Sandra Bacallao

Dear Dr. Warner,

My name is Sandra Bacallao and I am a graduate student in the Barry University Coral Springs Cohort Reading Program. I excitedly began my program in the Fall of 2010 and was quickly reminded of how much work there is to do as a student, besides all of my school work that I take home as a 2nd grade teacher.

As a mother of two college students, I have to admit that I found myself doubting why I started this program and whether or not it would truly be worth it at the end.

I already love my job and, in my moments of exhaustion, felt like I shouldn't have complicated things in my life. On the other hand, I have had such great support and guidance from my professors (Dr. Fischer, Mrs. Kelly Grady, and Dr. Roberts) that I felt invigorated and excited with every new lesson and strategy that I can bring in to my classroom. I am, after all, completing my 16th year as a teacher and realize that there is nothing like a reminder of why I love to teach and how I can bring a new excitement for learning to my students every day as well.

I am honored and proud to say that I was named the Teacher of the Year at St. Bonaventure Catholic School, where I have been teaching for the past 11 years. I think of myself as a woman of faith and always believe that there are no coincidences because God guides our path. I now know that God placed Barry University, my professors, and my classmates in my path for a reason. I know that I have been freshly jumpstarted into my career by my graduate program and am looking forward to every moment that I can continue to learn and grow as an educator.

I wanted to thank you, as my program chair, for unknowingly being a part of the blessings in my life, my professors and advisor, for inspiring me to be my best, and Barry University, for being the foundation for my continued growth and success as an educator for the remainder of my career, which is priceless to me.

Humbly and with gratitude,

Sandra Bacallao