My family first moved to Manteca in February of 1985 when I was in 2nd grade. We had moved from the bustling city of San Jose in order for my parents to raise their children in a safer, slower paced, family community which is what Manteca provided for us.
My father opened up his own business, and my mother began working for Manteca Unified School District so that she would have the same schedule as her kids.
For the first few years of my education, I attended Nile Garden Elementary. I was blessed to have Evelyn Moore, Patti Munoz, Rhonda Franke, and Judy Pacheco challenging me academically while bringing fun to learning.
Due to the continual growth of the town, Brock Elliott was built and after 6th grade, I continued my education journey there with Dale Cretser, Tom James, and Doug McCreath among other outstanding Junior High teachers.
Four fabulous years being involved in community service, leadership, and sports at Manteca High had me confident and determined to succeed when I graduated in 1996 and moved off to Chico as a declared Liberal Studies major.
My educational career at CSU, Chico was amazing. I couldn’t have asked for better professors who were personally invested in my success. Chico provided me with both textbook learning and LIFE learning. I was able to work on campus for two years as a resident advisor and another two years in the office of admissions.
I was also able to take an entire year off of school to travel across the USA and Europe with a group of 150 students in a program called Up With People.
It was during these years in college that I found a passion for student affairs. This passion led to my first professional position after I graduated in 2002.
While I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Missouri, my family was still here in Manteca and so was my heart, so I returned, but not before spending a few more years away. I worked at CSU, Sacramento for 3 years while obtaining my first MA degree in higher education.
During the summer of 2005 I began subbing up in the Natomas and Elk Grove areas and fell back in love with my original calling to be an elementary teacher. After marrying my college sweetheart in 2006 and wanting to start a family, we made our way back to my home in Manteca.
There really is nothing better than seeing my students succeed. The hairstyles change over the years, but their successful smiles stay the same.
Since 2006 I’ve had so many opportunities for growth in MUSD. I’ve taught kindergarten, junior high, and 4th grade in general education classrooms before landing at Stella Brockman in 2009 where I am now beginning my 7th year in special education serving K-8th RSP students.
While living in Manteca, I’ve been able to continue learning and earned both my multiple subject and special ed credentials along with my second MA degree from UOP in special education.
The thing I absolutely love most about living in this town and working for MUSD are the relationships.
I love seeing my former junior high students drive around town, or current students and their families at the grocery store or park. I love sitting in district trainings with my former teachers who have promoted into administrative and other positions of leadership.
I love having an impact on my students and feeling like what I do matters and hoping that I’ll be remembered with fondness the same way I remember those who challenged, inspired, and motivated me to achieve more than I thought I was capable of achieving. I love that my daughter started kindergarten this fall in the same school district I work in.
I’m thankful to MUSD for taking a chance on a new teacher 10 years ago and I’m #proudtobemusd.