Write an essay where you tell us about what drives you in your pursuit of your graduate degree.

Why am I interested in becoming an elementary educational arts teacher?

I’ve been interested in the arts all of my life. As a child, the joy of drawing and painting was a friend at my side. I fostered this childhood passion for the arts as a student, obtaining my BFA. As an adult, I saw a need for arts education within my community and established an arts organization "The Three Rivers Arts Council". I worked with the village of Channahon and our local schools. I learned so much from this experience working with parents and their children, helping to fill a void in arts education within my community.

In 2017, despite my life having been emerged with the arts, I found myself in the elementary classroom teaching Chess classes. Although I hoped to be an Arts teacher, I realized that my passion was with teaching itself and the rewarding interactions I had with faculty, students and the parents.

Teaching children has been a wonderful experience for me and I know it’s my calling. I feel purposeful when I am teaching children about creating, planning, dreaming and doing.

These young minds are full of potential and yearning for positive and meaningful input and direction. They are searching for a sense of fairness, recognition and reward. It is a privilege to be the adult example they are looking to for direction.

And, why art? Art is a catalyst into an important component of learning; creativity. Art, alongside standard learning methods, helps to provide a well rounded education experience. Sports use muscle power and coordination to get results, and academically the brain calls on the logical, analytical and orderly. Art calls on the heart, using the feeling of the day, the hopes of the future, or memories of the past to create work that can inspire others and establish personal confidence for the individual.

Art can create that feeling of accomplishment and achievement that may have been previously lacking in other subjects, or even at home.

When I look to the future, I see myself in the classroom bringing patience, enthusiasm, generosity and compassion to all students; while establishing trust, hope and dependability with the schools, community and parents.

In conclusion, I am eagerly looking forward to my journey toward full time teaching with St Xavier University’s Masters Alternative Licensure Program.

Amy from Illinois
St Xavier University Chicago Illinois