Betsy Perez

MA Counseling, specialization in School Counseling with Pupil Personnel Services Credential

About Me

I am originally from Northeast Los Angeles. I moved to Hartford, CT to attend Trinity College in 2006 and graduated in 2010 with a BA in Political Theory with minors in Writing and Public Policy. Following graduation, I thought I would be bound for law school, but I took a teaching fellowship through AmeriCorps instead. I moved to Oakland, CA to teach in an extended day learning program for 6th graders where I was in charge of family and student engagement in the program. I had a small stint at San Francisco State University where I took one semesters worth of courses toward a MA in Political Theory, but I couldn’t stay away from education. So, in 2014 I moved to San Diego to start the school counseling program at USD!

When did you begin your program, and when do you anticipate completing it?

I began my graduate program in September 2014 and I plan on completing my degree in May of 2016.

Tell us about any internships, graduate asssitantships, student teaching, practicum or fieldwork you have done through SOLES. Where did you work, what did you do, and how did it impact you?

In the Spring of 2015, I fulfilled my practicum requirement at e3 Civic High School in Downtown San Diego. e3 was a wonderful experience where I learned what it truly meant to be a flexible counselor. I am currently serving at Innovation Middle School (aka iMiddle) in Clairemont for my Counseling Intern fieldwork experience. I absolutely love the culture of achievement at iMiddle! I have also been working as a Counseling Coach at Montgomery Middle School in Linda Vista since January of 2015. My position at Montgomery is a graduate work study job through the Mulvaney Center for Community Awareness and Social Action (CASA). Due to my continued work at Montgomery, I will finish my graduate experience at USD with basically double the hours of experience at the middle school level; making me a more competitive candidate for employment after graduating. 

Have you completed an international experience? What did you do?

I recently completed an international experience in Jamaica! The experience was part of my coursework in Multicultural Counseling and Career Counseling. While in Jamaica, I worked with young adults, getting them prepared for their next steps in college and career. I also had the opportunity to visit a girls’ group home to gain multicultural competency. 

What do you hope to do with your degree and/or credential, and why?

I plan to work in middle school in the larger Los Angeles area. Middle school is such a pivotal time in the life of students; I want to help them navigate their personal and academic choices to see them become life-long learners. I also hope to seek out a non-profit college access program so that I can also work with low-income high-achieving students.