Long before coming to YCP, Siani Widman '17 knew she wanted to pursue a degree in education. After experiencing the negative implications of underfunding on her school district, Widman developed a passion for teaching because she wanted to have a positive impact on students in similar circumstances. "I hope to engage kids in learning and inspire them to want to keep learning anything they're interested in, even if their community is underfunded or because of their situation," said Widman.
Her experiences inside the classroom, around campus, and back home have all been instrumental in shaping her as an educator. She has enjoyed the mentorship of professors such as Dr. Anthony Fredericks and believes that her role as a Resident Assistant for the past three years has been especially formative. In addition to developing her confidence and patience, Widman explained, "Being an RA taught me that some things in life are not meant to be rushed or perfect, but by doing the best that I can when I can do it, I can succeed more fluidly."
Widman has also worked as a teacher's aide at the Grace Tabernacle Learning Center in Southwest Philadelphia for four years. While she spends much of her time helping to design projects and lessons and supervising students, Widman said, "My favorite part about working there is watching the kids grow from a few months old to four or five years and seeing all the development that takes place and the knowledge they gain. It constantly reminds me how important families and teachers are in a child's life and what that means for me as a future educator."
Written by Jennifer Hindley '17