At the end of the day, when I see the light bulb go on in their heads, I feel a mix of joy and pride in both myself and my students - it’s honestly an amazing feeling.
Shannon McIntyre, '12 BSED
7th grade science teacher, Creekside Middle School in Port Orange
“I used to play ‘teacher’ all the time with everybody - even my granddad, who hated that,” recalls Shannon McIntyre, 26, a 7th grade science teacher at Creekside Middle School.
“Now that I’m actually doing the job, I know it takes a lot of sweat and tears - but at the end of the day it’s all worth it,” she says. “Seeing kids grow both academically and socially, you get back well beyond what you put into it.”
Working with middle school kids, Shannon focuses on making a lasting impact through science, to help them realize their potential in any area. “I want my students to experience success in education,” she says. “I want to help those who are not used to feeling success, even a little at a time, building on their confidence, to see them succeed where they thought they couldn’t.”While Shannon always wanted to teach, at first she planned to work with special needs children, earning her associate of arts degree right out of high school, as the first step toward the bachelor of science in education at Daytona State. But her junior year in college opened her eyes to a love of science. “I had avoided science classes, thinking that wasn’t an area I liked. So it was pretty exciting when I realized how much I loved it and how I could help kids relate it to their everyday life,” she explains.
Shannon, like many DSC BSED students, got her job where she interned, showing her mettle in the classroom. She advises potential education students to take advantage of any field work. “You’re going out to observe these teachers, so ask the questions, participate, learn from them and your intern time in the schools.”
A lot of folks think teaching is easily managed, she notes; “It’s definitely not - but if you agree with Martin Luther King Jr.’s comment that I share on my class website - ‘Intelligence plus character - that is the goal of true education’ - then you can do the job and become that role model.”
Choosing the best BSED program for your needs is critical, Shannon says, “What I took away most from DSC was the supportive nature of the program. They understood when I needed support, as a single mom, and were more than happy to help me with anything that came up or that I didn’t understand. And here I am, doing what I love.
“I have to be a teacher. That’s all there is to it.”