School District of Pickens County names SWU alum Teacher of the Year
The announcement was made before more than 2,500 school district employees, volunteers, parents and community leaders who attended a kick-off meeting for the 2007-2008 school year Aug. 17 in Littlejohn Coliseum at Clemson University. Dr. Lee D’Andrea, superintendent of the school district, congratulated Grant, calling her an outstanding representative of the district.
Grant graduated from Southern Wesleyan University with a bachelor of arts degree in English-secondary education in 1982. She began her teaching career at Liberty High School in 1983, where she taught for 21 years before moving to Easley High School in 2004. This past year, Grant was named Teacher of the Year at Easley High School. Grant also serves on the graduation, homecoming and awards committees at Easley High School.
Grant enjoys teaching character and content through the universal themes of literature and strives to equip her students for future academic success. She credits her success to her professors at SWU for their inspiration and challenges.
As a student, she initially aspired to become a college professor of English. However, Dr. Laura Black inspired Grant to make a positive difference in the lives of teenagers as a high school teacher. She also credits Dr. Gloria Bell for encouraging her to declare a major in English. Looking back on her years at SWU, Grant realizes the demands placed on her by professors have helped her to excel in the teaching profession. Dr. Hal Robbins and Dr. Ted Jennings, Grant recalls, stressed the need for her to be well-prepared, well-rounded and to reach her fullest potential as a teacher.
Grant has seen a lot of change in 24 years of teaching. Computers have brought a new level of interactive technology into the classroom. Also, teenagers have changed greatly during her 24 years of teaching, she said.
She stresses two areas that have not changed: students want to be respected as individuals and teens need positive adult role models. Grant says that SWU made a profound impact on her teaching style and teaching skills.
“Teaching is a unique ministry, and SWU empowered me to simultaneously teach character and content, ” said Grant. “I have given my life to educating students, and the opportunities to encounter new challenges and new blessings have been plentiful.”