Horst to transition from chemistry to guidance

After eight years of teaching chemistry, Carolyn Horst plans on becoming the new guidance counselor, replacing Jennifer Ghizz, who resigned in October. But because the school has not been able to find a suitable chemistry teacher, that transition won’t happen until next fall.

“I think I’m just excited to try something different,” Horst said. “My favorite part about teaching isn’t really so much what I teach but the students that I’m working with and having an impact on them.”

By becoming a guidance counselor, Horst said she will have a better opportunity to reach more students in career and college planning.

“It’s just everyone is so different. As you start a year out with a group of students and you don’t know them at all, as you progress with them throughout the year, you get to know them more on an individual level,” Horst said. “Watching the students overcome things that are really difficult for them and progress, and sharing things with you about their personal lives, that’s just really rewarding,” Horst said. “I really enjoy that and knowing I made a difference.”

Horst previously worked at other schools.

“My first job was at Vero Beach High School … and I taught kind of like a remedial science class, and that was fun,” Horst said.

After teaching at Vero Beach High School for two years, Horst moved to teach chemistry at Florida Air Academy for a year and a half.

“And then a job opened up at West Shore, and that year I was kind of halfway through,” Horst said. “I’ve been here ever since, and it’s been awesome.”

Coming to West Shore has made an impact on Horst.

“It has definitely changed me,” Horst said. “I was out of my comfort zone and it was hard in the beginning … and I also found that I had never had students ask the type of questions that West Shore students ask. Our students are really high level, so they pushed me.”

While Horst is excited to fill in her new position as a guidance counselor, her students have mixed emotions.

“I personally love Mrs. Horst, and she is 100 percent the best science teacher I’ve ever had,” freshman Rachel Benezra said. “I am upset she is leaving to become a guidance counselor because it was part of my plan to take AP Chemistry next year, and I don’t know if I want to now that she’s not the teacher.”

By Laura Shelton