M.A., Christian Studies, Duke Divinity
B.A., History/Religion, Presbyterian College
Who was your most influential teacher/coach/instructor when you were growing up? What was it about him/her that impacted you?
I had a history teacher who pushed me both academically and spiritually. He wouldn’t let me settle for just a good grade, but pushed me to think critically and to ask deeper questions about the world and my faith and the content we studied in class. He was always using the material we studied to ask bigger questions about the nature of humanity and what we are capable of as human beings. He also pressed me to think more deeply about my faith. He didn’t want me to settle for what other people had taught me about God or Christianity or morality. Rather, he encouraged me to pursue knowledge about God the way I would any academic subject, through challenging discussion and in-depth study. I was and am very thankful for his holistic approach to teaching his students about the history of the world we live in, and God’s place in it.
Why do you teach or work at a school?
I love the interaction with students I get to have every day. It is very energizing to be around students who are experiencing so many things for the first time, and are learning so much fresh academic content. Being in a classroom at Pisgah allows for such a perfect blend of academic stimulation and spiritual and relational experience. Getting to see students ask questions and become engaged in a subject that I am passionate about gives me energy and excitement about a topic that may have become more routine for me. It is very rewarding to help students academically, while also getting to know them personally, and enjoying who they are individually.
Describe your ideal day in the classroom.
An ideal day would be one where I come to class energized and excited to teach. I would be greeted by students who are energized, engaged, and attentive. The day would become increasingly more enjoyable by great classroom discussion, with a variety of opinions and thoughts shared by students who are passionate and excited about the subject matter we are covering. An ideal class period would have enough time for us to cover a lesson, with a few extra minutes to spare to cover questions students may have that wander slightly off the topic we are covering, just because they are interested. My best day would be a day where I have felt connections with students in the classroom, academically, or outside the classroom by hearing what upcoming activities students have going on, or what upcoming plans they have for the weekend, etc.