Skip to Main Content

Teaching the teachers: Education alumni share their stories

Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Teaching the teachers: Education alumni share their stories

College instructor with student teaching child

Grace Horn, Morgan Herrmann, Korina Colliver and Shannon Workman are separated in age by up to 25 years and nearly 55 miles, but their education and career paths are the common thread.

The four women chose Chippewa Valley Technical College to pursue their dreams of teaching future generations.

Horn and Workman graduated from the Foundations of Teacher Education program in 2022 and 2023, respectively. Earning this two-year associate degree has given Horn and Workman the opportunity to become an instructional assistant or paraprofessional.

Horn, 22, of Eau Claire, heard about the program from a friend. It appealed to her to learn more about the world of education while attending a two-year College.

“For as long as I can remember, my passion was to become a teacher,” said Horn, who graduated from North High School. “Because of the program, I was able to get experience in the field of education.”

Before she began her education at CVTC, Horn thought she might want to pursue an education in special education. However, after learning about other options, she’s not on the path to becoming a Family and Consumer Science educator.

“In Family and Consumer Science education, I will be guiding students to pursue an occupation that interests them and that they will excel at,” she said. “There are opportunities for collaboration with the community as an educator that I am thrilled to be able to explore.”

Workman, graduated with the same degree and is taking a different path. The 47-year-old Barron woman said she sought out an education at CVTC to better her life and gain the knowledge she needed to fulfill her dream of becoming an English Learner teacher.

Since graduating from CVTC, Workman enrolled in Grand Canyon University working towards her Bachelor of Science degree in Elementary Education with an emphasis in English Learner. She also landed an English Learner teaching position with first and second grade students at Woodland Elementary school in Barron. 

“I love my role. I love teaching children and watching them grow and succeed,” Workman said. “It enhances the community by knowing the families that I work with have someone who can advocate for them and their child’s education.”

Modestly, Herrmann and Colliver have similar thoughts about the role their guidance and leadership play in the community. They graduated from the Early Childhood Education Program in 2020 and 2023, respectively.

Herrmann, 31, current assistant director of Days Gone By Early Learning in Eau Claire, said she realized her love of early childhood education when she transferred from a university to CVTC in 2012. Eventually, she left CVTC to work at her current organization.

“When I made the decision to return and finish my degree in 2019, CVTC advisors and instructors helped work with me to obtain credit for prior learning and put credits form my previous time in school towards my degree,” she said. “This helped me finish my degree much faster and made it possible for me to still work fulltime while attending school.”

Herrmann’s degree made it possible for her to go from assistant teacher to lead teacher to closing coordinator to assistant director. She works with teachers to help them create successful classroom environments.

“I feel that my role here is vital to the community,” she said. “We hold ourselves to a high standard and pride ourselves on being a quality home for day care in the area. The experiences and connections I have made through my job have been amazing and I feel blessed to work in a position that makes a difference in the lives of families in our community.”

Colliver, 33, of Holcombe, was a paraprofessional for a 4K classroom. Now that she has her associate degree from CVTC, she is an elementary interventionist, substitute teacher and often works with the after-school program to help children with homework. 

“I needed a career change,” she said. “I knew I enjoyed working with children at the job I had at the time, so I decided to look into the education field.”

Now that Colliver is in the role she was meant to have, she is using her skills to help students learn by taking care of their needs.

“I love what I do. Children have a hard time learning until all their basic needs are met,” she said. “This school year, I was able to start a Care Closet that has basic hygiene supplies for children of all ages who want or need them.”

Colliver said she recognizes many people have to make tough decisions on where to spend their money. With the school district able to supply some basic need items, “families have one less thing to worry about,” she said.

“I wouldn’t have known how to ask for the grant for these items or properly use my voice to star the topic if it wasn’t for CVTC.”



Latest News at CVTC

Join Us To

Experience CVTC for Yourself

Explore CampusAttend an EventSchedule a Visit
I'm a(n)