Looking out of the windshield, instead of the rearview, for Dr. Nicole Yetter


Julia Nardone

After 20 years with North Penn, Guidance Department Chair Dr. Nicole Yetter is moving on.

“The rearview mirror is small for a reason. That’s why the windshield is bigger,” North Penn guidance counselor Dr. Nicole Yetter always tells her students. “Things happen to us and it doesn’t mean that we should forget them, but it also means that there’s a big world ahead of us, and the big focus should be that we can always move forward.” 

Finishing her 20th year in the North Penn School District, NPHS guidance department chair Dr. Nicole Yetter has made the decision to retire. 

In the beginning of her career at North Penn, Yetter started out at Hatfield Elementary School as a guidance counselor where she implemented a system of classroom meetings to prevent bullying among students.

“I would go into the classrooms and do lessons with the students so that they would learn skills to build relationships with each other,” Yetter explained. “The whole premise behind the program was for students and staff to make connections. You built relationships and got to know each other and formed this bond; it found that you were less likely to do bullying and harassment.”

In 2011, Yetter earned her doctorate degree and her dissertation was centered around the concept of classroom meetings and their impact on the prevention of bullying within schools. In her dissertation, she argued that with the meetings, she found a reduction in bullying and harassment, the need for less discipline, and an increase in academics and attendance. 

“The meetings were anywhere from ten to twenty minutes depending on the grade level, similar to what we have here as Knight Time,” Yetter said. “It was a time where either the lesson was led by the teacher or a link leader and there were activities to build relationships within the classroom.”

As both an elementary school guidance counselor and a high school guidance counselor, Yetter found that when it comes to counseling, the two are similar than most think.

“For me it was foreshadowing,” Yetter said about the difference between when she was at the elementary level and the high school level. “I got to see the students start out in their elementary years and then when I transitioned into the high school they were still dealing with things that were just bigger.” 

Outside of school, Yetter continues to help students and families through an online company that provides social and emotional learning support for families and students called Don’t Snooze Academy. She has written six courses for middle school and high school students that focuses on effective communication, leadership skills, and relationships. 

“I still will continue to do my life’s work, which is helping adolescents and adults and children through social and emotional learning and professional development,” Yetter expressed about continuing to instruct on Don’t Snooze Academy even after retiring from North Penn.

I still will continue to do my life’s work, which is helping adolescents and adults and children through social and emotional learning and professional development.

— Dr. Nicole Yetter

Yetter also teaches as an adjunct professor, which is someone who teaches part time introductory undergraduate courses or preparatory courses in college, at Delaware Valley University, and plans on continuing to teach for them in the future. 

After the retirement of her husband, Mr. Glenn Yetter, last year, Yetter felt it was the best time for her to take the next step in her life. 

“Him retiring a little early probably did up my timeline, however, things just presented themselves and it just seemed right to go,” Yetter admitted on how much her husband’s retirement influenced her decision to do the same. “It’s been twenty years and there’s always other opportunities out there. It’s important to have time to spend with your family and to do those things because every day is precious.”

After his retirement last year, Mr. Yetter started his own travel agency called BestYet Travel, pursuing a passion that both him and his wife thoroughly enjoy as they travel frequently.

“We love to travel, him and I. Over the last twenty years we have had some wonderful times travelling with family and friends and with each other. He took that passion, he loves to plan trips and now he plans them for other people,” Yetter said, reminiscing on their past travels.

A favorite trip of Yetter’s was her ten year anniversary where they spent two and a half weeks in Istanbul, Athens, and Santorini, a small island off the coast of Greece. Yetter described the trip as magical while hoping to go on more trips like it.

With the school year’s end closing in, Yetter remains grateful for her time at North Penn and all the memories she’s made with students, families and friends.

“When you do something for this long and you’re as invested as I have been, it’s not a job or work, it’s where I come to help people everyday. I’m not saying it doesn’t present its challenges, of course it has over the years, but I do it because I love it and it’s a passion of mine,” she reflected.

And for those she’s leaving behind whether it’s students, families, teachers or friends, Yetter just wants them to treat themselves with kindness, be respectful, and not be so hard on themselves.

“Remember that the rearview mirror is small and keep focused,” Yetter finished. “I just want kids to be their most authentic self, whatever that is for them.”