Mansfield helps to guide students to success through connections
Tres Mansfield began working in the student support office as an intern on January 29, just after the second semester started. Mansfield is currently studying at Mount Mary University, where he will graduate in August with a Master’s degree in science and counseling.
Halfway through his high school career, Mansfield moved from Tallahassee, Florida to the North Shore area and graduated from Homestead High School.
“[After] I graduated, I went to UW-Milwaukee and graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in psychology, and I have a minor in sign language and a certificate in childhood and adolescent studies,” Mansfield said. “From there, I started working at Atwater Elementary as an instructional aide [before] I applied to graduate school.”
Mansfield wanted to go into counseling because of the impact his academic counselors made on his high school career.
“When I was in high school, I wasn’t the best student. For me, the thing that actually got me into college was a lot of pupil services members. My assistant principal at the time, my counselors, my academic counselor, the social worker, those individuals really put a lot of work into helping me get my grades and my application to a point where I got accepted to a university,” Mansfield said. “When I was going through my freshman and sophomore years of college, I didn’t really know what I wanted to do. I started doing some volunteer work with kids and I learned that I really like working with young individuals, so that influenced me to be where I am now.”
Before coming to SHS, Mansfield spent the previous semester at the intermediate school. This will be his third year working in the district, but he had volunteered at the high school as a senior in his undergraduate program as a peer mentor.
In the student support department, Mansfield is working with both school counselors, Sarah Johansson and Molly Norris, on preparing for ACT and AP testing, making sure juniors and seniors have enough credits to graduate and whatever else the department needs.
“There are a lot of things coming up [such as the ACT and AP testing] where having an extra person who is ready and willing to help will come in handy, not only for Mrs. Norris and I, but for all of the students here,” Johansson said. “He is really eager to help and eager to learn, so we consider him an asset here with us.”
Additionally, Mansfield is meeting individually with students and providing academic help through a study skills group.
“We had him focus on some of our struggling students, especially our ninth graders who are still transitioning to the high school,” Norris said. “I think he can relate really well … being that he’s fresh out of school.”
Mansfield is excited to see the students he has gotten to know do well.
“I’m looking forward to seeing those individuals who I’ve been seeing or those individuals who are ready to graduate being successful,” Mansfield said. “High school is a big transition time for a lot of people, so as long as we get everyone to successfully make that transition, I’m very happy.”
Although he is only in the student support office part-time, Mansfield wants to continue to get to know students.
“So far, there are a few students that I feel I’ve been able to connect with on a good academic level. Obviously, the school is quite large, and I’m only here a couple times a week, so it’s difficult to get out to as many students as I can … I try to go and meet students in whatever way possible,” Mansfield said.
According to both Norris and Johansson, Mansfield’s willingness to help is a great resource for students who are looking for support.
“I’m not really afraid to talk to you about anything. It doesn’t really matter what the issue is; if you come to me I’m not going to be judgmental about it, I’m not going to dog you about it, I’m not going to do any of that,” Mansfield said. “My whole purpose is to help you through whatever situation it is and I want everyone to feel as comfortable as possible with me …Whatever the situation is, I want to help with it.”
“I think everyone who hasn’t met Mr. Mansfield should stop in and say ‘hi,’” said Molly Loucks, student support secretary. “He’s a pretty awesome guy, so you should get to know him.”
In his free time, Mansfield said that he enjoys playing ultimate Frisbee and is a youth volunteer for Milwaukee Ultimate Club. He also enjoys disc golf and long boarding.
by Maeve McKaig