My college education was just the beginning of what has for me become a lifelong journey as a tenacious learner. It started with a first grader who needed some support in reading. Through the Berea Reads Mentoring Program, I became his tutor. My mentee struggled to find joy and motivation in learning because he felt he couldn't learn. I quickly realized and noted the effort that my mentee was exerting in trying to learn the material and encouraged both him and his mother that he had what it took to be a great student, not just in reading, but in learning for the rest of his life. I didn't give up when one approach didn't work but continued putting into practice what I was learning in the classroom. These many years later, I still remember the anticipation with which my mentee and his mother came to the sessions. Instead of discouragement, my mentee was motivated, still working just as hard, while also meeting with success. After I graduated, I knew I wanted to continue supporting students as they too discovered their personal learning path to success. To that end, I have dedicated the past 20 years of my life; working alongside students and teachers as a support staff member in both early child care settings as well as elementary schools from kindergarten through 5th grade, tutoring students with dyslexia, in addition to mentoring high school students as an AmeriCorps Volunteer, and currently homeschool my six-year-old son.
I admire the tenacity of people like Amelia Earhart who did not attribute her successful aviation career to being the best, but instead, to simple and tenacious hard work. This is why too I am convinced that every student can learn and therefore make it my personal goal to support students in identifying the ways in which they personally learn best. I've experienced the greatest success with this approach while working as a one-on-one Special Education Paraprofessional for three years with a student who was both visually and auditorily impaired. I became adept at using manipulatives, as well as a variety of visual equipment to help the student successfully communicate as well as practice the material. It is in large part, due to this experience that I continue to approach learning opportunities with a keen focus on finding solutions and also am motivated to seek out opportunities to support the next generation's thinkers in their pursuit of becoming lifelong learners.
Undergraduate Degree: Berea College - Bachelor in Arts, Education
Graduate Degree: Bluegrass Community and Technical College - Certificate, Child Development
In the mornings you may find me watering plants, sowing seeds in my garden, or reading my "lazy gardening", book for tips. I garden as more than just a hobby. It is a way for me to care for the plants that sustain me. In the same vein, preparing nutritious food for my family is also of great interest to me. At any given time you may find me creating my own variation of a family favorite. Outside of food and everything plant-related, I love the outdoors; rollerblading, bicycling, racquetball, and long walks are just a few of the activities that I make time to do with my son.