- Go out.
- Have Fun.
- Eat Well.
- Get Rest.
Interviewed by Fatima Az-Zahraa Dadou
To get started, please tell a bit about yourself and how you became Executive Director at Calvert.
I studied film production and directing in my undergraduate university, but have always had an affinity toward education. I entered the field of education through a teacher program called Teach for America. I taught elementary school for a number of years before I delved into the world of online education and homeschooling as a curriculum specialist and instructional designer for a virtual school. I enjoy thinking outside the box and developing creative paths for students to learn through technology and non-traditional classrooms. I was attracted to Calvert because it provides a rigorous academic program with a legacy of success and student achievement. I assumed the role of School Administrator (Principal) of the Calvert Academies in late August, and I am thrilled to be a part of a thriving new addition to Calvert.
What are some of the roles you have at Calvert and which do you enjoy?
I began working for Calvert Education in 2009 as a Senior Instructional Designer and Manager of Curriculum Development. In these roles, I developed interactive lessons and activities, and I oversaw all the writing of new courses and enhancements to existing courses in Calvert’s K-8 program.
In 2012, I began working for Maryland Public Television, and then returned to Calvert in April of 2015 in the role of Curriculum Manager, where I continue to oversee the development of Calvert courses. I enjoy this work because it allows me to be creative about how best to deliver and support learning for students.
I also manage professional development for other virtual charter and private schools that use Calvert’s courses. I enjoy this role because it allows me to see how different schools implement the Calvert program.
The most recent addition to the many hats I wear at Calvert is that of School Administrator of the Calvert Academies, where I oversee the Calvert Academy Lower School, Calvert Academy Middle School, and the Calvert Academy High School programs. I enjoy ensuring that each of these programs operates smoothly and that students are successful. My favorite part about leading the Calvert Academies is learning about all the amazing projects and accomplishments of our students.
What are your plans for the future on a personal and professional level?
One of my personal plans for the near future is to travel to Brazil with my husband and two boys for the 2016 Olympics in Rio de Janeiro. My family has been preparing for this trip since the last summer Olympics and we are super excited to be on our way.
Professionally, I would love to pursue game development and plan to complete a few courses on the topic, so that I may be able to incorporate more game-based learning in Calvert courses.
What do you think makes the Calvert program unique and sets it apart from other homeschooling programs?
Calvert is unique because of the personal contact and relationships that students build with their virtual teachers and Calvert Education staff.
A lot of times, high school students can be overwhelmed and frustrated with all their homework. What words of encouragement could you give them? How would you advise them to deal with the stress of being a high school student?
Hard work does pay off, and I am not referring to honors, awards, or getting into the best colleges and universities (which are also great benefits of working hard), but it pays off because it builds character, resilience, and strength that can only be accomplished through hard work.
5 Tips for Dealing with High School Stress
Is there anything else you would like to say or include in this interview that we haven't yet discussed?
It is a pleasure to have the opportunity to contribute to the Calvert Voices newspaper. I have been working behind the scenes in education for over 10 years now, and I appreciate any chance to communicate directly with students.
I’ll conclude with one of my favorite quotes:
A publication created by Calvert High School students for the Calvert School community.