Justin Ferguson, a counselor at Westerville South High School, has been named a 2021 BASE Education winner of National School Counselor Week. He is one of three winners across the country.
Intervention specialist Candice Bartlett nominated Ferguson for the honor due to his ability to connect with students from different backgrounds and empathize with parents when they are feeling most vulnerable.
“Justin Ferguson may not be winning awards that earn him the spotlight on the news or trips to our nation’s capital, but what he is doing here at Westerville South High School, is changing the way that many have viewed relationships with other staff, students, and parents,” she wrote. “He has empowered many to find their voices in a healthy way. To find the strength to share experiences in a way that brings them to life. A life that they may not have felt they ever had a chance of or could not envision.”
Ferguson said it is an amazing honor to be recommended for the national recognition, but a nomination from an educator he has great respect for has made the award more special.
“Candi has always been a pleasure to work with, as she's a great teammate,” he said. “She authentically builds meaningful relationships with students and staff and she's exemplary in her role. Candi shares my passion for helping young people to maximize their abilities in an academic setting, and so I'm very grateful for her.”
National Counseling Recognition Week runs Feb. 1 to Feb. 5 and is designed to raise awareness on the contributions school counselors can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career. BASE Education develops evidence-based social-emotional learning (SEL) courseware.