School has felt like home for me since I first stepped into a classroom many years ago as a student myself. I’ve been fortunate to have always known my goal in life: to become an educator, although at times it has felt as if though teaching is simply in my bones. Alongside a natural love for learning from and teaching others, famous authors, poets, and playwriters organically created a deep appreciation for literature and language within me. Literature showed me what it is to be human, what it is not to be human, and everything in between, and I felt it would be a crime for me to not share everything that I have learned about English Language Arts with future generations for them to learn from as well.
One aspect about City Academy, which is known for its small class sizes, that I enjoy is that it emboldens teachers and students to flourish because every student is known. Having strengths, recognizing and growing in weaknesses, and general individuality is encouraged at City Academy, which all certainly enhance the educational experience for all involved.
My inspiration for becoming a teacher was my mother who was also a teacher, and of course my first teacher.
I love traveling and I don’t have a favorite journey because I am always most excited by planning my next one.
I am a founding partner of City Academy and I have loved coming to work every day for the last 19 years because of the committed caring adults and students that I get to work with.
I have always wanted to learn another language. When I’m not teaching or making art, I spend my time reading. I have recently become a huge fan of both Gabriel García Márquez and Pablo Neruda. I would love to be able to read their work in the original Spanish language.
For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to go into education. However, when I started my BFA at the University of Utah, I did so not anticipating to teach art at the secondary level. It wasn’t until I took an art education class with Dr. Beth Krensky that I began to grasp the importance of sharing my love of art with others. It was in that class I first experienced the work of Tim Rollins and K.O.S. (Kids of Survival). After seeing the art generated by Rollins and his students, I felt the need to pursue teaching more seriously.
Teaching at City Academy has given me an opportunity to share my love of art and making with students and other colleagues in ways that are most authentic to me. This involves experimental drawing and sculpture. Because the classes tend to be on the smaller side, I am able to assess what individual students need, what their strengths are, and tailor my teaching to challenge and support each student’s artistic growth.
Awesome, fun, funny.
Going camping in the Colorado mountains with my family.
I always have something to do, it is always upbeat and I love talking with the students here.
A valuable lesson I’ve learned is to be grateful for what I have and to try to live in the moment.
I enjoy working behind the scenes at City Academy and doing my best to make things run smoothly for all.
One of the most valuable lessons I have learned comes from a quote by a very old lady I know. She says, “Everyone struggles, be kind.” A favorite memory from my childhood is a gift of experiences from my dad. Sometimes when I was feeling sad, he would get out two baseball mitts and a baseball and invite me to play catch with him. I was never very good at it but we had fun and it took my mind off of whatever was troubling me. It allowed me to face whatever was hard for me with more optimism and a fresh perspective when we were finished playing.
I love teaching at City Academy because the teachers and other staff I work with are truly remarkable people who support me in doing my best work just as they support the students in doing their best learning every day.
I am proud of my master’s in education, the fact that I am licensed to teach first grade through twelfth grade, and I am endorsed in theater, history, educational technology, and English as a second language. I also tested in the top 15 percent on my Praxis Teacher’s Exam in the country, and I won awards from the Salt Lake City School District in English and science as a middle school teacher. Obviously, I am proud all my hard work and studying and working hard, paid off. I am way more than just a theater teacher.
I am also immensely proud of my two amazing children! They are hardworking, talented and kind men.
That what we say, and do, as teachers impacts students for their whole lives. There is no such thing as a “meaningless moment.” All moments we have with children carry weight, and we can make learning a wonderful or painful experience. What we do and say as teachers matters. I want to make a good impact on children’s lives.
I love getting to know the students. Our low student-to-teacher numbers enable us to really get to know our kids. They are not just a number. I also love how welcoming we are and that we embrace students as individuals. We are an open, diverse and inclusive school. That is at the core of who I am as an educator, and City Academy not only embraces, but celebrates, that philosophy.
It is a tied between getting a master’s degree and being in the Mormon Tabernacle Choir.
Master’s degree – A master’s degree sounds far smarter than I think I am. It was a fun degree to get in spite of the huge work load. I learned things that I felt I should have known sooner; Much of what I learned was truly fascinating; and some was downright scary. Once I finished, I realized that although many of the women in my family have bachelor’s degrees only two of us have master’s degrees. That’s kind of cool.
Mormon Tabernacle Choir
I auditioned for the choir almost on a whim. The audition was hard and scary. I knew some people audition three or four times before they got in. Nothing musical has ever come easily for me, so I didn’t think this would. In the end I got in my first try. This choir was a lot of work, almost 20 hours a week. But it was an absolutely fabulous experience. I got to do things I had only dreamed of, including performing in some of the most famous concert halls in the world. It was a life-altering experience.
I want to learn to play a variety of musical instruments. My next two will be violin and cello. I have both instruments, but haven’t started on them yet. Previously I learned to play piano, organ, flute, clarinet, guitar, ukulele and harp. That doesn’t mean I am great at all of them, but have played them enough to be reasonably competent. Of course, I have also worked to learn to sing.
I love that I know most of the students in this school. My teaching here is student focused, NOT program focused. No fund raisers, no crazy Christmas time performance schedule, no choir tours to arrange, and no finances to keep (formals, school fees, tour payments, etc.).
I get to know and work with my students to help them become the best musician they can. I get to teach them about a variety of musical interests including piano, guitar, choir, composition, history and of course how all of this affects their brain.
I don’t think very much about being proud of accomplishments, I suppose, but I think one thing I did at university was worth being proud of because it triggered so many unexpectedly wonderful happenings in my life: I knew I could not have a second fully paid Honor’s scholarship to a study abroad program, but I applied anyway, crunching in two double intensive German courses in order to be eligible. This led to me getting that scholarship after all, traveling to Europe for the first time in my life: studying in Vienna, Austria for a summer, finishing my bachelor’s degree not only in French but in German as well, then off to working in Germany to learn German better, receiving a Fulbright Scholarship, getting married and staying in Europe for 22 years – oh my! My life changed. Oops.
My favorite journey started in the middle of the night in Berlin (Iron Curtain times…), driving through East Germany, where Russian guards took my passport for five hours, then through West Germany where the best part of the journey was to come: I got off the train at the French border, walked across a bridge into France, took meandering country trains into Brittany and the forest of Brocéliande of Arthurian legend. There, instead of traveling around France hitting all of the tourist spots, I changed my itinerary. I ended up staying for two weeks inside the forest, where I was shown circles of standing stones by a forest dweller, saw the tomb of Merlin, got teased by fairies as I tried to escape sorceress Morgaine’s Vale of No Return (entering was simple, but I was apparently not pure enough of heart to leave easily). When I finally emerged, I drank from the natural Spring of Bérenton, unwittingly causing a tumultuous torrential rain to occur, took refuge under the 450-plus year old Master Beech tree of Ponthus until it would tolerate me no longer and was extremely happy to have a roof over my head that night.
I really just like teaching the students here at City Academy because the subjects I teach inherently lead students to think in different ways than they ever have before, (maybe eat, drink and feel in different ways than they ever would have believed possible!) which is always very exciting for me to be a part of.
One of the most valuable things I’ve learned is how to learn for myself.
My favorite journey is the journey I am taking through life, which I hope has still a lot to offer.
What I like about teaching at City Academy is being able to offer my students the tools that they may need to learn from during their journey through their life.
For 23 years of my teaching in Ukraine, five of my former students have become teachers of HIstory/ESL–the subjects I taught them at school. I hope to inspire some American students as well!
I’ve become a teacher in memory of those awesome people who’ve done their best educating and teaching me HOW TO BE HAPPY AT SCHOOL. It was not that easy to work with me during my school time! It’s my tribute to them and my promise to always keep to make at least one more shy and non-socialized kid feel happy and safe at school.
I’m still new here but I already love the whole atmosphere and spirit of City Academy: creative, researching, open-minded, sincere and family-like. It’s a true Academy of Knowledge and Talent and a wonderful place to teach!
I was inspired by many amazing teachers that I had throughout middle and high school. Mrs. Coon, my AP Literature teacher, inspired me to embrace my passion for literature and writing. That passion is something I strive to pass on to my own students.
I love the small class sizes and seminar-style Cambridge courses. I feel like I am able to get to know each and every student that I teach.
The sum of many little things matter much, much more than any big one.
I love to share my knowledge with students because they will often share their knowledge with me.
The cooperative nature and dedication that all the staff have ensure City Academy is a safe, intuitive and interesting place for all students to further their education and personal development.
I love to travel internationally and see different customs and cultures so my bucket list of trips to take include; England, Australia and Africa. My trips to Istanbul, Germany, and Paris have been amazing.
I would love to learn how to make all 18 holes in golf connect to an awesome score. My tendency is to play well for a few holes, blowup on a hole and then try to get back on track for a decent round of golf.
I really like working at City Academy because I have the opportunity to meet so many new students and work with them on areas such as college and careers or simply overcoming obstacles that they are faced with in life.
An item on my bucket list that I hope to accomplish is to volunteer for Ski Patrol at a local ski resort.
I have always excelled at athletics and it was a big part of my life growing up. I also have a passion for health and living an active lifestyle. It brings me a sense of fulfillment and joy when I have the opportunity to help others succeed, and I love sharing my passions with those around me. That’s why I chose teaching as a profession.
What I enjoy about teaching at City Academy is the opportunity to get to know students on a more personalized level. I feel that City Academy is a learning community where our students have access to a more customized learning experience based on their abilities and needs.
Backpack all of Eastern Europe.
When my sister and I were little, every weekend my parents would take us to the beach in Honduras and we would always go snorkeling and collect sea shells.
What I love working at City Academy is the positive environment there is, and the dedication and commitment the staff and teachers have for every student to graduate and pursue higher education.
I am very proud of my accomplishments as a teacher and an artist. More specifically, I am proud that I received a scholarship to Pratt Institute in Brooklyn in 2012. I am also proud of the fact that I won First Place in the Statewide Ogden Eccles Art Show in 2009. That was a huge honor and made me feel proud in my accomplishments. Another accomplishment I am proud of is the fact that when I first came to City Academy, there was no art room, and only a part-time art teacher position, I am proud to have grown City Academy’s Art Department to the great place where it is today, which includes one full- and one part-time art teacher, a fully functional art classroom with all the supplies we need, and a range of over 75 art students!
My father and mother are both teachers, and I always loved art, so it seemed like the logical solution. I also love people and sharing my passion for art with students. I love being in the same space of admiration for something visual as my students and we are all appreciating the same thing. That symbiosis is such a fun place to be!
What I love about City Academy is that it’s so inclusive. I love knowing all my students as well as the vast majority of students in the building. I love knowing all my fellow faculty members better than I ever did at my other school. I am proud that our program has grown so much and I love that it is now a part of City Academy culture. It is a great school!
The accomplishments I am most proud of are the ones that took the most effort and courage: diving off 30-foot cliffs, finishing a marathon with a bad knee, earning my degree while raising three sons by myself, becoming fluent in another language, and simply overcoming life’s tough challenges.
My unofficial bucket list includes: becoming truly fluent in Russian and learning other languages; exploring more of the world and its cultures; learning how to cook a greater variety of ethnic foods; learning how to scuba dive; taking horseback riding lessons and ballroom dance classes (not together-J); climbing some more mountains… There’s just too much to do!
One feature I like about teaching here at City Academy is the smaller classes which allow me to get to know the students better and to offer more individualized attention when needed. Another important and enjoyable aspect of working here is the ability to work with and have constant collaboration with my colleagues.
Enthusiastic. Happy. Old.
My seven children and their children. Need I say more?
A Ph.D. I’m half way.
Getting my Eagle Scout Award and all that goes with it.
Quantum mechanics. The math of the universe fascinates me.
Come what may and love it.
My math teachers–every one of them.
Besides life, I love to hike in the Windrivers.
Patrick McManus, Isaac Newton, and Mormon
This is a no brainer. THE STUDENTS!!!
Visiting all the national parks in Utah is definitely on my bucket list–there are so many in this one state!
I decided to become a teacher when I helped teach my 3-year-old brother learn how to read. I would race home from 3rd grade every day, super excited to work with him; that’s when I realized I would love to teach when I grew up.
Working at City Academy is fabulous because the students and faculty create the environment they want to be in; everyone is willing to jump in and make themselves and the school community better every day.
My favorite writers are Kim Stanley Robinson, Neal Stephenson, Lawrence Block, Donald Westlake, Terry Pratchett, Robert Frost, Taylor Mali, Atul Gawande, Malcolm Gladwell, Stephen Jay Gould, Patrick McManus, Dave Barry, Bill Watterson, Garry Trudeau, Randall Munroe, Barack Obama, Martin Luther King, Jr., Francesca Lia Block, Shannon Hale, and Daniel Pinkwater.
I loved the time I spent fishing with my father. It was a quiet, peaceful time on a beautiful river, rarely interrupted by fish. We often came home with a bucket of cherries.
I love the power each person at City Academy has to shape the school. Everybody can take on as much responsibility as they can handle, and grow to meet the challenge.