While education was not immediately what I chose as my career, it became evident during my senior in college that it was indeed my calling. Fortunately, I learned this about myself early enough to find a career that suits my passion and allows me to still find complete joy in what I do even after 27 years in the field.
I started teaching back in 1990 while in New Mexico. My first work was in Santa Fe and allowed me to become familiar with essential questions, inquiry based instruction, and portfolio assessment. In 1992, I moved to Idaho for my husband to complete his graduate program. While in Idaho, I had the chance to work not only directly in schools, but also with several privately funded educational support programs. It was here that I expanded my previous middle school experience to included elementary and adult education as well. It was a great opportunity to learn more about inter and intra agency cooperation and ways to include the whole community when it comes to the benefit of its youth and in particular youth who are at-risk.
1994 saw a return to New Mexico as well as a return to middle school. At this time, I also returned to school to study special education and earn an additional teaching credential in that area. I spent six wonderful years teaching at Roosevelt Middle School where I learned about team teaching, interdisciplinary units, inclusion, and in general just how amazing a professional learning community can be.
By the summer of 2000, it was time to move yet again. My husband took a position at what was then Gore Photonics in Lompoc and we have been here ever since. I began my career in Lompoc Unified as a resource teacher at Lompoc High School, and then in 2004 moved back over to middle school to teach at Vandenberg Middle School. While at Vandenberg, I taught resource, 7th and 8th English, as well as AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination).
My work in AVID involved a great deal of training and professional development. The role of site coordinator, grew into one of district director. It was through this role that I had a chance to take on additional leadership opportunities that inspired me to return to school yet again. After earning my masters, I was delighted to have the chance to serve as the assistant principal at Vandenberg Middle School for the past two years. I feel very blessed to have spent thirteen years there working with some incredible professionals and continuing to see the importance of a team approach.
That brings us to the year 2017, where I will embark on a new educational adventure as the principal of Miguelito. The school is a great place and has a positive culture that allows students to thrive. I am delighted to become a part of such an excellent team. Education truly is a game changer and I am proud to be part of efforts to close the achievement gap and allow all students to achieve their full potential.