Impact students far beyond the classroom
As the daughter of a school principal, Maria Reina Santiago grew up with an unusual perspective on education, getting a behind-the-scenes view, and falling in love with that world. “I love school as an organization and as part of a community,” she explains. “I believe that schools are not just there to academically educate students, but they're influencing the life of students in so many ways.” Although she didn’t want to be a teacher herself, she knew she wanted to work in education, supporting students, teachers, and administrators.
School psychology proved to be the perfect solution for Santiago, giving her the opportunity to support schools and the development of students on a broader level. As a school psychologist, she is able to work directly with students, implementing academic, behavioral, social, and emotional interventions. But she is also able to support the adults influencing the students’ lives, like the parents, administration and the school district. “We have the opportunity of honestly creating collaboration between school members, with the community, and with the parents.”
“Working with the teachers, working with the administrators, helping the team, thinking about what would work in their environment, how can we move towards the outcomes that we want—that really inspires me.”
Maria Reina Santiago