“SWAlumni” panel hosts alumni guest speakers with careers in education
Five former SWAs attended the panel as guest speakers, all of whom graduated as recently as 2020 and as late as 2014.

“SWAlumni” panel hosts alumni guest speakers with careers in education

Alumni reunited on Apr. 3 to talk about coming from a Student Writing Assistant (SWA) position at the Writing Resource Center (WRC) into a career within the education department. The event—titled “SWAlumni in Education”—was made possible by Director of Writing Jennifer Wells and Assistant Director of Writing Alexandra Maass connecting with five alumni who sought educational opportunities after their graduation. Within the panel, current students of New College had the chance to ask alumni questions and strike conversation about how life is in the education department after school ends. 

Several topics were discussed in the hour-long conversation, such as benefits and drawbacks of private versus public school teaching, how New College helped these alumni towards a job in education, how to set and manage positive relationships with students and more.

“I did SWA teaching and coaching where I really made that decision, and then I spent a year in Hillsborough College where they help you to set up to get a teaching certificate for any field you want,” B Van Aken (‘20) recalled. “I am now certified to teach age three through grade three.”

“If you have a bachelor’s degree, and you apply to teach, you will definitely get the job—unless you want to be a history teacher,” Chelsea Torregrosa (‘18) also explained. “When I started applying, I was looking to be an English teacher. There were none, because those positions open up internally before externally.”

Overall, the students who attended the panel were met with free food, open conversation and a safe space to learn about how the benefits and challenges of education impact both those pursuing and those currently within a job in schools—regardless of what kind.

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