December 2021 Student Spotlight – Marisita Santiago

I came to the city of Houston, TX with 25 years of experience in the Early Childhood Education field from the state of New York. I started in 1993 as a school receptionist. Currently I am an Assistant Director.  During those years I have acquired vast experience working with the Early Head Start, Head Start, Preschool, School-Age, Montessori, and Youth programs.  As a single mother of three, I embraced the opportunity of being able to work while seeing my children grow both physically and developmentally.  This is where my love for Early Childhood Education began.  To me, having my children in a childcare program was the best way of fostering the growth of a child while also being surrounded by a rich development program.  Experiencing first-hand the positive impact it brings to a young child’s life is the most rewarding feeling.

I enjoy circle time with the children. It’s in those moments that they are open to tell you about their time at home. I also enjoy listening to their stories. I love to greet them in the morning as well. Their smiles and curious eyes give me life and it sets the tone for the day. Children are our future. I want to make sure that if they are lacking anything outside my school walls, that I can provide them with the necessary support, tools, and nourishment to become their best. Sending them off to primary school at the end of their journey well prepared and full of love is my ultimate goal.

I was approached by the Head of School in my current school to take the Texas Director’s Certificate training program offered by CCEI.  What a great opportunity it has been to acquire the necessary knowledge needed for the field while expanding my professional portfolio! Enrolling in the Texas Director’s Certificate training program with CCEI was very simple and quick. Before you know it, you are in your first lesson. Navigating the courses and getting the necessary feedback from CCEI’s education coaches was such a smooth experience. It’s a very simple straight forward navigation system and very user-friendly. Being a full-time professional, I needed the flexibility with deadlines and course load. CCEI’s timeline accommodates busy schedules, giving you ample time and opportunity to complete your courses.

The course content is easy to understand and detailed. They even provide you with real life testimonials and videos. Each segment is well explained with unlimited time to read through it and understand it with the platform available 24/7/365. I love that they even provide you worksheets to take notes. The written practices between lessons are very helpful. It gives you an idea of how much you know so you can prepare for the final test. What I like the most is that it’s not just a one chance deal. They give you plenty of opportunities for you to understand the material and pass your test. The material in the Texas Director’s Certificate courses are very detailed and specific to your assignment. They elaborate in every possible detail that you might encounter in your current job or future role.

The CCEI education coaches are very responsive and always attentive. They make sure to keep in touch and follow up on your assignments. Their availability and support gives you that ease and comfort to seek help and ask questions. Their knowledge in the material presented is key for your success and accomplishment in your training journey and in the final test. They walk you through the process and always have staff available for questions and concerns. 

I see my career in the future as a Head of School.  This field is a very rewarding one and I would like to put my personal stamp in the life of young children. I would like to expand my professional career with the knowledge needed to keep up with the times.  Times are evolving and advancing.  We must keep up with the new methods and technologies involved in today’s Early Childhood Education environment.

CCEI has been a great tool!  I have really enjoyed the opportunity for advancement. It has been a great experience from the education coaches all the way to customer service.  It’s a very rewarding feeling to know that you are an asset to your company because a training provider like ChildCare Education Institute is preparing you to be the best you can be.