Jacob Amaro trailblazes in new position as CTE, EL counselor


Isabella Prewitt

Jacob Amaro works hard at his desk sending schedule emails and communicating with students. “I like the influence I am able to have and that is what got me interested in pursuing counseling,” Amaro said.

Isabella Prewitt, Section Editor

Jacob Amaro looks up from his computer and greets me with a bright smile as I enter his office, filled with California Lutheran University paraphernalia and photos of his family and friends. He is eager to leave a positive mark as the new CTE, Invention, EL Counselor.

Amaro has been navigating his brand new position at Buena where he plans to help every student strive for their best. By becoming a part of the Buena community and learning how to connect with and understand students, Amaro is determined to aide this campus into becoming a better place.

CTE, thes Career and Technical Education program, provides funding and organizes pathways in order to help students learn real world skills.

While the Invention program is mainly focused on supporting hands-on classes, here are a wide range of English learners in our Buena community. Amaro helps run the EL, or English Learner, program to create an accessible learning environment for new English learners.

As a Foothill Dragon alum turned Buena Bulldog, Amaro started his education at Ventura College where he bounced from business to health services and finally found his footing in sociology. After V.C., Amaro traveled to Cal Lutheran University where he studied abroad in Granada, Spain

“[Granada] was the highlight of my college career,” Amaro said.

Amaro has also been a soccer coach here at Buena for over six years and hopes to coach again this year. Amaro said this was part of the reason he wanted to work at Buena since he already knew some staff, students, and parents. Amaro’s previous connection to the school has helped him assimilate better.

“I did six seasons here . . . and I just felt connected to the school in that aspect,” Amaro said.

While Amaro is currently excelling in his position as a school counselor, it was not his original career path. When he was coaching alongside Shaun Strople, now Athletic Director, he realized counseling was his dream job. Amaro saw fellow counselor David Vallejo down on the field and grew curious.

“I remember [Mr. Strople] said ‘He’s a counselor and coach down here too,’ And I’m like, ‘I want to do something like that,’” Amaro said.

Amaro did in fact take over for Vallejo last year where he was mentored and coached by the rest of the Buena Counseling team.

He exudes compassion and a calm nature with both students and parents . . . I consider him a relationship builder,

— Tiffany Dyer

Assistant principal Tiffany Dyer expressed the immense value and importance of what Amaro is doing for the students he serves.

“With some of the students that he’s been working closely with, we have seen improvement as far as, improved attendance, …[and] grades,” Dyer said. “ It’s going to take a while to see those types of changes take time.”

Dyer showed pride and excitement for what Amaro can bring to the table for students this year.

“He exudes compassion and a calm nature with both students and parents . . . I consider him a relationship builder,” Dyer said. “He’s good at developing rapport with students and families but also with other staff, faculty, and being able to connect with students.”

Amaro takes pride in the difference and impact he can make at Buena. “I like the influence I am able to have and that is what got me interested in pursuing counseling,” Amaro said.

Amaro explained these the last couple of months have been an “adjustment” learning his role and how he fits in with the Buena counseling team. Amaro is working with multiple programs to help the students put their best foot forward.

“Mrs. Herrera, an English learner monitor, and I have been meeting in first period for the last few weeks and doing interview surveys with our EL students to get to know [them],” Amaro said.

Strengthening the English learner program at Buena is very important to Amaro. He wants students to feel free to reach out to him and understand that he can be a pillar for them to lean on.

“I want to make sure that students feel supported on campus, that they know they have a counselor up here who’s looking after them, who’s supporting them, [and] who’s going to advocate for them,” Amaro said.