Sarah Maxwell uses educational strategies learned from Texas Tech’s Early Childhood Education program in her role as a preschool director
In May of 2008, Sarah Maxwell became an alumna of the Department of Human Development and Family Sciences with a degree in Early Childhood Education (ECE). Growing up, Maxwell felt drawn towards working around children, and today, she is a director of a preschool in West Plano.
Throughout Maxwell's teenage years and into her young adult life, her involvement with children as a babysitter and volunteer in childcare was influential for her future career path. During Maxwell's time as an active participant in volunteering opportunities involving children, her desire for a career in teaching grew.
“I had a passion to instill in children their own value and worthwhile getting to be a part of their learning journey,” Maxwell said. “I chose Early Childhood Education as opposed to Education because I wanted to work with the younger grades, specifically kindergarten through third grade.”
Maxwell's career path began by working with high schoolers as an academic advisor for the Upward Bound grant at Western Texas College. Eventually, Maxwell moved to Dallas to start a job as an after-school program director in Little Elm and eventually became a preschool director.
“In each of these careers, I was able to utilize my education in Early Childhood Education in unique ways,” Maxwell said.
Earning a degree in Early Childhood Education has allowed Maxwell to be able to learn about human development from birth to childhood. The skills Maxwell acquired during her classes at Texas Tech made it possible for her to adapt to teaching any age group, as well as be able to educate students on an individual level.
“I have been able to implement nearly everything I learned in my degree path in real-world classrooms with infants through pre-kindergarten, knowing how invaluable early childcare is to a person's life and future,” Maxwell explained.
Becoming a director at a preschool in West Plano provides Maxwell the opportunity to make impactful relationships with a diverse group of students and their families. The most crucial stage of children's development is from six weeks to five years old, and Maxwell has been able to continuously make a great influence on their learning.
“I established a genuine and meaningful relationship with my parents and students and taught them with love,” Maxwell said. “I modeled a passion for learning and growing every day and instilled in them their value, worth and unique importance to this world. I believe when children know their worth and unique contribution to this world, they go on to move mountains one day.”
The College of Human Sciences allows students majoring in Early Childhood Education to gain opportunities that include real-life teaching experiences. From the beginning of Maxwell's college journey, she began to learn about educational strategies straight from participating in a classroom setting.
“Texas Tech's College of Human Sciences houses the Child Development Research Center on campus, where ECE students get to work one-on-one and learn from infants through preschool-aged children,” Maxwell states. “These things coupled with a passionate teaching stage second-to-none make for a dynamic and stellar learning experience that simply cannot be beat elsewhere.”
During Maxwell's time at Texas Tech, her professors turned large classroom settings into more intimate learning experiences for students which made her experience enjoyable.
“I felt truly cared about during my time at Texas Tech, and my teachers and professors modeled what they wanted us to teach our students like one day,” Maxwell said. “Making the world a better place and improving the human experience truly is the core of Texas Tech University.”