Kelsey Jo Penner

KelseyJoPennerWhat education have you taken?

I graduated from Neelin High School in Brandon. After a year at Brandon University, I lived in Western Canada for several years. I went to Selkirk College in BC and earned a certificate in Classroom Community Support Work.  I also hold a TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) certificate. After a variety of amazing “school of life” experiences, I decided to return to Brandon University to complete my B.A. degree, and pursue my dream of becoming a certified classroom teacher. I am currently in the final semester of my Education degree.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

I am quite proud of my decision to return to university studies! I have felt very supported by the Brandon University community. I have been the fortunate recipient of the Bjarnson Award for History in the Americas, the B.U.S.U. Bursary and the Faculty of Education Alumni Award. This recognition has been very meaningful and validating to me as a returning student. I have enjoyed working with other students as a Tutorial leader, and sharing the university experience with all kinds of students.

Tell me about yourself/ your background/ your history.

I grew up in Brandon, and most of my family lives in Westman.  I have worked in the fields of childcare, supporting individuals with disabilities, and as an educational assistant. Most recently, I have been able to combine my love of teaching with my interest in other cultures by teaching English as an additional language. After spending years living in other parts of Canada and working overseas as an English teacher, it has been an interesting and wonderful experience to come back to my hometown. I am currently teaching English at Westman Immigrant Services, and love the increase in diversity and culture in our city.

How did you become interested in your field of study?

I have always loved working with children and young people. Teaching offers a special opportunity to connect with and teach students and to be a positive influence in their lives. I am excited to continue to learn and grow with and from students and other educators. I come from a family of teachers, so I understand the creativity, commitment and passion needed to be a good teacher.

What is your philosophy in life?

I believe in being open to new opportunities and seeking out the positive in all experiences.

Where do you see yourself in the future?

I would love to be teaching my own class in a dynamic school in the Westman area! I look forward to doing more traveling, learning and enjoying life with friends and family.

Nominator’s Comments

Kelsey is thorough and thoughtful, and has a way of motivating everyone in the class to want to engage in intellectual community-building.