Hi, I’m Sue Hamilton. I help people find their life path in education and careers. My approach is wholistic. I get to know a learners’ strengths based on personal discussions and testing. I research options, present them, and choices are made in consultation with the student, family and school.
I have worked as an educator for many years. I started my career as a fourth grade teacher in Gilroy then became a master teacher after four years. I taught adults and high school students applied academics, then found my passion as a college and career counselor with San Jose Unified School District. During summers, I began a private practice as an education and career development counselor.
All of my experiences, both rewarding and demanding, have enabled me to find what I was meant to do: helping students and clients realize their talents and passions, then use those talents and passions to move themselves forward toward their goals.
In my experience, the public education system wants to help every student, but fails much too often. I am passionate about helping all students, especially the “invisible” ones, realize their full potential.
I developed Starfish Initiative career planning/student mentoring curriculum for Grades 9-16 and I’m Going to College student guide for students to improve successful educational transitions.
I want to share a story that means a lot to me and illustrates my personal philosophy.
The Starfish Story
Once, a man was walking along the beach. The sun was shining and it was a beautiful day, while off in the distance, another person was going back and forth between the surf’s edge and the beach. Back and forth this person went. As the man approached he could see that there were hundreds of starfish stranded on the sand as the result of the natural action of the tide.
The man was stuck by the apparent futility of the task. There were far too many starfish. Many of them were sure to perish. As he approached the person continued the task of picking up starfish one by one and throwing them into the surf.
As he came up to the person he said, “You must be crazy. There are thousands of miles of beach covered with starfish. You can’t possibly make a difference.” The person looked at the man, then stooped down and picked up one more starfish and threw it back into the ocean. He turned back to the man and said, “It sure made a difference to that one!”
I have discovered that we have the college admissions process backward. Most students first select the college they want to attend, then sometime within the first year or two, they choose a major and then before they graduate they choose a career path and get a job. And we wonder that too many college graduates have no clue what they are going to do after college? It’s time to “flip that process”, which is why I begin with a clients’ strengths, hopes and dreams, then build upon them, to enable each person to find their passion and fulfill their potential and make their world, and ours, a better place.