Jeannine Younger: Unexpected Pathways - From NYC to NWP
Wednesday, March 8th, 2023
NWP Alumni Jeannine Younger
At three-years-old, Jeannine fell in love with dance and spent many years performing on the stage of the Douglas J. Cardinal Performing Arts Centre. She began teaching dance at just 14-years-old.
After graduating high school, Jeannine’s academic journey led her to New York City where she studied theatre. After experiencing everything NYC had to offer, Jeannine returned to Grande Prairie.
She enrolled in the University Transfer Bachelor of Commerce program at NWP, majoring in Business Economics and Law. She completed her program at the University of Alberta, then spent seven years working as an Insurance Broker.
Jeannine found herself needing a change. She noted throughout her career and academic journey, teaching dance has always remained consistent.
“It was teaching dance that brought me to this understanding. It's not just dance, but it's actually the teaching aspect I enjoyed,” Jeannine said. “I enjoy helping students along this journey and to understand concepts and gaining a stronger understanding of the world around them in different ways.”
NWP has always felt like home to her. That feeling, coupled with her love of teaching, drew her back to take the Teacher Education North (T.E.N) program.
Jeannine describes her time in the T.E.N program as both positive and impactful.
“I had incredible instructors in the education department. They helped me discover that I was capable of thriving in this career,” said Jeannine. “They taught me it's not about the curriculum. It's about the humans and the privilege of being a part of these individual’s stories for just a snippet of their life.”
Jeannine often encourages her students to explore post-secondary options at NWP before going on to larger institutions. She believes the close-knit learning community here exposes students to post-secondary classrooms in a welcoming and encouraging space.
“You’re not just number. You’re a person,” Jeannine said. “The instructors and professors know who you are, and they care about your success and progress.”
Not only is Jeannine a Grade 9 science and drama instructor at Peace Wapiti Academy, but she is also an Inclusive Education Coordinator and is taking her Master of Educational Technology through the University of British Columbia.
“All together, it’s turned into this unexpected, beautiful career that I feel strongly about,” said Jeannine. “As a teacher, it’s amazing to watch students see success, to persevere, to learn about resiliency, and to be empathetic humans. I’m proud of the career path that I’m on right now.”
Interested in pursuing a career in education? Visit NWP.me/Education