Elementary Ed, 2011
Middle School Reading/Writing Teacher, Network of International Schools
La Paz, Bolivia
What do you do in your current job and what do you enjoy about it?
In my job I work with middle-upper class Bolivians (70%) and missionary/international (30%) 6-8 grade students at Highlands International School (HIS). HIS is part of Network of International Christian Schools and is an American-style school located in La Paz, Bolivia. I teach reading and writing in English using the USA Common Core Standards. I love that I get to take my culture to another country and learn about my students' culture simultaneously. I also love that I get to openly share the gospel with my students, disciple them, and be a role model for them.
How did your Judson experience influence you professionally? What were your favorite parts of being a Judson student?
Judson gave me many opportunities to get involved that really developed my leadership. Through these experiences, I was better prepared to lead a classroom of students and their parents. My favorite spiritual part of Judson was leading a missions team to Denver my senior year to serve at Mount Saint Vincent Home. My favorite class was Dr. Layne's Children's Literature class. Not only did I love learning about the books, but beyond that Dr. Layne demanded all-around excellence. I never wanted to work so hard for someone in my life. My favorite professors were in the School of Education (SoE). I worked there all four years of my college experience, and that group became more than professors to me. I also loved Professor Schmidt in the Communication Arts Department and wish I would have had time to take more classes with her. My favorite peers were my JSO teammates, my roommates in Volkman, and my SoE buddies. I was always looking for ways to be social and had lots of people to connect with. Fun, laughter, and good moments were never lacking!
What are the strengths of your major/program at Judson?
The School of Education is incredible. The program gets students into local schools right away. The professors are up to date with all of the current happenings in education. The facility has the most up to date technology that you might find in the classroom, which gives students moments to practice on it and then use it when they enter the professional world as a knowledgeable teacher. The SoE also informs students about opportunities to grow professionally outside of Judson through conferences and professional development classes in the Chicago area. Finally, one of the best strengths of the SoE is their loving, God-following professors. They ALWAYS have time for students and help out in any way they can.
What advice can you give to current and prospective students about their time at Judson?
My advice is get your feet wet. If you want to get a lot out of your college experience, don't be afraid to get involved by really investing in the community while you are there - serve in a leadership position, play intramurals or join an athletic program, go on a mission trip. I've never met another school like Judson that takes such pride in its community - it's there - just dive in!