Tamara Wolcott Fisher
To retain education majors as teachers for the Georgia-Cumberland Conference, the Education Department created the “Passing the Torch” scholarship in 2014. This year five education majors from Southern Adventist University received the scholarship: Taylor Anderson, Michaela Davis, Kaylan Hartman, Jesse Hoffman, and Daniela Trejos.
Kevin Kossick, vice president for education, said, “Just as the ancient Greeks passed a lighted torch to one another during competition, we educators are excited to pass knowledge, purpose, and mission on to the next generation of teachers. This initiative has been doing just that for several years, and we intend to remain committed to the best teaching candidates the Conference can produce.”
“Two years ago, I went to Kosrae, Micronesia, as a student missionary. While teaching third and fourth grade, I fell in love with my students and found that I could make my classroom a safe space for those students. I want to be a teacher because I want to continue to impact the lives of future generations,” says Michaela Davis, a junior liberal arts, elementary education major and member of the Georgia-Cumberland Academy Church in Calhoun, Ga.
Kaylan Hartman, junior elementary education major who attends the Collegedale Church in Tenn., hopes to emulate her grandfather. “I would hear my mother and other students talk about all the different ways he would make class interesting. It always made me want to be in his class.” Her grandfather’s legacy encourages Hartman and motivates her. “I hope to take after him and be a great teacher for my students; one that not only makes class exciting, but also creates lasting relationships with my students.”
“God has been leading and guiding me through this program, when I was faced with tough decisions or hard times,” said Taylor Anderson, senior elementary education major who attends the South Bay Church in Chattanooga, Tenn. She adds that God guided her into the teaching professor, because she had thought she was going to become a nurse.
Daniela Trejos, junior liberal arts education major from the Brunswick Hispanic Church in Georgia, said teaching is her calling. “God has given me a soft heart for children, the patience to teach, and a caring personality to go the extra mile for others. Seeing that ‘aha!’ on a student’s face when they understand something fills me with joy every time! Receiving this scholarship was definitely another sign from God that teaching is where He wants me to be.”
“When I officially changed my major to elementary education, I felt peace about my decision,” said Jesse Hoffman, senior liberal arts education, elementary education major, who attends the Collegedale Church in Tenn. “As I have progressed through my education in becoming a teacher, God has shown me (and is still showing me) where my strengths are, as well as my weaknesses.”
Georgia-Cumberland | December 2019