I am in the home stretch of earning my bachelor's degree in art education. As challenging as this journey has been, it has only stoked the fire of my passion for being an educator and confirmed that this is what I was born to do! Next semester, I will be doing my student teaching. As a non-traditional student with children to raise and bills to pay, this presents a new set of unique challenges, as I will be working full-time for no pay. Would you consider supporting me as I cross the finish line?
A little bit about me:
I have been an active teacher in various roles for most of my life. I started out as a babysitter, a Sunday school teacher, and a daycare worker in my teens. When I had children of my own, I added scout leader, home educator, and volunteer mentor-teacher to that list. Working with children has brought me imeasurable joy throughout those years (and has kept me young with my sense of humor very much intact)!
After going through a divorce and struggling as a single mom, I decided to get my degree to help me increase my income while giving my life more direction. I started by earning my BA in Fine Art. At that point, I began my substitute teaching career, and loved it so much I decided to return to school to become a licensed art teacher. This is my seventh year in college, and I have achieved semester honors and Dean's list recognition every semester. In Spring of 2017, I was awarded the prestigious IPFW Top 50 award. I have also been awarded two private donor scholarships and the Steven Smith Memorial scholarship. I have accomplished all of this while working multiple jobs and raising seven children.
A little bit about my goals and ambitions:
Over the course of completing my education degree, I have come to realize that I am drawn to working with kids who are considered at-risk and/or disadvantaged. The research I have done for my coursework has shown that the creative arts hold inherent value and have a demonstratively positive impact on student attitudes toward and achievement in academic subjects. Unfortunately, there is a shortage of teachers, particularly in high-needs schools. I want to change that! I want to be a beacon of hope and encouragement in the lives of my students. I want my art classroom to be a sanctuary for them, and a respite from the outside trauma, difficulty, and challenges they face.
What I need:
Many people are not aware that student teaching is a part of tuition costs and is a 16-week, full-time, requirement. Student teachers are strongly discouraged from working outside of their student teaching hours so that their focus can be solely on their responsibilities in the classroom. Unfortunately, I cannot put my living expenses on hold for five months. These include my rent, my phone, my car payment, my car insurance, and several medical bills incurred this year, which total approximately $1200.00 per month. I am also facing two weeks of no substitute teaching over Christmas break, which will also hurt me financially going into this endeavor.
It has truly taken a village to get me this far, and I am profoundly grateful to all who have already helped me get here. Please know that any help you can give will be paid forward tenfold into the lives of my students.
Thank you so much.
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