I enjoyed growing up in the beautiful city of Madison, and I graduated from Memorial High School in 2013. In high school I had the opportunity to sing in the Madison Youth Choirs and play on the tennis team and I especially enjoyed my time volunteering for my school's Peer Partner program which connected mentally and physically disabled high school students with opportunities they might not otherwise have, such as participating in the Race for the Cure fundraiser! As I went on to college, I knew that I wanted to further my experiences of community outreach and I found an incredible opportunity at UW-Madison in the Teacher Education program. This past semester I applied for a position in Early Childhood Education, and recently found out that I've been accepted into the program beginning this fall!
Presently I have been taking classes at the UW-Madison that have allowed me to partake in service learning each week as part of the curriculum. I volunteered in a third grade classroom teaching small groups of children math skills and helping students in the class practice their reading skills as well. My professional goals include furthering my education at UW-Madison and after graduation I plan to go on to a teaching position with children ages 5-8. I am looking forward to being able to work with children who may be economically disadvantaged, to help them receive an education that will allow them to then be able to help others around them in a similar way. Education is such an important part of our community and my vision for the future is to reach as many children as possible to help make a difference in their lives and to open doors for them the way that my teachers did for me.
The Arndt Family Scholarship is making this vision a reality for me. I knew that I wanted to go to college from a young age, however, my acceptance to UW-Madison was overshadowed by the cost of attending such a great university. With the help of this scholarship, I am able to focus on academics and spend my time learning to be the best teacher I can through my classes, as well as continue to allocate a portion of my time to volunteering.
I have so much gratitude for the Arndt family for making my dream of attending UW-Madison a reality, and this scholarship has in turn helped many others besides myself! The volunteer work that I am now able to do has built community through the Hoofer Riding Club, allowing community members, youth, and college students to come together with affordable (or for the youth on scholarships - free) camps and riding lessons during the summer. There are very few barns in the area that have options for people who may not have a car, or who may not have the money to pay for lessons, to be able to experience a connection with these gentle animals. I enjoy being part of that by teaching the lessons, as well as contributing through my role as Vice President of the club.
Moreover this scholarship has allowed me to go beyond my courses and be able to learn from teaching in the elementary classroom with students from many backgrounds, which has been my most rewarding work so far. What drew me to teaching was the opportunity to see a child's face light up when they understood how to solve math problems, or when they realized that they could read an entire page out loud and no longer need help sounding out words. That kind of achievement and pride that I have witnessed and that I strive to foster in all the students I work with is the reason that I want to teach, and is also why I am so thankful for the opportunity that the Arndt family has given me to attend UW-Madison and to complete the excellent elementary education program here.