Amanda Neary ’06
I am a 4th grade teacher at Hinesburg Community School, and I chose Saint Michael’s College back in 2002 for my master’s program because of the small class sizes. I heard wonderful things about the education program from another colleague at the time and thought that it would be a nice fit. I really enjoyed my research and thesis work in 2005 and 2006.
One of my favorite times of the school day is when I read to my students. My read aloud is a special time each day and that is what I chose to focus my thesis work around. I loved the whole process and was able to use what I was working on at Saint Michael’s and bring it directly to my classroom. I found that throughout all of my graduate work, I was able to take what I had learned and then use it in my teaching practice. As far as being where I had hoped to be in this time of my life and career, I would say that that is definitely the case.
From 2012 to 2017, I left my career in education to be at home with my son and older step-children. During that time, I still maintained my professional development through Saint Michael’s. I was able to keep fresh with what was currently happening in the classroom, even though my teaching practice had been put on hold. When I entered the classroom again, I had many years already under my belt, but I also had some great professional opportunities from the graduate classes I had taken. Some advice I would offer to others would be to pace yourselves and allow yourself to dive deep into the learning. Having your own classroom and being part of a school district before entering the education graduate program is essential.
To read about how Amanda Neary went above and beyond for her students during the COVID-19 pandemic, click here: https://www.smcvt.edu/about-smc/news/2020/june/alumna-teacher-fills-virtual-classroom-with-love-support/