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Get to Know Your Counselors

Ralston School Counselors

Shannon Smoot, MA, PPSC, APCC4746


Passionate | Social Justice Warrior | Loyal


Ralston School Counselor, Last Names A-K


Personal Mission


To approach my work from a place of love, understanding, equity, and advocacy so that I stay grounded & rooted in the heart of the community. To always be intentional in my engagement with students so that I can effectively support them in realizing THEIR full potential and they can feel safe, cared for, & confident in who they are. And, to collaborate with key stakeholders to transform schools in becoming trauma informed, equitable, and inclusive for all.


Hometown: Born and raised in San Mateo, Ca



● University of San Francisco

○ Masters in Counseling Psychology

■ Dual concentrations in School Counseling & Clinical Counseling

● University of California, Santa Cruz

○ Bachelors in Community Studies, Concentrations: Youth Development, Youth Organizing, & Youth Empowerment

● Pupil Personnel Services Credential, PPSC

● Registered Associate Professional Clinical Counselor APCC4746

● Mindful Educator (16 Hours given by Mindful Schools)



● Spending time with family and friends

● Mindfulness

● Nature & Plants

● Hiking

● Reading/writing/learning

● Graffiti Art

● Inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community

● Juvenile Justice

● Youth Organizing/movements

● Trauma Informed Care 


Favorite Brain Food: Chips & Salsa


Advice to parents/caregivers: Your students are on this amazing journey! Approach their experiences and all that they are with wonderment, meet them where they are at, and validate, validate, validate.


Advice to Students​: Trust your gut. It knows what your head hasn’t figured out yet.


Life Motto: “Be you, Love You, All Ways, Always”- Alex Elle


Contact Information: 

650-637-4880 x 1610

Room 10

she | her | hers



Christian Mach, M.A., PPSC


Genuine  |  Empathic  |  Courageous


Ralston School Counselor, Last Names L-Z


Personal Mission


I want to help my students to reach their full potential. I want to explore with them their unique strengths, interests, values & personality traits so they can enhance their self-awareness and self-confidence. I want to be an effective collaborator in the effort to make a positive contribution to our learning community.  


Hometown: I grew up in Connecticut, Illinois, and Pennsylvania but have since lived in many places including Alaska, Texas, and Eastern Europe. I consider myself to be a member of the global community…a citizen of the world.



  • Penn State University—Bachelor of Arts degree in Cultural Anthropology
  • James Madison University—Master of Education degree in Counseling Psychology
  • Pupil Personnel Services Credential—School Counseling



  • Reading, Writing, Learning & Teaching
  • Hiking, Biking & Running
  • Chess, Billiards & Tennis
  • Freedom, Justice, Equity, Environmental Stewardship & Participatory Democracy
  • Being socially-conscious & working with others to create a better world


Favorite Brain Food: Peanut Butter


Advice to parents/caregivers: You have the hardest job in the world…try to be patient and set realistic expectations (of yourself as well as your child). No one is perfect!


Advice to students: Be honest with yourself & others. Keep it real!


Life Motto/Quote: “Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, ‘What are you doing for others?’” -Martin Luther King, Jr. / “We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world.”-Howard Zinn


Contact Information:

650-637-4880 x 1608

Rm. 8