For Alexandra Paspalas’ family, ‘take your daughter to work day’ was a success.
Shadowing her father and mother around the school environment, where her father worked as a technology education teacher and her mother a school nurse, Paspalas was inspired and discovered she “loved being in that environment.”
Now, as a senior Technology Education major graduating in the Spring, Paspalas plans her own exciting career as a Tech Ed teacher.
“Technology Education/STEM is a rapidly growing field,” said Paspalas. “There is always something new to learn and I love that challenge.”
Pursuing her Tech Ed interests outside of the classroom, Paspalas is on the E-board for STEM Educators Society, a club that hosts fundraisers and events for the department. As well as fundraise and spread awareness of Tech Ed, the club also helps organize and volunteers at the NJ Technology Students Association (TSA) conferences held at local middle and high schools.
Being so involved in Tech Ed on campus has allowed Paspalas to develop friendships with many of her Tech Ed cohorts.
“Being such a small department, we are all extremely close,” reflected Paspalas. “We take most of our classes together and really get to know each other throughout our years here at TCNJ.”
Paspalas will continue her Tech Ed passion throughout the summer at The Valley Program in Bergen County, New Jersey, where she is currently an aide. The Valley Program offers twenty-four all inclusive classrooms for children three to eighteen years old. These classrooms are unique in that a multitude of resources are offered to students with autism and related learning disabilities, such as applied behavioral analysis, speech therapy, occupational and physical therapy, parent clinics and real work skill training.
“It is a privilege to be able to work with these amazing students and such knowledgeable teachers and I am excited to be back there this summer!” said Paspalas.
In addition to leading students in all-inclusive classrooms, Paspalas will be leading her local swim team to victory, where she has served as a coach for the past six summers.
Paspalas has “always wanted to be a teacher.” Now, whether it’s helping middle and high schoolers organize technology conferences, direct the STEM society to success, guiding her all-inclusive classrooms or coaching her swim team across the finish line, Paspalas may certainly proclaim herself as both teacher and leader in the Tech Ed world and beyond.