EWU Celebrates Future Teachers

November 22, 2023

Eastern recently celebrated soon-to-be School of Education graduates during a special Future Teacher Send-Off event held at EWU’s Pence Union Building.

The Nov. 15 send-off, sponsored by longtime Eastern supporter STCU, featured students’ faculty mentors, supervisors and family members, all on hand to cheer the future teachers’ commitment to becoming professional educators.

“Teachers often don’t get enough recognition, but this is an opportunity for us to honor our future teachers,” said the event’s keynote speaker, Anna Wilson.

Wilson spoke to both the challenging and rewarding parts of the profession, emphasizing the best part of all: the students.

During her remarks, Wilson played a video highlighting students from the Post Falls School District—the district where many of Eastern’s graduation candidates did their student teaching. The Post Falls students were asked what they liked most about their teacher: Several answered that their teachers were nice and helped them learn. One second-grade student charmingly said, “Everything.”

“I truly love my students,” said Antonio Isiordia, one of the future teachers honored at the event. Isiordia has nearly completed his student-teaching placement at Lake City High School in Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. “I’ll probably cry when I have to leave,” he said.

Other honorees made it clear that working directly with students is what makes them the most excited to start their careers as teachers.

“They’re so witty, even the young ones,” said Gracie Anyder, a soon-to-be graduate from Spokane.

In addition to traditional lectures and college courses, education students gain hands-on experience through their student-teaching placements in schools throughout the greater Spokane area.

“Ultimately the best experience that the candidates have is the experience of being in the classroom” said Stephanie Lauritzen, director of field experience.

During the ceremony, Zach Winegar was named “candidate of the quarter” for his dedication as a student teacher. According to his supervisor, Winegar always went “above and beyond” while gaining the utmost respect from his students.

The event concluded with a recognition of each candidate. Ushered across the stage to rounds of applause, the future teachers were gifted goodie bags that included some swag for their classrooms, while Swoop looked on approvingly.

To learn more about how you can support future teachers and other budding professionals, visit EWU/Give.