English teacher, department chair, dance team coach — North County School District in Bonne Terre, MO
Explain your career path
I teach high school English at my alma mater where I’m also the department chair, yearbook advisor, and coach of the state champion/nationally ranked North County Raiderettes.
What was your major at Southeast and how would you characterize the quality of that program to prospective students?
Secondary English Education - I knew I wanted to teach high school English. My teachers and mentors in high school always bragged so much on Southeast grads. I knew the education program there was second to none.
Why did you choose to attend Southeast?
See previous answer, plus... I always felt Southeast education grads had a leg up on everyone else. Besides the program being so renowned, I loved being “away” at school but still being relatively close to home (90 miles). The campus is also beautiful, and the area offers so much to do.
Who influenced you most during your time at Southeast?
I had so many great professors, but the three that stick out in my mind are Mary Harriet Talbut in the Dept. of Ed. and Dr. Peter Froehlich and Ms. Evelyn Menz in the English Dept.
Share your best college memory.
There are too many to name, but I loved representing my school and dancing at football and basketball games as a Southeast Sundancer.
If you were in Greek Life, the Honors Program or any other student organization, please tell us about that experience and how it impacted you.
I’m proud of my twelve year career as an English teacher and am looking forward to year thirteen. I’m so proud to teach at my home high school and help shape the next generations of North County Raiders. One of my biggest goals is to make English relatable and fun for my students and to always let them know that I care about the people they become just as much as I care about their grades. I’m the proud coach of the North County Raiderettes dance team. We are the current back-to-back overall Missouri Class 2A State Champions, hold nine state titles, and are currently 5th in the nation from the NDA High School National Championships.
What is the most important thing you learned while you were at Southeast?
I felt so prepared to enter the field and felt (and still feel) that I received a very well-rounded education. The freedom I had with my electives while still pursuing my degree allowed me to explore and focus on other interests at the same time.
Describe Southeast in three words.
Balanced, Fun, Successful
What advice would you give current students or recent graduates interested in pursuing a career in your professional field?
Though the education field seems to change by the minute, I’ve found it’s also very cyclical. Learn from your professors, keep good notes, and take it all in. At times, it may feel like, “This is all going to change within three years,” but learn from it and gather that good base at Southeast; you’ll easily be able to manage the ebbs and flows.