After graduating with a bachelor's degree in early childhood education, Christina Smith will serve as a first-grade teacher at Whit Davis Elementary School in Athens-Clarke County. Before attending the University of Georgia, Smith didn't always enjoy school, but a few great teachers changed her perspective.
During primary school, Smith never wanted to be a teacher. However, over the years, she developed a connection with several instructors, who assessed her strengths and weaknesses in education, and ultimately helped push her forward. Smith said these relationships allowed her to understand the value of learning.
"The teachers in my younger years did a great job with integrating curriculum," Smith said. "They compared my strengths with the difficulties I had in learning across content areas, which changed my whole attitude toward school and learning."
Smith enjoys the sense of community in the Mary Frances Early College of Education.
"My faculty and professors inspire me because I'm the kind of student who likes to ask a lot of questions," Smith said. "They would let me come before and after class to pick their brain on issues that I am passionate about or just wanted their opinion on."