Features 3/1/11

Students can decompress with SAP adviser help

By Rachel Huebert
Roar Reporter

Many schools throughout the nation have student advisers of sorts, and LHS is no exception. Kara Yegge, who is employed by Sierra County for the Student Assistance Program,  devotes her time to helping out students at LHS.. Whereas other Sierra County counselors and advisers work in the Sierra County building downtown, Yegge’s office is on the LHS campus in room 104. Yegge said that  “in a technical sense, I get referrals from the teachers about students who struggle academically, emotionally, and are just struggling period. I talk to parents about helping their students.” She also gives presentations about students and suicide preventions.

After returning home to the Sierra Valley, she worked on getting a bachelor’s degree online. She worked with local family resources while attaining her master’s degree in marriage, child, and family therapy. After last year’s tragedies took place here at LHS, she said she wanted to help the students. Unlike the traditional adult stereotype, she said she remembers what it’s like to be a teen in high school. She recalls  struggling to fit in while also trying to meet the high expectations of family, teachers and coaches.

Yegge said she knows the stress and difficulties students face. “Giving kids a safe place to be themselves, without feeling like they have to fit the mold everyone wants them to” is what she’s all about. After seeing families and students struggle and knowing how important it is for students to have a venting outlet, she wants to help. With all of the stress from sports, school work, family and just being a teen, Yeggie said that she understands that sometimes all a student needs is to vent.

When asked about what personal qualities are needed for the job, she replied that one has to be open minded and has to able to listen without judgment. She also said that it’s important to be empathetic, because so many people make such a huge deal about feeling alone. She noted that knowing someone else understands how they feel helps. Growing up in the Sierra Valley and attending this very high school, Yegge remembers what it felt like to be s student and even relates to many of the things she heard about. Some of the most common issues are family, stress at home and problems at school.

She commented that there may still be students who are apprehensive about talking to her. She said wants the students to know that she offers her office as “a safe place, completely confidential. You can vent about anything and it stays in here.” She went on to explain that it’s “a good place to decompress. As long as the door is unlocked, it’s yours.”

With a smile and confident nod she added, “I don’t bite.”


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