From student to teacher
Recent graduate Hannah Rice Regennitter is preparing for a new school year—this time, as the teacher! This August, she will begin a new job as an English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) teacher at West End Elementary School in Rome, Ga.
As an early childhood education major, Hannah centered her Berry experience around preparing for her new career. In her education classes, she found mentors in Clinical Assistant Professors of Teacher Education Victor Morgan and Fran Roe.
“My very first education class at Berry was taught by Dr. Morgan,” Hannah recalls. “He spent a great deal of time getting to know us. He ingrained into us a James P. Comer quote: ‘No significant learning occurs without a significant relationship.’ It’s a reminder to invest in student lives, because that is the only way they will learn. Another professor that stands out in my mind is Dr. Roe. She has influenced me to be my very best and always be there for my students.”
Hannah also gained valuable experiences outside of her classes. She worked in the Admission Office the summer before her freshman year, where she answered calls, conducted tours and interacted with high school students and parents. She later held positions at the Berry College Elementary School and the Child Development Center on campus working with young children.
She and other education students also had the opportunity to both mentor local students and be mentored by local teachers through Kappa Delta Pi, an international honor society in education. They participated in events such as Literacy Alive!, where they read to students in the Rome community and learned firsthand from experienced teachers. Her hard work led her to win the Delta Kappa Gamma award, which recognizes a female graduating senior who is majoring in education with superior scholarship and plans to teach in the Rome area.
All these opportunities prepared Hannah for her new position at West End Elementary, where she will help students of all grade levels learn English.
“Berry has given me more than I could have ever hoped for. I have made friendships that will last a lifetime. I have superior mentors that I know I can count on for advice and leadership for many years down the road. I have learned valuable information related to my field of interest. I have had real life, hands-on experiences to support my learning,” Hannah says. “Since my freshman year, I had been learning, practicing and experiencing everything I needed to know to become an outstanding teacher. Berry made a difference in my life as a teacher, thus helping me make a difference in the lives of my future students.”
Written by junior Shannon Rainey