Member Spotlight: Shauna Alishea Torrington
AACTE’s Member Spotlight features an individual from a member institution, highlighting how their work makes a difference in classrooms across the country. Nominate yourself or another member by providing a response to the following questions and sending to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Get to know Shauna Alishea Torrington …
Position/Institution: Graduate Assistant-International Student and Faculty Services- Ohio University
Number of years in your position: Two years
Alma Mater(s): University of Guyana (2005); Twice alum of Ohio University (2015, 2017)
Hometown: Georgetown, Guyana, South America
- How long have you been a member of AACTE? I have been a member of AACTE?
I have been a member for three years.
- Why did you join AACTE?
I joined AACTE when I became a member of the Holmes Scholar Community at Ohio University.
- Why did you decide to enter the field of educator preparation?
I love to teach, and I know that good teachers make a difference I believe that the teachers have a very important role in the classroom and their preparation for that role is instrumental. My experience in teacher preparation was garnered as a graduate assistant working in the Teacher Education Department of Ohio University.
- What’s been your favorite or most memorable moment of your career so far?
My favorite and most memorable moment in my career is working with mentors in the field that valued my international experiences and area of expertise. Many of whom invited me to their class to talk with their teacher candidates about my experience in and out of the U.S. as a student and as a parent.
- What’s one thing—educator preparation-related or not—you learned in the last month?
I learned that self-care and a supportive community is invaluable. I also learned that sometimes it is okay not to be okay, especially during this pandemic.
- What has been the greatest challenge in your career?
My greatest challenge career wise is seeing educators that are unable to see their personal biases and who clearly do not see how harmful their behavior is to those in their care.
- What advice would you give someone who is interested in working in this field?
I would say go for it. The rewards are immeasurable, and you will have no regrets once you take the approach of being a lifelong learner and a change agent.
- Who or what inspires you?
My family inspires me. I learned what “through thick and thin” means with my family. The members of my family do not do things halfway. The simplest task is executed with excellence. My mother, the matriarch of the family, always says if you clean somewhere no one must ask you if it was clean. You must take pride in the simplest task. From my mother, I learned to be humble and to give my best in everything I do no matter how challenging it is. Every day I strive to make the members of my family proud of me. I am the last of all the siblings, so it is no easy task to live up to their expectations and to thrive for the best.
- What’s one thing people would be surprised to know about you?
People are surprise that I am the youngest of nine children and that I am not spoiled.
- What is your favorite part about being a member of AACTE?
My favorite part of being a member of AACTE is my attending conferences. At every conference, I have met persons with similar views as mine. I love the conferences for the unique opportunities of hearing so many guest speakers with lots of qualification in their specialty areas. I am surprised at how these experiences are easily linked to my experience as a Black woman from the Caribbean. I am moved every time I see thousands of teachers share my views about classroom equity and multicultural education and about just caring about our learners in general. As a graduate student, I am especially elated to visit the exhibit booths and get lots of great stuff and goodies that I can share as well as use when I return to my university classes.