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Milestones in My Career in Education

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    Undergraduate Years

    During my time at the University of Florida, the only education courses I took were about teaching English as a second language. I thought I might try to travel and teach abroad after college, but I never did. I had no idea at the time that my career path would involve teaching writing, working with college administration, and eventually studying online learning. At the time, I thought I would end up getting a PhD to become a professor.
  • ESL Tutor

    As an undergrad at UF, I took a couple of teaching English as a second language classes, and as part of that, I had to volunteer as a language partner for ESL students. It was so much fun just to sit and engage with people from various places. I also learned to become aware of social customs from other countries. It wasn't exactly teaching, but I did learn about how to engage people in order for them to learn.
  • Substitute Teaching

    One of the jobs I got after graduating was to become a substitute teacher in Gainesville. I had a variety of adventures, not all enjoyable, until I learned that the best class for me was gym. It was the only place my middle schoolers liked to be, so they behaved and had fun. Luckily for me, there were four gym teachers at the school I substituted for, and one was often missing. I enjoyed the camaraderie of the other teachers, and I learned that enjoyment is an important aspect of education.
  • My First Job Teaching

    My First Job Teaching
    About a year after I graduated with my BA in English from UF, I still had no set career path. Somewhat randomly, I applied to an add for a Prep Reading Adjunct Instructor at Santa Fe College. Thus, my career in education began. It was an amazing experience. Teaching was definitely the toughest job I'd had up to that point. Everyday was a challenge.
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    Acupuncture School

    I went to two different acupuncture colleges, one in New York City and the other in Gainesville, Florida. During this time, I supported myself by teaching. I thought that I would leave the field of education behind me and pursue a career in acupuncture.
  • Teacher's Aid in Brooklyn

    Teacher's Aid in Brooklyn
    While I was in acupuncture school in New York City, I had a work study job as a teacher's aid in a 4th grade class for just a few months. My main task was to help a Haitian boy study English as the school didn't really have resources for this. I had never worked with children before, and I was surprised at how the curriculum was devised in such a way as to make things boring and repetitive. So many worksheets!
  • Return to Santa Fe College

    Return to Santa Fe College
    Once I transferred from an acupuncture college in New York to one in Gainesville, I got my old adjunct teaching job back. This time around, I also became a tutor in the GED lab. This job was probably my favorite education-related experience that I've ever had. The students were really trying to improve their lives and achieve great dreams, and I was happy to be a part of that.
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    Florida State College at Jacksonville

    After realizing that I could not have a successful career in acupuncture, I returned to the field of education, which I found very rewarding. I was grateful that I was able to find work in several capacities at FSCJ. I still work there, and I hope that what I do helps students achieve their academic goals.
  • Teaching at FSCJ

    Teaching at FSCJ
    After I graduated from acupuncture college, I moved to Jacksonville, and I started teaching writing classes at Florida State College at Jacksonville. I saw that life for my Jacksonville students was different than for students I taught at Santa Fe College just by the nature of living in a bigger city that was not a college town. These students had more responsibilities outside of the classroom, so education was more challenging. I tried to work with them and help them find a balance.
  • A Class on Acupuncture Theory

    A Class on Acupuncture Theory
    During this time, I was trying to develop my own acupuncture business and teaching on the side in order to support myself. On only one occasion did I blend these two fields when I accepted a temporary position to teach the senior class of my acupuncture college information they would need for their board exams. It was rewarding to utilize my teaching skills in a new area.
  • Writing Tutor

    Writing Tutor
    After working as an adjunct at FSCJ for several years, I began work as a part-time tutor helping the same prep writing students I was teaching. I worked with students on an individual basis to help them improve their college writing skills, and I reviewed their papers. While I wasn't doing anything new in this position, it helped pave the way for me to get a full time job with the college later.
  • Project Coordinator

    Project Coordinator
    I realized I couldn't make it as a full time acupuncturist, so I threw myself fully into the field of education. I was able to find a job within the online education department of FSCJ. I learned how to hire, train, and evaluate adjunct faculty; schedule courses in the college's computer system; and do other administrative tasks necessary for the operation of our online department. I found out what it is like to support students from the back end of the college.
  • Started Graduate Certificate in eLearning

    Started Graduate Certificate in eLearning
    After sharing an office space with a bunch of instructional designers, I saw that not only were those people in high demand, but they also had more freedom in how they worked since they provided unique technical skills. I decided that I wanted to change the focus of my career from administration to developing online learning. I'm excited about the almost limitless possibilities this career offers while remaining in the field of education.