Teachers have a different view than many in the community. They know their students’ unique strengths, needs, and interests. They understand the community and the challenges it faces, and are knowledgeable about opportunities beyond the local community. I think teachers have a perspective that allows them to be leaders within their schools, community, and state and national discussions on education.”

Susan’s Story

Originally from upstate New York, Susan enjoys spending time outdoors. After earning a Bachelor of Arts in environmental science from Boston University, she relocated to California to work as a support coordinator and environmental educator at an outdoor environmental education program. Susan also spent two years as an AmeriCorps member, doing watershed management and salmon restoration work in Maine and California, respectively. Highlights from her work include diving the Salmon River to count chinook and lighting prescribed fires to restore health to fire-adapted environments.

While Susan enjoyed her various environmental science jobs, and the opportunities for informal teaching that they afforded, she realized that she could build on those limited field experiences and create additional opportunities for learning about the earth and the environment by studying it directly, if she had her own classroom. This realization led her to earn a Master of Arts in Teaching from Cornell University.

Susan’s educational philosophy encourages learning outside of the classroom.

In her spare time, Susan likes hiking, camping, backpacking, cycling and baking. She is an accomplished athlete who has successfully completed an Olympic distance triathlon and has biked across Maine to raise money for lung health.