Introducing Keith Papin, counselor

With over 1200 students at Ames High, the student counselors have more than enough to keep them busy. Each of the four counselors is responsible for supporting their students academically, striking jolly conversation when needed, and just generally making sure everyone’s on track to graduate from high school and survive the real world. Needless to say, it is a fairly important job, and not one that just anyone can do. After Mr. Hendricks, former counselor and happy newlywed, moved to Minnesota, he left a rather large void in the counseling department. Once the administration had interviewed four or five candidates for the counselor position, it reached the consensus that Ames resident Keith Papin would be the best fit. Papin had also done an internship with Mr. Hendricks last year and so was somewhat familiar with the position. “In his first couple of months he has demonstrated the type of initiative, leadership, and professionalism we want to see in an Ames High counselor,” said associate principal Dr. Avise, “He is a definite asset to Ames High.” The Detroit native first came to Ames to study exercise science at ISU in 1992, and has liked Ames enough to stick around for almost two decades. He notes that Ames, among other things, has a huge amount of green space, plenty of parks, bike paths, and ways to be active outside. As a side note, he was also impressed by how timely and orderly CyRide is. “The Detroit bus system was horrific,” Papin said, “They’d just drive right by your stop and you don’t even know why.” After working briefly for CyRide, getting his masters in both counselor and higher education and coaching basketball on the side, Papin has now come to work in the Ames High counseling department. But exactly what kind of work does he do? “Basically I just serve and support students with their academics,” Papin said. “Try to remove roadblocks to their success. Some of it is personal, social support as well as academic and career planning support.” And although Papin claims there was a long story behind why he came to Ames, the reason he decided to stay is a simple one. “I love my job,” he said. “I think Ames was a great fit; very friendly faculty and students. A lot of teachers went out of their way to introduce themselves to me. I really do like serving students and I can’t imagine doing anything else right now.”