I am a Rural Teacher

Rural teachers from across the country share ideas, stories, and best practices through:

  1. Teacher-to-Teacher Conversation.
    Teachers may join the public Facebook group called “I am a Rural Teacher!”, where they can share photos, stories, curriculum ideas, and teaching experiences.
  2. Building a Rural Teacher Narrative
    "I am a Rural Teacher!" narratives (scroll down) showcase the stories of rural educators.
  3. Rural Teacher Recruitment Efforts.
    Our RTC Network and related efforts are committed to purposeful teacher recruitment strategies with an emphasis on social justice and inclusive community development.



Rural teachers; their stories:

Debra Norwood

Debra Norwood is a former rural teacher and the current principal at Piermont Village School in New Hampshire. She's a member of RELN.

Dakota Crowder

Dakota Crowder, Eastern Illinois University, student participant at the EIU Rural Teacher Corps shares her story, Charleston, Illinois

Devanne Lawson

Devanne Lawson, Eastern Illinois University, student participant at the EIU Rural Teacher Corps shares her story, Charleston, Illinois

Brittany Williams

Brittany Williams, University Charter School kindergarten teacher in Livingston, Alabama, shares her first-year teaching experience.

Carlos Corona

Carlos Corona, a middle school teacher in Ceres, California, shares his first-year teaching experience.

Blane Redus

Blane Redus, a fourth grade teacher in Miller, Missouri, shares his first-year teaching experience.

Connor Sullivan

Connor Sullivan, Western Illinois University, student participant at the Great River Teacher Corps shares his story, Macomb, Illinois

Emilee Rains

Emilee Rains, Western Illinois University, student participant at the Great River Teacher Corps shares her story, Macomb, Illinois

Hannah Libby

Hannah Libby, Western Illinois University, student participant at the Great River Teacher Corps shares her story, Macomb, Illinois

Joshua Talley

Joshua Talley, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares his story, Monmouth, Illinois

Nathan Schroeder

Nathan Schroeder, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares his story, Monmouth, Illinois

McKenzie Campbell

McKenzie Campbell, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares her story, Monmouth, Illinois

Kylee Payne

Kylee Payne, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares her story, Monmouth, Illinois

Elizabeth Reasoner

Elizabeth Reasoner, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares her story, Monmouth, Illinois

Courtney Eklund

Courtney Eklund, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares her story, Monmouth, Illinois

Ashley Farris

Ashley Farris, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares her story, Monmouth, Illinois

Aleeka Gentzler

Aleeka Gentzler, Monmouth College, student participant at the TARTANS shares her story, Monmouth, Illinois

Courtney Harmon

Community Engagement Intern, Western Illinois Hub office in partnership with the Monmouth College Educational Studies Department

Cecilia Romero-Robles

Cecilia Romero-Robles, California State University-Chico RiSE student, reflects on the community of Hamilton, City, California

Dillon Johnson

Dillon Johnson, California State University, Chico RiSE student reflects on the community of Oroville, California

Mayra V. Moreno

Mayra V. Moreno, California State University, Chico RiSE student, reflects on the community of Corning, California

Jera M. Verboom

Jera M. Verboom, California State University, Chico RiSE student, reflects on the community of Orland, California

Kile Taylor

​Kile Taylor is an Education Specialist for the Glenn County Office of Education and Hamilton Elementary in California. He is a RiSE Mentor.

Lupe Funderburk

Lupe Funderburg teaches English at Hamilton High School in California and is a mentor teacher in Chico State University's RiSE Program.

Jan Mathews

Jan Mathews teaches Seventh and Eighth grade integrated science at C.K. Price Middle School in Orland CA and is a RiSE program mentor.

Allie Marques

Allie Marques is a Black Belt Teacher Corps member of the inaugural cohort at the University of West Alabama.

Rebecca Washington

Ms. Washington is a music teacher in rural southern Illinois. Her dedication has allowed the school music program to grow exponentially.

Dr. Nathan Hamblin

Nathan is an editor/consultant and researcher teaching mathematics for the rural Twin Valley Community Local Schools, West Alexandria, Ohio.

Lara Strong

"I hope my students can understand the culture of the language they are learning, and learn how our ancestries are from all over the world."

Hannah Bryant

“I loved the curiosity of the kids...I loved being able to teach kids to discover new things. That was my inspiration to become a teacher."

Dr. Mykie Nash

“That’s the thing about rural schools, you have high need, but you also have people rooted in the community that want to support the kids,”

Jami McConnell

“I think that’s my favorite memory, just getting to be a part of these kids’ lives.”

Albert Bryant

When Albert Bryant found out he would be returning to his hometown as the high school math teacher, he knew he would see familiar faces.

McKenzie Moreland

“Growing up I used to play teacher all the time,” Moreland says. “I used to make my own handouts and make my brother fill them out."

Kelly Wardle

Being an educator is much more than a job to Kelly Wardle. Her students inspire her, make her laugh, challenge her, and give her purpose.

Ashlee Burger

Burger is a perfect example of what the OTC aims to achieve: a student who returns to give back to the community that raised her.