By Ashley Farris
I consider myself very fortunate to have been raised in a small, rural community like Flanagan, Illinois. Because of our small class sizes at Flanagan-Cornell High School, I felt that I was able to get individual attention whenever I needed it. These teachers were of significant importance to me, and I wanted to be like them as an adult. I felt they genuinely cared about me and my classmates, in and out of the classroom. They were active in our community, some raising their own children, and set good examples for others to follow. This is who I wanted to become.
I have had the opportunity to work with children of various ages through babysitting experiences, teaching vacation bible school, and assisting Elementary teachers while in high school. In each situation, I found it to be enjoyable to see the children demonstrate a skill that I helped them learn – it was very fulfilling. Their success gave me a lot of self-worth, which led me to become a teacher.
Monmouth College helped me continue my dream of being involved in a rural community. I have chosen the rural community setting because of my past experiences and because Monmouth brings me a sense of feeling at home. On top of the amazing students that attend Monmouth College, the staff is just as wonderful. They truly care about your goals in life and will help you achieve your ultimate dream. I feel being a part of the TARTANS program is the direction that will provide me with the best opportunity to continue to fulfill my dreams and be a successful teacher.