We Love Our CIS Success Stories

My name is A'Ja Venible and I work at Vogel Intermediate as the CIS Site Coordinator. When I was in 6th grade, I met my first site coordinator at Palo Alto Middle School in Killeen, Tx. Her name was Mrs. Brooks and she quickly became someone I trusted and looked forward to meeting with.

I moved when I was in 8th grade and my new hometown did not have CIS for about 2 years. I met Ms. Teresa Stills my 10th grade year. I had a lot of personal and family issues going on, and she helped me walk through them. She introduced me to journaling, and created a safe space for me to express myself. She moved the following year, but she continued to keep in contact with my by attending sport events and other school events. Ms. Stills is a big reason why I became interested in social work. She has continued to be a part of my life, cheering me on from the sideline.

Mr. Williams replaced Ms. Stills my 11th grade year. He would take us on college tours, and made sure we understood the process of applying for financial aid, etc. I applied for college as an education major, but Mr. Williams helped me realize that I had a passion for mental health and social work, so I majored in Psychology and minored in Human Services while at Sam Houston.

I graduated from Sam Houston in 2018. I am number 10 out of my moms 12 children and the first to complete college. I am thankful to have Site Coordinators that cared enough to invest their time in me. Now that I am a Site Coordinator with an understanding of the work load, I can clearly see how much time my Site Coordinators sacrificed for me. There were times that I spent HOURS in their office, but I was never turned away. I was always welcomed with open arms and lots of love. CIS is where I am supposed to be; CIS made a difference in my life and I am so blessed and thankful to be able to do the same for other students.

In Addition: A’Ja is currently attending graduate school to receive her Masters Of Social Work Degree which will be completed next year.

#AllinforKids #cisalumni #WhateverItTakes #givingback