When I was laid-off from the coal mines in 2016, I knew I was going to go back to school and finish what I started in 2002. I enrolled at Gillette College to take all the classes in my degree field that would transfer before transferring to Black Hills State University in Spearfish S.D.. I graduated with a B.S. in K-12 Special Education in December of 2019.
I never really got real involved at BHSU this time enrolled, just school. The first time I was enrolled I played football at offensive left tackle for the Yellowjackets.
My favorite part of getting my education was just being in classes and learning what I needed to start a career that I always wanted; being an educator and working with special education students.
The Hawthorn Foundation played a very pivotal role in my life. They were a foundation that believed in me to finish my education, and achieve a life goal of becoming an educator. This scholarship has had a great impact on my education and reminded me that learning was always something I loved and I never want to stop learning. This scholarship from the Hawthorn Foundation has changed my life. It lifted me up during a low in my life after the lay-off giving me hope and encouragement to fulfill my dreams.
After graduating I received a job in January 2019 at an Elementary School in Gillette, Wy finishing the school year for a teacher in the position of a K-2 exceptional child/resource room teacher. After the school year I applied for other jobs in Gillette and was offered a position at another Elementary School in an exceptional child/resource room teacher position, working with 2nd & 4th graders. l and am doing what I set out to do, I have achieved my life-long dream.