The date I, Jessica Stoerger was born.
On a family camping trip to Roaring River State Park in Cassville Missouri, we visited the Nature Center and attended a reptiles workshop. During the presentation the Naturalist had to answer the phone. As she started putting the Black Rat snake back into her cage I offered to hold it. While I was holding it, I decided that I wanted to go into the science field, and wanted to be a wildlife educator.
During my 6th grade year, Mr. Maddren noticed my love for science and one class period after my assignment was done, he places a preserved bat in a jar in-front of me on the table. I was intrigued by the small creature.
Attended and graduated with Associate of Arts in Environmental Science from Crowder Community College.I was the first student to graduate with the Environmental Science degree from Crowder College and the first person in my family to go to college.
Attended and graduated from Arkansas Tech University in Russellville Arkansas with my Bachelor of Science Degree in Fisheries and Wildlife Biology.
Worked as an Environmental Educator for the Wyandotte Nation. I worked with preschool through high school age students both tribal and non-tribal about environmental issues in the Northeast Oklahoma area. Also did water quality sampling, wrote grants and worked closely with the EPA and other Native American Tribes on several projects related to the heavy metal mining in the area. Fell in love with interacting with the students.
In the fall of 2013, the grants I was working under looked like they were not going to be renewed through the Environmental Protection Service. I started looking into going back to college and completing my teaching certificate. At that time the closes university that offered it was almost 2 hours away and only evening classes, in person. This option was not feasible at that time.
Spent the entire summer with the older girls at Girl Scout camp as their counselor. I taught them survival skills, plant identification, outdoor skills, canoeing and kayaking. Every opportunity to teach them about science and biology I did. One of my good friends there was a high school science teacher, all summer she prompt me to go back to school and get my teaching certificate because I would make a great science teacher. Even now she is encouraging me to continue with my education.
We moved to Hawaii in Novmber 2016. In January of 2017 I started working at the local elementary school as a Paraprofessional Tutor and Educational Assistant. Within a week the principle came to me and asked me to be a substitute teacher, I completed the Substitute teaching course two weeks later and started substitute teaching the next day. I have enjoyed every day of it. The interaction with the students really made me realize that I was sure I wanted to go back and get my teaching certificate. I might have taken the long, non-traditional way to becoming a teacher but every academic milestone was towards teaching in science in some capacity.
First official meeting of the Education cohort at University of Hawaii- Manoa