UCF’s College of Community Innovation and Education has provided me with countless meaningful opportunities to serve children across Central Florida and the addition of PedsAcademy is no exception. While working towards my B.S. in Elementary Education, I have had the opportunity to spend countless hours in classrooms across Orange and Seminole counties. Before relocating to Orlando, my experience working with children started with a job at my own elementary school in Elberta, Alabama as an after-school-care teacher. In addition, I worked for Girl Scouts USA recruiting girls in Central Florida to join the organization’s mission to change the world. Children are my passion, so it’s no wonder why I jumped at the opportunity to bring the joy of education to the patients of Nemours.
Since discovering my passion for teaching, my knowledge and perspective of pedagogy have transformed drastically. During my internship at Nemours Children’s Hospital, I developed a much deeper understanding of what it means to be an educator. Through my experience, I was able to set realistic goals for myself as a teacher, embrace challenges and turn them into teachable moments for myself and my students. I’ll take this experience with me and apply what I’ve learned from the children at Nemours throughout my career.
I chose to apply for this internship because I was moved by the mission to provide all children with a meaningful education. Not only have we been able to keep students on track with their grade level, but in many cases, we have helped improve their working memory and fine motor skills while they undergo treatment. The opportunity to work with children at the hospital has been a one-of-a-kind experience for us to explore the different ways in which we can facilitate learning without relying on pencils and paper.
This experience means the world to the children, their parents, and the educators of Nemours Children’s Hospital. The children are overjoyed at the sight of the STEM resources we provide and they are eager to learn through the experience. We believe that all children deserve the chance to be students. Thanks to PedsAcademy, this is now possible.