By: Gilbert Jaime
The new school year began about two months ago and there are many new faces at Tustin High; not only of new students, but of our new staff as well. You may have seen him at the office when you visit your counselor. You may have seen him in the hallway helping freshmen find classrooms. You may have seen him helping a student open a locker. So who is the new counseling tech that always has a smile on his face? It’s Mr. Darius Durham.
Mr. Darius was a supervisor at Currie Middle School. He has made many strong bonds and relationships with those students and because of that he chose to be here at Tustin High. Now, he can continue making an impact on the student lives and on the high school student community as a whole. “My background goes back to having experience with Currie. Currie is the feed program into Tustin. When this opportunity presented itself it gave me an opportunity to reconnect with the kids. I had an opportunity to speak with and maintain the relationships that I had with them two years ago; so that’s the reason why I wanted to be around Tustin.” The relationships he has established with our current Tustin students will have a positive impact on their high school careers. They will have a familiar face they can come to when in doubt or when they need that extra push.
Mr. Darius has had a month or so here at Tustin, but how has it been so far for him? Does he enjoy it? Does he look forward to it every day? The San Diego State University graduate had many positive things to say about Tustin High students and staff, “I love it, I look forward to coming every day and I don’t think that’s going to change, the environment is great, the students teachers, faculty, the people I work around every day make it enjoyable and I don’t see it changing.” It’s more than clear that Mr. Darius enjoys what he does.
“Education is the number one tool in our home and in my family. Education is used in a daily basis, that’s the number one emphasis I put and my wife put on our kids.” Mr. Darius’ commitment to the students here at Tustin is undeniable, and that same commitment is instilled into his own family too. Education in his eyes is the key to living a successful life and Mr. Darius will do whatever he can to improve the educations of his students.
As for many successful people, growing up may have not been easy, just like it wasn’t for Mr. Darius. The counseling tech grew up just outside of LA, “so if you could picture the atmosphere, you’re in Compton and there is not a lot of positive people there.” Even in a challenging environment, thanks to a mentor, young Mr. Darius was able to overcome the obstacles and negative atmosphere that the city of Compton surrounded him with. “He was about five years older than me but he took time to just take me under his wings, teach me things that I should do, I should not do, just educate me from a standpoint where he was,” Thanks to his friend, Jimmie Stevenson, Mr. Darius is able to pass on to other young people at Tustin High, the knowledge he has obtained.
The counseling technician is now part of the Tiller Family, ready for a successful 2015-2016 school year. So say hello to him whenever you see him around; he is here to help out, not only with counseling, but also with bettering your high school experience.