Friday, November 1, 2013

Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship, Ball State University
Alumni Spotlight
Caroline Chow


Why did you choose Ball State for your graduate study?
The Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship was offered through Ball State as well as several other schools in Indiana. However, I heard that the teaching program at Ball State was excellent. It also was close to where my sister was attending her undergraduate study and I wanted to stay close to family.

What would you tell incoming students why Ball State is a great place to earn a graduate degree?
The professors we had were fantastic and because of the size of our cohort, we were able to build an actual relationship with them. We received a lot of one-on-one time and as a result the program felt very personalized.

How is Ball State preparing you for your teaching career?
The opportunity to do a lot of hands-on learning was a huge benefit. During the summer, we were able to hang out with students through the Boys and Girls Club and get to know the community we were to serve in during the school year. The program also allowed us to have a full year of student teaching, which allowed us to spend the entire school year developing relationships with the students as well as practice teaching. The experiences I had while at Muncie Southside High School were invaluable and rewarding.

Describe your graduate school experience in one word. 
Immersion

What has the graduate school experience at Ball State revealed to you about yourself?  What has it revealed that surprised you?
I had a lot more in me than I thought. I was very intimidated and overwhelmed by this program at the beginning. However, the professors and the other Fellows helped me tackle the seemingly impossible year a little bit at a time. There were times that I thought I would not be able to make it through the year, but here I am; a high school chemistry teacher.

What is your favorite aspect of your graduate school experience?
The other people in my cohort are amazing. We have become a small family through our year together and they helped me get through.

How has the Ball State Graduate School transformed your life?
It has given me more confidence in myself. It also has built my interest in teaching into a strong desire to serve others through teaching. I originally was hoping to use my passion for chemistry in the research field after I received my bachelor’s degree. However, the Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellowship has directed me toward a different passion – igniting others to pursue further education (hopefully towards the STEM fields, of course).

Describe your graduate school experience in one sentence.
This year was intense, but definitely worth the work.

If you had to choose again, why would you choose Ball State for your graduate degree?
The relationships I have built with the rest of my cohort, my professors, and the students I had the honor of teaching.

Please share your title and school system where you are teaching. I will be teaching high school chemistry and middle school Spanish at Jac-Cen-Del High/Jr school.