"...what has stayed constant is my belief that all humans are inherently valuable, capable, and exceptional. Teachers have the responsibility and the privilege of helping students find those qualities in themselves and learn how to use them to choose their own path in life."
How did you first become interested in teaching?
After college I was still unsure of what I wanted to do with myself but a friend who knew me well was convinced I’d be a good teacher and invited me to work as an educational assistant in the SPED department at her school. I immediately connected with special education as an opportunity to celebrate individual differences and transform the one-size-fits-all approach that is still present in many classrooms.
What is your philosophy of teaching?
My teaching philosophy is continually evolving, but I suppose what has stayed constant is my belief that all humans are inherently valuable, capable, and exceptional. Teachers have the responsibility and the privilege of helping students find those qualities in themselves and learn how to use them to choose their own path in life.
What types of candidates do you hope/recommend to pursue one of our special education programs?
I’d hope that anyone considering the field of special education has a strong sense of responsibility, justice, resilience, and joy. I’d recommend that anyone considering any of our higher education programs have an open mind, a curious spirit, and the willingness to develop a strong set of time management skills.
What words of advice would you give to people looking to pursue the program/profession?
It might feel like a sprint, but it’s actually a marathon. It’s okay to pace yourself – don’t try to do it all, all the time. It’s easy to burn out if you don’t prioritize your well-being in the long term.
Describe your own road to higher education.
Long, winding, and ultimately, rewarding.
What are your research interests?
Interdisciplinary knowledge development & research, emotional & behavioral differences, ADHD, and inclusive practices
What are your goals/future plans?
Goals: Taking my work email account off of my iPhone.
Future plans: Reading work emails on my iPhone.
What do you like to do outside of education?
A perfect day for me would include baking delicious forms of carbohydrates in the morning, a long walk on Waimānalo beach with my dog, a raucous dinner party with brilliant friends, and falling asleep with a book still in my hands. And wine.
Anything else you would like to share?
Teach with humility, authenticity, and generosity. Learn with intensity and creativity.