Mr. Dennis: A Perfect Fit


Mr. Dennis hard at work in the guidance suite with senior, Breanna Taphouse

Mr. Dennis hard at work in the guidance suite with senior, Breanna Taphouse

Frank Sinatra School of the Arts (FSSA) welcomes Mr. Jacob Dennis with open arms to our tight knit school community. Mr. Dennis is one of the newest additions to the FSSA faculty. He is primarily the counselor for fine art majors in our school and can be found in the guidance suite. His office is on the right and his door is always open.

“I always wanted to work with students in terms of helping them and giving them guidance and direction ever since I was in junior high school. I had that feeling that it was something I wanted to go in to,” says Mr. Dennis.

In order to fulfill an internship Mr. Dennis returned to a school he had graduated from, Thomas Jefferson High School located in Brooklyn, NY. On his return he worked with his former guidance counselor, who had suggested the idea and further pushed Mr. Dennis to become a guidance counselor. Mr. Dennis has always been very serious about his work ethic. In high school he was an honors, college-bound student. A graduate of Cornell University, Mr. Dennis earned his Master’s degree in psychological counseling and rehabilitation from Columbia University Teachers College.

As a college counselor, Mr. Dennis has a lot of reasons as to why he feels he can truly help his students.

“There is a lack in, and need for, the skill and background in career development, which I do have,” says Mr. Dennis.

He also explained how his experience as a coach has helped to further advise his student athletes who are yearning to be granted scholarships and general recognition for their effort. Mr. Dennis understands the difficulty the college process entails. He has noticed that many students tend to apply to colleges very late, where it becomes a rushed procedure. However, he plans to make students aware of their college options from the very start of freshman year to instruct and enlighten them early on.

The students are what drives Mr. Dennis as a professional. Through them he is able to find ways to help and guide them when they are in need. He feels that they value what he has to say. Mr. Dennis has grown to greatly enjoy working at FSSA. The students and faculty have truly made him settle in comfortably.

“If I had to measure my success at any time it’s always based upon how the students perceive me,” says Mr. Dennis.

This is truly what’s most important to him in fulfilling his role as a counselor. Although Mr. Dennis did not have an arts background he does have a performance background. He was involved in track and field in his high school years. Mr. Dennis was offered scholarships to pursue undergraduate athletic positions. He has a clear idea of what it’s like to be a performer and working on a stage to present one’s self and work.

“My disposition as a college counselor makes this the right position, I thought it was a good fit for me,”  he adds.

Mr. Dennis is positive he is a good fit and addition to our school. He is ready to share his knowledge, advice, and good company with the students and faculty at FSSA.

– by Claudia Messina ’15