Stephanie grew up in Fruitvale, B.C. in the West Kootenays and transferred to the UBC Vancouver campus from College of the Rockies during her third year in order to complete her Kinesiology degree at the Faculty of Education. She has fond memories of her time spent at UBC in Vancouver and had the opportunity to establish great connections with the UBC community, whether directly through activities associated with her Kinesiology program or other campus-related activities at large. As a student mentee in the Kinesiology Mentorship program, Stephanie had the chance to connect with an alumni mentor, who was able to guide and assist her with realistic career goal setting and action planning, professional development, and networking skills, all of which are essential for a successful transition from university to the professional working world.
Upon completion of her degree in Kinesiology in 2012, Stephanie returned to the west Kootenays and enrolled in the West Kootenay Teacher Education Program (WKTEP) to further specialize in teaching in rural and small school settings. It was during her first teaching position in Physical Education, English, and Humanities that she found out about the New Teacher Mentoring Project, a joint BCTF/UBC pilot project aimed at developing mentoring programs to support new teachers within BC school districts that currently do not have structured mentoring programs. Stephanie’s decision to sign up for this program exceeded her expectations, as she benefited from great guidance from her mentor who helped her overcome experiential challenges that new teachers often face in the profession. Furthermore, both parties benefited from collaborating on projects, which in turn impacted and enriched their students’ learning experience.
As someone who had the opportunity to go through both a student and a professional mentorship program, Stephanie directly links her success in personal and professional developments to taking part in mentorship opportunities.