Former Art Teacher, now Instructional Coach

Jamie Scott, Art Department Chair

Ellen Gibson

Jamie Scott, Art Department Chair

Mikayla Jordan, Writer

1. Why did you want to have a career as an educator?

“Since grade school age, I always felt driven to be in a career of either medicine or
education which ultimately worked in my favor in the education field. I always felt a
strong urge to serve or take care of people. After getting out of school I took a job in
accounting and was very successful in that craft moving up multiple ranks. I was
very fortunate in that career. While thankful for [my] time in accounting, I felt a drive
to be doing something that was of more benefit to real people, rather than a company.
Over time, I finally got the courage to part ways with my job in accounting and went
back to school to get her teaching degree.”

2. Where did you start your educational career?

“I attended Westminster college, then got my teaching degree at Maryville
University here in St. Louis.”

3. What has your journey to get to where you are now been like? What was
Difficult? What was easy?

“I think one of the noblest professions in the world is helping children grow up to be adults, I mean what better thing could you do? The hard part is teachers walk into the job wanting to do [this] for other people and no matter what we do, it never feels like enough. For example, if kids aren’t performing well in class you want to know what you could be doing differently. Maybe a school’s test scores aren’t great and the board wants to know what the school is doing or not doing… I was asked to step up into a leadership role which excited [me] and gave me hope that being in that position she could guide and support teachers in making things better in the classroom. The easiest part for me is the students. It is nearly impossible to not fall in love with your students, their minds are just so fun. Depending on how old you are, most of us feel like a parent or grandparent to every kid that walks in that door. And that’s the easiest part [is that] it’s easy to care about these young people who are growing up.”

4. Why did you want to be an educator in the arts specifically?

“I always believed and found out later through research that students who study any of
the arts develop much more flexible and powerful minds. I wanted to contribute to
those flexible and powerful minds.”

5. Why did you want to work at GCAA?

“At my previous job as an educator, the school district was starting to cut classes in the arts where I eventually grew to become unhappy. A position opened up here at GCAA and I really wanted to see what it would be like to work at a school where arts is the main focus instead of a peripheral thought.”