May 2018 Student Spotlight – Mari Rudge

As a young girl I always dreamed of becoming a teacher.  The greatest influence in this decision was my fourth grade teacher Mrs. Susan Jones.  She made learning fun and exciting.  My career in education started after my service in the United States Marines Corp.  Even though I had a passion for education, I did try my hand in the corporate world.  Never feeling fulfilled in those roles, I left the corporate world and began my career as an early childhood teacher.  Within the first year, I knew that I had found my calling.

My favorite time of day with my students was when I could see the “aha” moment in their eyes as they connected what they were being taught to their everyday life experiences.   Knowing the impact early childhood educators have on children at such a young age, I wanted to share what I had experienced with other teachers.  I went from teaching in a classroom to becoming a Director of Early Childhood.  I received my Director’s Certification through CCEI.  The courses were very instrumental in giving me the foundation needed to become a successful Director.  My career as a Director has allowed me to spread my experience and knowledge to teachers who also have the drive and commitment to early childhood.  I encourage my teachers to take courses from CCEI to further their education.  The courses can be taken at their own pace and gives them the CEU credits they need yearly.

I am currently working as a Director at a The Goddard School where going to work every day is less like work and more like a fun place to hang out with teachers who have the same passion as I do. My future plans are to continue working as a Director while I take on more educational courses. I plan on using CCEI to further my education and would recommend them to anyone who wants to learn the most up-to-date information in early childhood.   An unknown author once wrote “A teacher’s purpose is not to create students in his own image, but to develop students who can create their own image.”  Knowing that we, as educators, have that responsibility is a great honor.  I can’t imagine having a job more gratifying than this one.