Amanda McLarty - 2007 Winning Essay

Amanda McLarty

I believe the north is a unique part of Canada and teaching in the north comes with unique circumstances. When I was a child going to school in a northern community, I saw many well meaning teachers that couldn't deal with these circumstances. Unfortunately those who suffered were the children who did not get the attention they deserved.

After working in the daycare system I realized that I wanted to continue my education and joined the Indian Teacher Education Program. Majoring in Native Studies has helped me understand the children in my home community and territory.

As I am nearing my final year of my Bachelor of Education Program at the University of Saskatchewan I am more certain than ever that I have chosen the correct career path. Through my education I have had to balance part time work and leaving home and family but my passion and goal to make a difference in children's lives has driven me. My plan is to graduate and teach as part of the community that I feel so close to.

Since graduating from high school I have been contributing to my northern community through practice teaching, work placements and volunteering through Girl Guides Canada. I know that when I graduate the north is where I want to return, hopefully encouraging children and inspiring them. These last four months will be an exciting final part of a long path, a path that I know will lead to a rewarding career shaping northern Canada's future.