- Lydia Studied:
- Lydia Now:
- MHS School Counselor
Straight out of high school, Lydia Arevalo was a self-described “shy girl who didn’t know what she wanted to do with her life.” She enrolled at Marshalltown Community College thinking she’d major in Pre-Medicine, but a D- in her first biology class led her to reconsider. She took a psychology class with Dr. Robert Moore and says she enjoyed it immensely. Because of personal and family struggles, she decided to switch her major to psychology. She loved it, and she has never looked back.
“I built great relationships with the teachers at MCC,” says Lydia. “I even met my husband, Raul Arevalo, in Dave Engel’s speech class! P.J. Colbert was an MCC teacher who really mentored me … she even wrote a recommendation that helped gain me admission to the Buena Vista master’s degree program.”
After graduating from MCC, Lydia transferred to Iowa State University, where she completed a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She did a school counseling internship at MHS, which led her to decide that she wanted to focus on a career helping at-risk youth. She earned her master’s in education from Buena Vista University. Lydia was a school counselor at South Hamilton before accepting her current MHS position in 2012. In 2015-16, she was named Iowa High School Counselor of the Year by the Iowa School Counselor Association.
Now that she’s in a position to advise high school students about college opportunities, Lydia has no qualms recommending Marshalltown Community College. “MCC was, and is, a great place! We have many students who take advantage of the dual credit opportunities while they’re still in high school, which is fantastic. And I think the MCC career academy programs do a great job of providing hands-on training while students are still in high school. Many take that opportunity to get their feet wet, learn about a career, and then they can be halfway done with the program by the time they graduate from high school. MHS has a really strong partnership with MCC, and our students are the beneficiaries of that!”
Lydia and Raul (a teacher at Lenihan) have three children: Rowan, Piper and Landon. In their free time they enjoy traveling to Mexico and Washington to visit family.