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Shaping Young Minds and Futures: Courtney Vandermeulen

March 1, 2024 — 

From an early age, Courtney’s path was destined to be that of a teacher, “my Dad was a teacher for many years. He was actually my teacher in Grades 4, 5, and 6. I consider him the best teacher I know, and I’ve always wanted to be as excellent a teacher as he was!”

After completing her Bachelor of Arts degree, Courtney embraced a new chapter in her life as a stay-at-home mom with her three children: Dylan, Megan, and Lauren. Her passion for teaching and education never diminished, and once her youngest started kindergarten, she went back to school to complete her B.Ed. degree.

An important part to Courtney’s academic journey is the guidance and mentorship of professors like Dr. John Wiens, Dr. Gregory Bryan, and Dr. Graham Lea in particular.

The support of the Faculty of Education Alumni Scholarship has been of great assistance during her UM journey as a student. Courtney’s student experience has not been without its challenges. Commuting to campus from outside of Winnipeg and the responsibilities of raising a family with three children posed financial burdens on her education.

For Courtney, the most exciting part of being a teacher is the interactions with children: “I believe teachers can learn just as much from children as they can from us. Every day, we get the opportunity to help shape young minds as they go on their journey of learning.”

Advice for Students

“Make time for self-care! A busy program like this one can easily become overwhelming. I remember being told to make time for healthy eating and exercise, as well as other activities that help your mental health. Finding friends in your classes also makes the entire experience that much more enriching. I’m lucky to have found an amazing group of friends here!”

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