“Intentional to me means being conscious and aware of the work I do and relationships in my life” – Nicole
“I am intentional,” said Nicole Neri, a Student Assistance Specialist here at CHS. She has been involved with CHS in a variety of Youth Services programs between 1998 and 2005 and has been in the Student Assistance Program since 2010.
“Intentional to me means being conscious and aware of the work I do and relationships in my life” Nicole said. “It means offering empathy and asking questions.”
11 years ago, Nicole lost her twin brother to suicide. 6 years ago, she lost her younger brother to an overdose. “Both of my brothers’ deaths were preventable,” said Nicole. “If they had had services like we offer at CHS, maybe they would still be here today.”
Though the loss of her brothers was heartbreaking, it made her more intentional. “When it happened I thought, what good could ever come from this? But today, when students tell me they are having suicidal thoughts or are using drugs and alcohol, I can really be present for them. I ask questions and engage them. I don’t just listen, I hear them.”
Nicole loves working at CHS and is happy she has the opportunity to engage her students everyday. In spite of the terrible losses she has experienced in her life, she has gained intentionality and purpose.