Nova Sco­tia Col­lege of Early Child­hood Ed­u­ca­tion

Katie Mur­ray be­came an early child­hood ed­u­ca­tor with­out los­ing her spark

The Coast - Career Minded - - PAID CONTENT -

Katie Mur­ray had heard about the pro­gram at the Nova Sco­tia Col­lege of Early Child­hood Ed­u­ca­tion (NSCECE) years be­fore she at­tended. At that time, she had a full-time job and wasn’t ready to take the plunge into school. But a few years later, Murry was look­ing for­ward to her jour­ney into a new ca­reer.

“I’ve al­ways had a pas­sion for work­ing with young chil­dren,” she says. “Af­ter hav­ing my son, who is now seven, I felt there were as­pects of this pro­gram which would ev­i­dently help me with par­ent­ing. It was a win-win for me.”

Her pro­gram at NSCECE of­fered Mur­ray the op­por­tu­nity to see ed­u­ca­tors in­ter­act­ing with the chil­dren in real time, which she found to be ex­tremely ben­e­fi­cial. This took place through­out the practicum place­ments at lab schools, which aligned with stu­dents’ philoso­phies.

“The pro­gram of­fered me the knowl­edge to work well with chil­dren, and to learn how to be the ed­u­ca­tor I want to be,” says Mur­ray. The fu­ture Early Child­hood Ed­u­ca­tors work at a child­care cen­tre dur­ing the school year, and are met with op­por­tu­ni­ties for net­work­ing for fu­ture em­ploy­ment prospects.

The chil­dren from NSCECE lab schools visit the class­room, of­fer­ing hands-on learn­ing to pre­pare ECE stu­dents like Mur­ray for teach­ing in a class­room set­ting. Al­though this sounds like a lot to take on, Mur­ray didn’t find any of it to be in­tim­i­dat­ing or chal­leng­ing, be­cause it was some­thing she was in­ter­ested in learn­ing. She loved ev­ery minute of it.

Mur­ray’s great­est chal­lenge through­out the pro­gram was try­ing to bal­ance school, her practicum and her own so­cial life of fam­ily and friends. But the time spent was well worth it, as Mur­ray says the early child­care ed­u­ca­tion field is a re­ward­ing one, filled with so many pas­sion­ate and ded­i­cated ed­u­ca­tors.

Be­cause the NSCECE com­mu­nity is small and close-knit, Mur­ray didn’t feel like she was just her stu­dent num­ber.

“Be­sides gain­ing em­ploy­ment upon grad­u­a­tion, I hon­estly feel like my great­est re­ward was meet­ing so many dif­fer­ent peo­ple from var­i­ous parts of the world,” she says. Mur­ray found it to be amaz­ing not only to be learn­ing about early child­hood ed­u­ca­tion, but about other cul­tures, val­ues and opin­ions as well.

At­tend­ing NSCECE gave Mur­ray the con­fi­dence and mo­ti­va­tion to fur­ther her ed­u­ca­tion and knowl­edge in early child­hood ed­u­ca­tion, as well as a chance to ex­cel in her ca­reer. Upon grad­u­a­tion, Mur­ray had a job wait­ing for her at one of the lab schools of NSCECE.

Even through­out the busy­ness of the pro­gram, Mur­ray says she tried to re­mem­ber to re­lax, to let loose and to make time to be silly.

“School can be stress­ful at times, but re­mem­ber that it will be worth it in the end. Stay pas­sion­ate and don’t lose your spark.”

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