralia was my top choice of where I wanted to intern, so I felt very fortunate when Mrs. Dickerson, Mrs. Dimmitt, and Mrs. Million said they would be willing to take on an intern.”
Reilly lives in Mexico during the week, making it easier to work at CHS and CIS. She then drives back to St. Louis every weekend to do her coursework at the University of Missouri-St. Louis.
When asked what made her choose counseling as her line of work, Reilly replied, “For me, I don’t think that it was ever really one moment that made me want to become a school counselor. I didn’t necessarily grow up thinking that I would become one; mostly because I didn’t really know this job existed and, when I found out that it existed, I had preconceived ideas of what I thought it was. I did a lot of job shadowing of professionals already in the field before I decided to become a school counselor. Through those experiences, I was able to see what a school counselor did, which really changed how I viewed the profession. I thought that it would be a great fit with my personality and skills I have developed.”
Reilly attended Duchesne High School in St. Charles. She said, “This is the same high school that my siblings went to, my mom and her siblings went to, and my maternal grandma and her siblings went to. Duchesne is a Catholic, co-educational, college preparatory. My graduating class had about 150 students, which is relatively small for St. Louis schools. My mascot for high school was the Pioneers, but the elementary school that I worked at before starting the internship was the Panther Cubs, so I felt right at home when I saw the Centralia Panthers!”
Reilly says her favorite part about being an intern in Centralia is the people. “I cannot say enough about how welcoming the staff and faculty throughout the full district have been, and I am so grateful for having such an amazing team of counselors that agreed to supervise me this semester,” she said.
Her biggest struggle is the time constraint. Reilly knew her last semester as an intern would be difficult, but she has a great team here at Centralia and at UMSL supporting her along the way.
Reilly graduates in May 2018. She plans on being a K-12 counselor in the central Missouri area.