To me, learning together means learning from each other whether it be peer-to-peer or from the students. We each have different training, life experience, ideas, views and feelings. If we each learn from the people around us, we will all continue learning together.
Casey Darnell, originally from Elkin, North Carolina, serves as an Administrative Support Specialist at the Academy at Elkin. Darnell has an Associate Degree from Wilkes Community College.Read on to learn more:
Why did you choose to work at the Academy at Elkin?
I saw posts from a teacher on social media about how great it was to work here, the impact they were having on the students and to come join the team. When the position for the front office came open I knew it was an opportunity I couldn't pass up.
What's your favorite part about working at the Academy at Elkin?
I love seeing how the students' personalities evolve throughout the year. Although I started mid-year, I can still see growth in many who are just opening up and becoming confident in themselves.
How are you impacting education in your community?
Although my role isn't an educational role, I do get to see students as they come into the office which allows me to build relationships with them. I get to listen or give a hug if someone is having a bad day. I also get to hear about new pets, siblings and exciting trips. I feel like it creates an atmosphere where they feel heard and cared for. I've seen how these interactions can change the trajectory of their day and help them feel ready to go back to class and learn.
What was your favorite subject when you were in elementary school?
“Learning together” is a core commitment of the Academy at Elkin. What does "learning together" mean to you?
To me, learning together means learning from each other whether it be peer-to-peer or from the students. We each have different training, life experience, ideas, views and feelings. If we each learn from the people around us, we will all continue learning together. For example, a student came to the office for a break, and she explained to me that taking turns asking random questions helps her feel better when she's anxious. I was able to learn a technique from that student that I can use with her moving forward.
Just for fun, what is your favorite candy?