Ashlee Valsin — School Counselor
Ashlee Valsin earned her M.Ed. in School Counseling from Lamar University online. She works as a school counselor for Houston ISD in Texas.
"This degree has opened doors for me to do what I love. I love counseling and working with students and their families. I have the opportunity to touch lives every day."
Job Title and School District:
School Counselor, Houston ISD
How has this degree affected your professional outlook? What about personally?
Professionally, this degree has opened doors for me to do what I love. I love counseling and working with students and their families. I have the opportunity to touch lives every day. Personally, my heart is full and I am deeply satisfied with the work I do each day. Being able to help students academically, socially, and emotionally is very rewarding.
What was your single biggest takeaway from the program?
When I was thinking about going back to school, I had so many doubts. I didn't know if I would be able to afford it or be able to "get back in the swing" of being in school after several years. However, Lamar University was such a pleasant experience for me. The program was affordable and I excelled in every class. I enjoyed it so much, I enrolled again in the certificate program to work towards becoming a LPC. I learned from my experience at Lamar to step out on faith and follow your dreams and everything will fall in place.
How much time per week did you spend on your studies?
12 to 18 hours.
Describe how having an online option made a degree more accessible for you.
Having an online option gave me the opportunity to access my degree without having to physically go to class. This was so helpful because at the time I was working a demanding full-time job.
What was one of the biggest challenges during the program, and how did you overcome it?
The biggest challenge for me was juggling the practicum and working full-time. I had to take off many days to get my hours. Though the practicum was a stressful 11 weeks, I had a wonderful professor and was able to get through it.
Why did you choose to earn your advanced degree from Lamar University?
I chose Lamar because it was affordable and I had a couple friends who successfully went through the program and had great things to say about it.
What advice would you give to a prospective student who is considering this program?
Go for it! It is worth the sacrifice. You will enjoy great professors and a wonderful learning experience!
What helped you get through the program the most? What helped you make it to the finish line?
Great professors! Determination to not give up helped me make it across the finish line.
Describe your family's thoughts and feelings about you earning your degree.
They were very proud of me!
If you could do it all over again, what would you do differently?
I wouldn't do anything differently!