Ms. Anderson maps students’ futures

Staff feature – Ms. Sandy Anderson


Ms. Anderson is on top of the world at the Construction Fair.

Aldo Suarez, Classes Editor

Life after high school may seem like one big puzzle. Students who want to apply to college have to fill out application forms, take the right tests, keep track of deadlines, and more. To get a job, teens have to learn how to apply, prepare for interviews, create resumes, and, most importantly find out what they would be interested in doing.

While this may seem overwhelming, there is one person on campus who is available to help with these decisions and more. For the past eight years, Ms. Sandy Anderson, Armijo´s College and Career adviser, has been assisting students in reaching their future goals.

The main focus of College and Career Center is to help students identify what they want to do after they graduate, and then help them reach their goals. Ms. Anderson has been filling that role since 2014, but she has gained her experience by working at other locations, including Vallejo Transition and Rodriguez.

Ms. Anderson’s own journey began in Chicago. “Then, I left Chicago and went to Hawaii, where my grandmother is, and I actually went to school there,” she said. At 18, she came to California and attended Sac State, majoring in Business and Administration. As time went on, she realized that this wasn’t something that she enjoyed doing.

“It was very cut throat, it was a 9-5, and I realized that I enjoyed working for non-profits, so I began to work in Vallejo in a place called Vallejo Transition where I worked with Special Ed Students and I really liked that so I moved into that direction of public education.¨ Ms. Anderson said.

While most people go out to find a job, Ms. Anderson’s stumbled upon this opportunity. “I love working with kids,” she said. “I absolutely love it! I know people who ask, ‘How can you work with high school students?’ so I feel like I’m making a difference and I love the high school population. Since I feel like they are becoming adults, we have adult conversations with them.”

She has worked with the younger students, too. “They are not super hands-on, but that’s more focused on Career exploration,” she said. “I know this might sound cliché, but I feel the job found me instead of me finding the job.”

A traditional counselor takes care of scheduling and things related to the students’ grades, but being a College and Career adviser allows Ms. Anderson to do fun things that will catch the attention of students who need to look past the present.

“There is a difference between what I do compared to what a counselor does,” she said. She’s been able to go to field trips, including a recent Construction Fair where she took “19 young ladies who are interested in the trades.”

She also gets to spend a lot of time doing research. “I get to absorb all that knowledge to then pass it on to you,” Ms. Anderson said.

“One thing I would change is the students’ motivation. I feel that students don’t like learning and they are not motivated, so they don’t have the passion and they don’t have the respect. If there is anything I can do or anything I can change or is there an instant to change that, I would.”

Although there have been challenges, Ms. Anderson has found a niche in helping students survive high school and helping them see their future beyond the gates of Armijo. When she isn’t doing that, she likes to go and do some exploring to other cities with her husband, working out, and spending time with her cat.