November 2019 Student Spotlight – Donna Ogonowski

My journey in education began when I was influenced to go to college to get a degree in education by receiving a scholarship for my first year.  I dropped out of college in my third year to marry the love of my life and moved across the country leaving all I knew, thank you US Navy.  I never returned to college to finish my degree, sometimes I’ve regretted that, but God places us in locations and orchestrates events to help us learn who we should become and where we should serve.  I began working at a child care center over 26 years ago primarily working with three-year-olds. This is one of the best things that has happened to me.

My current position is Administrator for a child development center.  I, of course, stay very busy. I love every minute of it though. There are times I sneak back into the class and just hang out with the students to have fun doing messy art or playing on the playground. I have the best of both worlds.

I love working with the three- and four-year-olds the most. They are so expressive and creative.  I love this age group as they learn new concepts, and how things work, and how to create wonderful works of art. Messy art and outside play are my favorite times of the day.

What keeps me motivated to work with children is watching the students learn new concepts. I am so proud of all they learn. I have worked in the same facility for 26 years and have watched my three-year-old students grow and some have even chosen this as their career and it’s so fun to have a student now become an employee.

I live in the Northern Virginia area and it’s a very busy lifestyle here with so many activities to get involved with. I don’t have a lot of free time, but I do enjoy counted cross stitch as a stress reliever and I’m very involved in my church and teach a great group of ladies. I am also involved in a Christian Women’s Network locally that serves and ministers to women in the community.

I learned about CCEI in the summer of 2018 and signed up our school for the center program and myself for a certificate program.  I have just completed the coursework and now applying for the credentialing from the CDA Council.  I love that the employees at my center can complete the courses they need at their pace while meeting requirements for annual training for state requirements. It’s a wonderful option for us.

I highly recommend CCEI to all that I know.  It is a wonderful program that has such flexibility. It’s a work at your own pace online study program, but there is the personal touch of the Education Coaches and other personnel that is very supportive of your growth. They have really helped me as I completed my coursework.