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Another week, another honor

Prospect Mountain's Cathy Bond named New Hampshire High School Guidance Counselor of the Year

PROSPECT MOUNTAIN HIGH SCHOOL guidance counselor Cathy Bond (front) was named New Hampshire’s School Counselor of the Year during a special ceremony Monday afternoon, and shared the honor with her colleagues (back, from left to right) — Guidance Director Marilyn St. Cyr and counselors Linda Roy and Justin Carloni. Brendan Berube. (click for larger version)
April 06, 2010
ALTON — On the heels of Alton Central School teacher Joan Rees' selection as Special Education Teacher of the Year last week, officials at Prospect Mountain High School announced Monday that one of their own will also be honored at this year's statewide "EDie" Awards.

With the entire faculty and student body rising to their feet to offer her a standing ovation as she made her way to the stage, guidance counselor Cathy Bond was named School Counselor of the Year by the New Hampshire School Counselors' Association (NHSCA) during a special ceremony at the high school Monday afternoon.

Explaining that the award is given each year to an individual who exemplifies the "exceptional qualities of a guidance counselor and a human being," NHSCA President-Elect Holly Vieten marked the occasion by presenting Bond with a plaque and a bouquet of flowers.

The nominating committee, Vieten said, was convinced to recognize Bond (who she said has consistently gone above and beyond the call of duty, even offering her services as a musician to the pit orchestra for the school's recent spring musical, "Godspell") this year when it received a testimonial from one of her students — something it rarely sees.

"In a matter of minutes, Mrs. Bond had managed to help me see things I had spent weeks trying to find myself," the student wrote. "Mrs. Bond is deserving of this honor not simply for what she does, but because of who she is."

Although she was deeply moved by the honor, Bond insisted on sharing it with her colleagues in the Guidance office, as well as the faculty and administration at the high school.

"This is so reflective of the team spirit here, and the collaborative culture that we have," she said, adding that she "wouldn't be here" without the support of her colleagues.

"We have a shared function here," she said, explaining that the award was, for her, a demonstration of how well teachers, counselors, and administrators work together at Prospect Mountain to put students on the right path.

"The kids are well taken care of by a professional, dedicated staff," she added.

Bond said she also appreciates the support offered by local parents.

As a mother of two herself, she said she empathizes with the tough situations that parents sometimes find themselves in, and joins them in recognizing the challenges of life in high school.

"That's another piece of something like this," she said.

Prospect Mountain is "still small enough to really make a difference," she went on, adding that she hoped the award would call attention to the "ongoing, everyday effort" among the high school's staff to give students the personal attention they need inside and outside the classroom.

"We get so much right here, and it's nice to pause and celebrate that as a community," she said. "[The award is] much appreciated, and I think it will be a catalyst for people to reflect upon that."

Brendan Berube can be reached at 569-3126 or bberube@salmonpress.com

Martin Lord Osman
Varney Smith
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