Judith Maendel

Judith Maendel

What education have you taken?  

I hold a grade 12 diploma from Fairholme Colony High school. I’m a first year Bachelor of Arts student at Brandon University, working towards an Education degree, with a focus on the elementary grades.

What accomplishments are you proud of?

Throughout my elementary grades, I entered local Poetry and Drama festivals, appeared in the final and won various trophies, as well as a recommendation to the Provincial Speech Art competition, all of which instilled a love for education and an insight into education’s abilities to create opportunities. Being a four time Manitoba Envirothon competitor and once placing third furthered this belief. The Envirothon experience enriched my already abundant appreciation for nature.

I am very proud of the fact that I am a certified First Aid and CPR/AED instructor. I’ve wholeheartedly enjoyed using those skills to ensure that as many people as possible have the basic skills to assist in an emergent situation.

As a result of my passion for the lifesaving society, I obtained my National Lifeguard certification, along with swimming instructor certificate. Coming from a rural background and recognizing that drownings are the second leading cause of injury/ death for children in Canada, I am determined to take action in lower this statistic.

Tell me about yourself/your background/ your history.

I was born in Fairholme Colony, 30 minutes southwest of Portage la Prairie on the 305 highway. I’m the third child of six, five sisters and one brother. Growing up on a Hutterite colony, with its array of experiences: chasing cows, picking Saskatoons, fishing, horse riding, biking, hiking on picturesque trails in the Assiniboine River Valley, fostered in me an immense love for nature. On June 12, 2016, I married Gilbert Hofer, and consequently moved from my birth home to his home at Green Acres Colony near Wawanesa. Here I once again have fallen in love with the natural surrounds: the steep, winding Souris Valley, which winds its way around Green Acres Colony.

How did you become interested in your field of study?

I became interested in education, after obtaining my grade 12 diploma, when through necessity I was asked to act as an educational assistant in our elementary classroom. This experience helped me realize my love for teaching and my comfort in the elementary classroom.

What is your philosophy in life?

My philosophy in life, is justly expressed by Sarah Kay’s 2011 TED talk. I believe as Sarah says, “Despite the fact that the number one rule to being cool is to appear unphased, which is obtained by facing life with clinched fist, I however will go through life with my hands wide open. Even if that means I catch all the pain, it also means that I’m ready to catch whatever beauty life can offer me. I believe that one should always apologize, but don’t ever apologize for the way your eyes never stop smiling, don’t apologize for being overly-excitable, for feeling too much. Even if you are labelled as naïve, remember this world is made of sugar, and even as it crumbles around you, don’t be afraid to reach out and taste it.”

Where do you see yourself in the future?

In the future I see myself teaching elementary grades at Green Acres Colony School, hopefully instilling in my students the same insight as to the world of opportunities education offers.

Nominator’s Comments

I would like to nominate Judith Maendel.

Judith Maendel attended my 2016 spring course, 30.274 Introduction to Creative Writing.

She was a lively, vibrant participant in the course, who raised the level of discussion and engagement in every class with her alert, heartfelt, witty, talented contributions. As a Hutterite student, she exhibited enormous intelligence, grace and insight in the negotiation of intercultural matters. She is a gifted writer, and will be a great teacher.