Graduate Student Blog

Knowing Your Students Individually is Critical to a Teacher’s Success [Alumni Case Study]

Prefer working with kids than in an office

Before becoming a teacher, I worked in public relations for 2.5 years for the City of Atlanta’s Housing Office and Turner Enterprises. Once I realized I didn’t like working in offices, I became a substitute teacher at the elementary school I attended. The kids loved me… more »

Elementary Teacher Committed to Making a Difference in Urban Schools [Alumni Case Study]

Teaching was not a career I wanted to pursue

I was born and raised in Atlanta and attended several urban schools. Even though I struggled as a student, I had a great experience. After returning home from college, I spent a couple of years working as a barista, medical assistant and a nanny. Through… more »

Culturally Responsive Teaching Fuels Urban Educator [Alumni Case Study]

My life’s calling is to work with kids

Prior to moving to Atlanta with my wife, I worked with kids as a youth minister. While this was rewarding, I wanted a career working with young people in a different capacity. After settling into Atlanta’s West End neighborhood, I initially volunteered in a fifth grade… more »

From Communications to PE Teacher [Alumni Case Study]

Intended to have a career in radio broadcasting

I moved to Atlanta after graduating from college to pursue a career in communications given the city’s reputation for being a media magnet. I quickly discovered, however, that getting my foot in the door had more to do with who you know, not what you know.… more »

PE Teacher Wins More Time with Students [Alumni Case Study]

Motivated by passion for movement and health

After graduating from college, I worked as an outdoor recreation therapist providing wilderness therapy, and worked with children recovering from injury in outpatient transition care for 3.5 years. These experiences motivated me to return to school to become a PE teacher because I loved working with kids… more »

Former PE Teacher Pursuing Ph.D. to Train the Next Generation of Teachers [Alumni Case Study]

Returned to school after six years of teaching

I was very involved with sports throughout my youth and understood the value of staying active. After graduating from college, I immediately began working as a K-8 PE teacher and taught at the same school for six years. One year, I was team teaching with a… more »

Teacher Preparation Program Prepared Special Education Teacher to Excel [Alumni Case Study]

Paraprofessional experience led to teaching

After graduating from college I worked as a counselor for one year at a nonprofit serving youth with emotional and behavioral problems. Although I enjoyed working with the children, the position wasn’t right for me, so I became a paraprofessional and taught high school students who where moderately and… more »

First-Generation College Graduate Finds Passion as Special Education Teacher [Alumni Case Study]

I wanted to become a nurse

Originally, I majored in nursing at a technical college, but after enrolling at Georgia State to complete my bachelor’s degree, none of my prerequisite courses were transferable. As I pondered what to do next, I became a substitute teacher and noticed several open positions for special education instructors. Over… more »

Special Education Teacher Wants to Research Students with Learning Disabilities and High IQ [Alumni Case Study]

Teaching special education sparked in childhood

From the time I was about seven years old, I wanted to be a special education teacher because I thought students with special needs were overlooked. By becoming a teacher, I believed I could help bring out their potential. During my senior year in high school, I participated… more »

Paraprofessional Discovers Calling as Special Education Teacher [Alumni Case Study]

What good is money if you’re not happy

During college I joined the Army and served six years as a personnel specialist. My main objective for going to college was to work in business, make money and travel. After graduating, I worked for a couple of corporate brands, but the idea of making lots… more »