MASC

PBHS StuCo advisor named top in Missouri
Posted on 03/20/2018

A Senior High teacher of 13 years has received statewide recognition for her impact advising not only the Poplar Bluff student life organization, but student councils throughout Missouri over the past several years.

Longtime math instructor Hope Conover was named the advisor of the year for the Missouri Association of Student Councils on Saturday, March 10, during the organization’s 70th annual state convention in Lebanon. 

“Hope’s just a phenomenal person and she’s done a little bit more above and beyond what is expected of an advisor, making her application rise to the top,” said Terri Johnson, MASC executive director. “(Serving) your home school is one thing, but to take responsibility to serve MASC at the district level – that’s big stuff.”

In addition to serving as advisor over PBHS StuCo, alongside co-advisor Mitch Davis in the past few years, Conover recently completed a three-year term serving as MASC Southeast District representative. She also served multiple years as advisor of the Fulton Summer Leadership Workshop, a weeklong camp that brings together several hundred Missouri students at William Woods University. 

“I love working with kids from other councils and watching them tap into their inner leadership skills and come to life,” Conover wrote to the nomination committee in November when she was selected as Southeast District advisor of the year. “The connection with the campers, junior counselors and the other advisor counselors are experiences that have helped me grow as an advisor, teacher, mother and all-around person.”

Since Conover began with StuCo in 2011, she has collaborated with Chartwells to host the school dining service’s Community Thanksgiving Dinner, increasing from feeding 700 guests to 1,300. StuCo puts on the region’s largest single producing blood drive for the American Red Cross outside of Southeast Missouri State University. The student group also spearheaded Pink Out Day, a community-wide event that went from donating $1,800 to nearly $14,000 to the United Cancer Assistance Network through T-shirt sales in concert with a Mules Football game. 

Other annual activities that StuCo helps organize includes Powder Puff, a fundraiser that provides Christmas gifts to children at the Haven House; the Mr. Snowman male pageant, which serves to fund student participation in the summer workshop; and the Special Olympics Missouri spring games. New this year, StuCo organized a back-to-school assembly to welcome incoming freshmen.

Conover, who was named the Poplar Bluff Secondary Grade Span Teacher of the Year in 2012, said serving as the freshmen class sponsor prior to accepting the StuCo advisor role prepared her for the demands and more importantly, helped her establish relationships with students.

Jennie Randolph of the Class of 2013 served as StuCo president during Conover’s second year as advisor. Randolph, now a PBHS communication arts teacher, recalls her family struggling through illness at the time, she said, and credits Conover for providing a positive outlet for her to focus her energy. 

“From the time she took over Student Council, she has poured everything in herself to invest in our students,” Randolph said. “Her goal is always to focus on the students, and she has changed many aspects of Student Council to better represent our students here at PBHS. My experience with Student Council left a huge impact on my life, and Mrs. Conover is a major reason I am a teacher today.” 

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Cutline: MASC Executive Director Terri Johnson surprised Hope Conover with the advisor of the year award during the annual state convention.

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