Thriving Teachers, Schools, and Communities
In this episode, the hosts are joined by Amelia Azul-Elgas, learning experience designer/online community engagement specialist on the Healthy Learning team in WGU’s School of Education. Together, they explore the traits and characteristics that can help create environments where teachers and students will thrive. Azul-Elgas talks about taking a research-based, character-focused approach that contributes not only to the well-being of the teacher, but also to the classroom, school, and the community it serves. They share empirical data and results from 500 worldwide studies with more than half a million students to understand what works in this holistic approach that begins with self-reflection and includes compassion, empathy, respect, critical thinking, and other key proven characteristics to positively impact teachers while also creating healthy thriving classrooms. The panel also shares personal and professional experiences that highlight the importance of teacher candidates having this training embedded in their curriculum to build resilience and reduce burnout.
About Amelia Azul-Elgas
Amelia Azul-Elgas is a former classroom teacher who worked with more than 3,000 pre-service teachers as faculty in the WGU School of Education during her first seven years at WGU. She currently serves as learning experience designer/online community engagement specialist on the Healthy Learning team in WGU’s School of Education. She is also the elected director of membership for the WGU Latinx Employee Resource Group. With over 25 years of experience in education, community, and government organizations, Amelia is passionate about advancing equity and thriving in education. She holds a master’s degree in Education from UC Berkeley, and a bachelor’s degree in Humanities and Community Development from New College. She also has a certification in trauma-informed Dynamic Mindfulness from Niroga Institute.