U-High Midway

Tunis: Mentor, Listener, Counselor

Ronald Tunis will retire next week, after 24 years of counseling here

TALKING+IT+THROUGH.+Junior+Teddy+Neer+talks+with+counselor+Ronald+Tunis+in+the+conference+room+of+the+U-High+Learning+and+Counseling+office.+Teddy+explained+that+Mr.+Tunis+has+always+been+a+kind+figure+in+the+Lab+community%2C+and+that+he+will+miss+his+presense+next+year.+In+his+time+at+Lab%2C+Mr.+Tunis+has+been+a+counselor+for+hundreds+of+students.
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Tunis: Mentor, Listener, Counselor

TALKING IT THROUGH. Junior Teddy Neer talks with counselor Ronald Tunis in the conference room of the U-High Learning and Counseling office. Teddy explained that Mr. Tunis has always been a kind figure in the Lab community, and that he will miss his presense next year. In his time at Lab, Mr. Tunis has been a counselor for hundreds of students.

TALKING IT THROUGH. Junior Teddy Neer talks with counselor Ronald Tunis in the conference room of the U-High Learning and Counseling office. Teddy explained that Mr. Tunis has always been a kind figure in the Lab community, and that he will miss his presense next year. In his time at Lab, Mr. Tunis has been a counselor for hundreds of students.

Elena Liao

TALKING IT THROUGH. Junior Teddy Neer talks with counselor Ronald Tunis in the conference room of the U-High Learning and Counseling office. Teddy explained that Mr. Tunis has always been a kind figure in the Lab community, and that he will miss his presense next year. In his time at Lab, Mr. Tunis has been a counselor for hundreds of students.

Elena Liao

Elena Liao

TALKING IT THROUGH. Junior Teddy Neer talks with counselor Ronald Tunis in the conference room of the U-High Learning and Counseling office. Teddy explained that Mr. Tunis has always been a kind figure in the Lab community, and that he will miss his presense next year. In his time at Lab, Mr. Tunis has been a counselor for hundreds of students.

Samira Glaeser-Khan, Managing Editor

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On the afternoon of the annual boys basketball team picture, three boys tumble into counselor Ronald Tunis’ office to ask for help in tying neckties.

Mr. Tunis welcomes them with familial warmth and makes sure each boy looks perfect. 

During his 24 years at U-High, Mr. Tunis embraced his natural talent for making people feel welcome and pursued the principles of his faith by listening to each student with all of his heart. Next week, Mr. Tunis will retire from his counseling role.

He listens with his heart, his mind, and with his whole being. when you are talking to him, he is just completely focused on you.”

— Katy Sinclair, music teacher

Mr. Tunis said that even when he was in high school, students gravitated toward him when they needed to talk.

“I remember as a student it seems like I always had this knack where kids would always come to me and ask me for advice,” he said. “So looking back, counseling was sort of a natural fit.”

When he became a Christian at age 23, Mr. Tunis fully recognized the positive potential of talking with people and helping them through their problems.

“I ended up falling in love with a young lady when I was 21, and it just so happens that she was a Christian,” Mr. Tunis said. While they did not marry, he appreciates her impact on him.

“It was her mentoring that did it for me. To this day I love her to death for what she did for me. Being a Christian, I believe that we are our brother’s keeper and that I can help others by listening and comforting.”

Mr. Tunis feels students have taught him how important it is for young people to feel they are taken seriously.

“You guys just want to know that you matter, that you’re listened to, and that I understand what you’re going through. That’s all you ask,” he said.

Mr. Tunis applies this principle to his work as the faculty adviser of the Black Students’ Association along with counselor Camille Baughn-Cunningham and history teacher Naadia Owens.

“I think that the students in BSA enjoy seeing something that looks like them,” he said. “Some of the conversations we have informally, when I listen to them, I can feel and understand many of the things that are on their hearts and minds.”

Mr. Tunis’ colleagues such as his great friend Katy Sinclair will miss his perceptive presence.

“He listens with his heart, his mind, and his whole being. When you are talking to him, he is just completely focused on you,” Ms. Sinclair, music teacher, said.

After retiring, Mr. Tunis is considering either working as a part-time counselor at a suburban school or offering free couples therapy at his church. Before that, however, Mr. Tunis wants to cross some things off his bucket list.

“When I was a young man I always had this dream of driving to California in a Corvette,” he said, “and I own a Corvette, and that’s what I would like to do soon. The other bucket list item I have is to run with the bulls in Spain. My family thinks I’m absolutely crazy, but that’s what I would like to do.”

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