Eight Bluefield College senior teacher education students recently completed valuable career training through the school’s student-teacher program, which offers hands-on experience to students alongside veteran teachers in local classrooms.
The most recent BC teacher education students to complete the student-teaching experience during the spring 2017 semester included: Jara Armstrong of Princeton, West Virginia; Melissa Buchanan of Bluefield, Virginia; Kristin Ewing of Lynchburg, Virginia; Heather Hagerman Horn of Pilgrims Knob, Virginia; Emily Mallamaci of Bluefield, West Virginia; Shilah Stiff of Blacksburg, Virginia; Alexis Thompson of Bluefield, Virginia; and Haley Thompson of Bluefield, Virginia.
Teacher licensure training through Bluefield College’s Teacher Education Program is known for being an extremely rewarding experience that leaves graduating seniors well prepared as they enter teaching careers. It is through this experience that veteran teachers at various schools help the BC students grow in their skills and knowledge of how to work in the classroom setting.
“The Teacher Education Program made my years at Bluefield fun and challenging,” said Armstrong, who completed her student-teaching with PikeView Middle School and Tazewell High School. “The faculty really care about their students and the EDU (education) professors always try to make learning enjoyable.”
Armstrong is the daughter of William and Shirley Armstrong. She was home-schooled before attending Bluefield College. Buchanan, the daughter of Danny Buchanan, attended Graham High School. She completed her student-teaching at both Graham High and Springville Elementary School.
“It is truly like a second family to me,” said Buchanan about the professors and the experience she had in the BC School of Education. “I am so glad to be part of a program that has impacted my life so much.”
Ewing, the daughter of Ricky and Tammy Ewing, attended Brookville High School and completed her student-teaching at Abbs Valley-Boissevain Elementary School and Dudley Primary School. She spoke equally highly of the student-teaching experience and the BC Teacher Education Program.
“Bluefield College offered me more than just an education; it gave me life skills to carry with me throughout my teaching career,” said Ewing. “I am very thankful for my time in the education program at Bluefield, as I have been given the tools necessary to enable children to be successful in life.
Horn attended Twin Valley High School and graduated from Southwest Virginia Community College before attending Bluefield College, where she serves as president of the Art Club and a member of the Kappa Pi National Honor Art society. The daughter of Emory and Brenda Horn, she completed her student-teaching at Tazewell Middle and Tazewell High schools.
“The Teacher Education Program at Bluefield College has given me the opportunity to work with professors and others who have led and inspired me to reach my full potential,” said Horn, “not only as an aspiring teacher, but as a follower of Christ.”
Bluefield College has graduated well-trained teacher education majors since 1977. The 2017 class will join these countless alumni who have become exceptional in the field of education across the nation. Endorsed by the Virginia Department of Education and nationally accredited by the Teacher Education Accreditation Council (TEAC), BC’s Teacher Education Program offers undergraduate programs for teacher licensure in Elementary Education PreK-6, Secondary Education Grades 6-12 (biology, business, chemistry, English, history, information technology, mathematics, and history/social sciences), PreK-12 (art, health and physical education, instrumental music and vocal/choral music), and Special Education: General Curriculum, K-12. The college also offers a degree without teacher licensure in early childhood education and added an online master’s degree in education in 2013.
“I am grateful to have had such wonderful professors in the Bluefield College Teacher Education Program,” said Mallamaci, the daughter of Tony and Susan Mallamaci, who was home-schooled before attending BC and who completed her student-teaching at Dudley Primary School and Graham Middle School.
Stiff, the daughter of Robert and Wendy Schnitz, attended Blacksburg High School and completed her student-teaching at Abbs Valley-Boissevain Elementary School and Dudley Primary School.
“Bluefield College’s Teacher Education Program has given me the opportunity to help inspire children and have an impact on their lives,” said Stiff. “It has helped me develop skills that I will use as I begin my teaching career and for the rest of my life.”
The daughter of Chris and Cherie Thompson, Haley Thompson completed her student-teaching at Graham Intermediate and Dudley Primary schools. A home-school student before attending BC, she is a member of the college’s Alpha Chi National Honor Society.
“The endless help, positivity, and motivation I’ve received from Bluefield College’s Teacher Education Program has prepared me for my future career as a teacher,” she said.
Also the daughter of Chris and Cherie Thompson, Alexis Thompson completed her student-teaching at Abbs Valley-Boissevain Elementary School and Graham High School.
“I have not only received the knowledge that makes me feel confident about my future as an educator, but I have learned from my advisors and professors what it means to be a compassionate teacher,” said Alexis Thompson, who was home-schooled before attending BC. “I not only have been educated with courses that have prepared me for my own future classroom, but I also have been shown the warmth and kindness that I want to have as a teacher one day, as well.”