Head Counselor Thomas Seward has transferred schools after more than six and a half years in counseling at Naples High School. He shared the news with his students through Canvas, letting them know of the move. 

“It is with mixed emotions that I am sending this message,” Seward said. “I wanted to let you know that I will be leaving Naples High School at the end of the first semester to take the position of Director of Guidance at Aubrey Rogers High School…”

Seward is anticipating his new job at Aubrey Rogers High School, a new school being built in North Naples.

It’s like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to open up a school from the ground up,” Seward said. “So it’ll be a big learning opportunity, and hopefully [I’ll] be able to create something great out of nothing, so that’s the challenge and the thing I’m most excited about.”

Seward has impacted hundreds of students by helping them succeed in high school. He has used his experience to assist them in different ways.

“For those students on his caseload, he has taken a personal interest in their success as students, while also personally getting to know them and their families,” Principal Kristina Lee said. “The connections he has built at Naples High School have made a lasting positive impact in the Golden Eagle school community.”

The guidance department has five counselors for the school’s population of about 1,750 students. Students are sorted alphabetically based on the first letter of their last name.

“In my caseload, there’s approximately 320 that fall within my alphabet,” Seward said.

Even with his departure, Seward will still be available to support his students and offer his guidance to any and all concerns. 

“Mr. Seward will still be ‘on call’ to continue to assist with the transition and answer questions or offer support when needed,” Lee said.

The counseling team made a swift transition to fill the vacancy. A new counselor, Kristen Gauly, officially joined the NHS staff on Jan 17., ensuring that no students were left without a counselor. As a counselor with 19 years of experience, Gauly has worked at Palmetto Ridge for eight years and was a counselor and director of guidance in Indiana. She has worked closely with the NHS staff to build connections and adapt to the Golden Eagle community. 

“Ms. Gauly, our new guidance counselor, has spent time with Mr. Seward and the NHS guidance team to get to know the school, meet some of our students and staff and learn about her new role,” Lee said.

Both Seward and Gauly are looking forward to their new jobs, awaiting new opportunities to help their students reach academic success. 

“I’m just really thrilled to be here,” Gauly said. “Naples High is an amazing school. There’s great staff, great students — I get to work with an amazing counseling team.”