Following her Passion and Pursuing a Bachelor's Degree in Education
Regina Moses chose to study Inclusive Elementary Education through Cazenovia College's Adult and Continuing Education program at Herkimer County Community College (HCCC). Moses decided the program was a perfect fit because she could continue working and go to school part-time, attending night and online classes.
After graduating with her Associate in Childhood Education, Moses had decided the next step in her education would be to work on a Bachelor in Business Administration. She was unsure that teaching was truly for her and had a desire to study business, so she aimed her career in that direction. It was soon after starting her career that she felt like she was missing something. Moses wanted to work with children and have the opportunity to go on missionary and volunteer trips.
A conversation with a customer lead Moses to consider pursuing her education with Cazenovia College at the HCCC campus. Moses explains, "While working at my full-time job, a customer mentioned the education program at HCCC through Cazenovia. It sounded amazing to me! I contacted someone that day and sent in my application. Within a month, I was accepted and getting ready to go back to school for something I loved."
Moses always dreamed of becoming a teacher. Moses' first opportunity to fulfill her dream was with New Hope Children's Home in Peru, where she spent five weeks working with children. During this experience, she was able to help children with day-to-day activities, and in the process, taught English to children and learned a little Spanish from them, too.
After returning to the United States, Moses applied to various jobs that allowed her to work with children and use her business degree. She landed a job with VisonWorks where she was able to teach new patients how to insert and remove contacts. She says her favorite memories are teaching the younger patients how to wear contacts for the very first time.
Moses shares, "I love teaching and I love people! Both my coworkers and the patients that come in have a story to share and areas where they excel. That is also one of the many things I love about education. Children are just smaller people, but they are amazing people that are open to learn and share their experiences. They all have something unique about them and each one can make a difference."
Since the first day of her program at HCCC, Moses enjoyed learning from her professors and teachers in the field. One of her favorite memories from the program was when she and a classmate dressed up as superheroes for a group project. The project was a lesson on pronouns and how pronouns take the place of a noun or disguise it. Moses and her friend connected the lesson to being a superhero, because they are in disguises as well, and they wore red caps and green masks.
As a continuing education student, Moses has never felt out of place. She believes that her experiences have helped her to not only become a better student, but also think broader about the education field. She shares, "With different life experiences, I believe it has helped me to be able to see different views and go after each good or tough situation with a larger viewpoint. I do not regret my education journey, but I reflect from my past experience and use it to help me see the bigger picture."
Juggling working part-time, school, and classroom observation hours can be challenging at times, but Moses has learned the importance of time management and taking every day one step at a time. She looks forward to what the future of the program and her career have in store for her after graduating in May 2019.
When asked about her five-year plan, Moses shares that she is not rushing to start her career. "It is natural to always want to find the quickest route to do something, and that sometimes pushes us to not go after a dream. I never cared about how long the program would take. I just knew I wanted to teach children and that this path would lead me to something greater than I could imagine when I start my new career," comments Moses.
Moses' future career plans include continuing her education to earn a Master's degree, working in her own elementary classroom, and continuing to volunteer overseas. Moses comments, "I am so excited to have a classroom where each day will be a new one for every child that enters. I hope I can work with ESL students in the future, because growing up with my mom and grandma who spoke English as a second language, I realized how much I love people from other countries and how they communicate. Getting to volunteer overseas and learning another culture, while working at my job with different refugee groups coming in, all have played a factor in directing my future career plan."
When Moses does have her own classroom, she says she will use her breaks and summer vacations to give back and go on missionary trips. Whether a week or longer, she hopes that she can bring English and other subjects to children who really want to learn.
Moses raves about the education program faculty, staff, and her peers. Through each of their experiences, she is learning how to be the best educator possible. Moses adds, "My experience on this journey has been amazing. I can wholeheartedly say I love where I am and love school. I leave class knowing this is where I am meant to be and so excited for where I am at and the future."
Moses sums up her Cazenovia experience by saying, "It has been an adventure! The people I have met along the way, the things I have learned, and the entire experience has been one I will forever be grateful for. My Caz Experience has helped to make a dream that I thought was dead come back alive."