By Thomas Sellers Jr.
For years Ashleigh Currie has served in the role as a counselor at the former Millington Central High School.
Now under the umbrella of Millington Central Middle High School, Currie is continuing her approach of dedicated service to the students, faculty, staff, parents and her direct colleague. So when she was asked to get some balloons for the U.S. Navy’s visit to the campus last Thursday, it was a task she’s done before to honor students’ scholarships and awards given to her peers.
MCMHS Principal Michael Perry informed Currie she was welcomed to come to the Millington Performing Arts Center for the meeting involving the seniors and administration.
Currie still was unaware she was the guest of honor. NC1 (AW) Brandon Morris and EMC (SW/AW) Will Haskell of TAS Millington LCPO came to present Currie with the national recognition of the Impact Influence Award.
As Morris gave his speech and named a few members of the MCHS Class of 2021, Currie started to realize she was the educator being recognized.
“Mr. Perry was like, ‘There’s a meeting,’” she recalled. “‘You can just come out if you want to with your senior class.’ I was like ‘Sure.’ I was truly surprised. The more he started talking I was thinking those were my students from last year. ‘Oh my God.’”
The Impact Influence Award was awarded to Currie for her continued support of students and the direct impact she has had on students who are now serving the United States Navy. Thank you for your service to your students and the United States Navy.
The 2020-21 school year was Currie’s first as the senior counselor replacing her friend and colleague Georgette Farmer. Curries arrival to the job came just in time for a global pandemic and leadership change within Millington Municipal Schools.
With friends, family and direct colleagues Brenda Lawson and Sharon Harris by her side, Currie survived and thrived in her first year as senior counselor.
“It was overwhelming. It is an honor coming from the U.S. Navy,” Currie said. “I’m blessed. That’s all I can say. I am truly blessed, shocked and honored. It was tough and at first I was so nervous. But I have a lot support there with me in Ms. Lawson and Ms. Harris.
“And Ms. Georgette Farmer helped me out a lot because this was her position with the 12th graders,” she continued. “Whatever she did, she had it set out for me. If I had any questions, I could just call her. I am blessed with a team I trust and depend on. They were there with me the entire way.”
Currie said the journey through her first year as senior counselor was worth it seeing the children achieve and head into the next phase of their lives.
“I see the kids going through so much and at the same time I see all their potential,” she said. “I see what they could become. God put me in the position to help them along the way. It has helped me to let them be a little more independent.
“At first I started off like, ‘You have to do this and do this,’” Currie continued. “Now I let them do their own thing. If they wanted to talk to a recruiter or go to college I’m like, ‘Come by my office and talk to me anytime. I’ll have the recruiter’s information.’ The main thing is having them be successful after high school. While in high school they have people there to help guide them but once you get out of high school who is there to help them. I’m trying to make sure they’ll have somebody there and make sure they know where they’re going from A to B. Then I can say I did my job because I set them up to be successful in life.”
Currie, a Brighton High School graduate, is being celebrated for her award around the area. The educator said her primary reward is seeing her students reach for their dreams and playing a part in the process.
“I love those kids honestly,” she said. “I got to know them pretty personally.
“I’m so proud of them just knowing where they are right now,” Currie concluded. “It just makes me so happy inside to know they’re serving our country. I am so proud of them. I want to see them again and just know they are being successful with their lives.”