HHS Counselor Ellen Okada Receives State FFA Award
BY ALFREDO GUZMAN
Ellen Okada has been a counselor at Holtville High School for seven years. Her primary responsibility is to track each student for high school graduation. Additionally, she is responsible with assisting them with their post-secondary educational plans.
Students who stray off-track for graduation receive additional attention to ensure they are successful. She received her Counseling Credential in 1995.
At the beginning of her career Mrs. Okada said, “Even though my official job title was ‘Teacher’ I was using my counseling skills more than my teaching skills because I was teaching Alternative Education-Pregnant and Parenting Teens for Riverside County Office of Education. Also, the skills came in handy when I taught at Holtville Middle School.”
In October 2015 Mrs. Okada received The Frank Jonasson Endowment Award. This award is, “In recognition for outstanding service preparing high school students from Imperial County for higher education.”
In March 2016 she was recognized by FFA with a Silver Award and as Imperial Section Star Counselor. In March 2017 she was honored to receive from FFA, a Gold Award and Imperial Section Star Counselor once again, as well as CA Southern Region Star Counselor.
The process for receiving the FFA award starts with students doing the nomination and going through the application and interview process.
When asked to elaborate Okada said, “Ask them – I have no idea; I just show up where they tell me. FFA student Ricardo Medina was interviewed in Fresno for the State Award.”
Mrs. Okada added, “I am truly honored to be held in such high esteem with the students. I am grateful for each recognition I have received.”