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Teresa McBride, Teacher Education Scholarship Winner, Fall I, 2010

Dominican University, in partnership with Bisk Education, Inc., is proud to recognize Teresa McBride – a language arts teacher from the Cathedral School of St. Jude in St. Petersburg, Florida – as one of five winners of the Bisk Foundation Teacher Education Scholarship for the Fall I, 2010 session. The scholarship supports the ongoing professional development of teachers who are making a difference in others’ lives.

A graduate student in Dominican University’s online Master of Arts in Education program with a concentration in Reading, McBride is recognized by her peers for her commitment to education and literacy. She recently shared her approach to teaching and elaborated on how the scholarship will help her continue making a difference in the lives of her students.

“While I may have not garnered a slew of awards, I’ve received many cards, letters and notes of thanks from supervisors, parents, students and colleagues over the last eight years. This feedback serves as a running testimony of how my teaching has made a difference in the lives of others,” asserted McBride. She noted that she is grateful “not only to be able to make a difference in the lives of my students, but to know that students have made all the difference in mine.”

Her teaching style is based in enthusiasm, and she strives to infuse her love for teaching into every lesson. “I try to pass along to my students the time and devotion shown to me in my early teaching career,” explained McBride. Many parents have remarked that she has a gift for finding the positive in each pupil – a skill that is evidenced by the numerous referrals and affirmations she has earned for helping her charges to succeed.

McBride engages in a variety of activities that are designed to inspire creativity, literacy and confidence in her students. After co-directing a junior high drama production, she received a letter of commendation from an attendee who noted that the play was “one of the finest performances I have ever experienced from this age level.” She also coordinates a sixth grade poetry recital each year, where each student memorizes and recites a poem, then describes the poet’s life. “This is a favorite among our parents,” she added.

When asked about her many other achievements, McBride described her contributions to the Cathedral School of St. Jude’s recent accreditation by the Florida Catholic Conference (FCC). She was instrumental in preparations, serving on the research team and documenting the information later presented to parents, faculty and FCC representatives. This presentation is now used as a model for other schools preparing for the accreditation process.

In addition to her accolades from peers and parents, McBride has earned the respect of her students. “I was named Best-Mannered Teacher by a student member of National League of Junior Cotillions,” she proudly shared.

Many of McBride’s accomplishments take place outside her classroom. For example, she helps seventh-graders lead the student body in raising funds for two local charities and serves as the student council co-chair. In that role, she coordinates messages from the student council to the St. Jude Morning News Show, and helps organize dances and a wide range of charitable drives.

McBride also serves on the review panel for Junior Honor Society applicants, who are judged on academic scholarship as well as service to the school and their community. To broaden her students’ understanding of the world around them, she chaperones a yearly seventh-grade field trip to the Newfound Harbor Marine Institute.

As for her future goals, McBride will continue to measure her effectiveness as a teacher by the success of her students. “The Bisk Foundation Teacher Education Scholarship will make it possible for me to grow the collection of notes from parents, students and supervisors that motivate me to continue making a difference in their lives,” she declared.

Since 1954, the Cathedral School of St. Jude has been known for its outstanding educators, who are dedicated to fostering a Catholic environment that nurtures and challenges individuals to realize their highest spiritual, academic, physical and emotional potential. McBride has proven to be adept at fulfilling this mission. As one of her colleagues noted, “Mrs. McBride enriches her students’ appreciation of classic literature and incorporates technology into her classroom. She also helps individual students with PowerPoint presentations, research skills, MLA-style citations and formal essay presentations. Mrs. McBride has outstanding integrity, talent, determination and strength of character.”

Together with Dominican University, Bisk Education is proud to salute Teresa McBride – a true everyday hero who is making a difference through the gift of education!