Meghan Mitchell Duplessis, in her eleventh year as a counselor at Harry Hurst Middle School, was recently named the 2022 Louisiana Middle School Counselor of the Year by the Louisiana Counselor Association Conference.
Duplessis earned her Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary English Education in 2007 from Southeastern Louisiana University. She went on to earn her Master’s Degree in Counselor Education from Southeastern Louisiana University in 2011.
The Destrehan resident, who was born and raised in St. Charles Parish, previously taught middle school English at J.B. Martin Middle School for several years before taking the job at Hurst in 2012. She took over the job from her mother, Dellery Mitchell, who was the counselor at Hurst for over 30 years.
“She’s thrilled,” Duplessis said of her mother. “She couldn’t be any more happy that I was able to take that position at Hurst.”
Duplessis was nominated for the award by a supervisor. She then had to undergo an application process that required her to explain how as a counselor she assists with students’ academic concerns, career needs, and social/emotional needs.
In the application, Duplessis said, she detailed how she uses Google classroom heavily as a counselor to best reach the needs of students. Another strategy the counseling team at Hurst uses is something they call one-minute meetings.
“Throughout the school year we’ll set up outside of a teachers classroom and we’ll spend the day with a certain grade level and just ask a couple questions to each student,” she said. “It really just helps us keep in touch and really keep a pulse on what is happening.”
Duplessis said she was ecstatic and honored to receive the Counselor of the Year honor.
“I was really excited to just have another way to showcase all of the great work we do as a school to provide a positive school experience for our students,” she said. “Middle school can be a really trying or difficult time in these students’ lives, so to be able to help them in any way is really gratifying.”
Hurst was the first public school that Duplessis attended, she said.
“It always held a special place in my life,” she said. “It kind of opened up a whole other world to me … working there is definitely a dream of mine.”