Tiffanie Gradick tried returning to school 16 years ago, but she wasn’t ready. Then four years ago, her life changed and this mother of three was more than ready to prove to herself and her children that you can accomplish great things.
Tiffanie works for the Garland ISD as a vocational adjustment class (VAC) job coach for Special Education 12th graders. She assists students with on the job training and job placement at the end of the school year.
“It is such a rewarding job,” she says. “This is my passion. I have worked with younger children with disabilities and have a big heart for them. I have learned so much about classroom management and the children—everyone is different and has their own way of learning and understanding.”
In October, Tiffanie enrolled in the Bachelor of Arts in Special Education degree program at WGU Texas. “Now is the perfect time to pursue my dream of becoming a teacher. It was time four years ago, and now I’m ready.” She wants to continue working for the school district and is ready to “buckle down and earn my degree and teaching certification.”
To help make that dream a reality, WGU Texas awarded Tiffanie a $2,000 Become a Teacher Scholarship during a surprise presentation at her school. Her Garland ISD co-workers have been her cheerleaders, supporting her efforts to go back to school and are ready to see her succeed. The scholarship award puts her one step closer to becoming a teacher.
As a WGU Texas student, Tiffanie says she loves the resources and one-on-one support. The competency-based format has allowed her to accelerate and move quickly through coursework. She has already completed seven courses and is on track to graduate in January 2020.
Tiffanie wants to continue her education to become an Autism Specialist or Speech Pathologist. “My oldest child will be attending high school soon and I want to prove you can do anything you put your mind to,” she said. “Earning this degree is just the start of my journey to be able to do what I love!”
If your own classroom is calling, WGU Texas can help you answer the call. WGU’s teaching programs are rated in the top one percent in teacher preparation nationwide by the National Council on Teacher Quality. The WGU Become a Teacher Scholarship is worth up to $2,000 and can be applied toward any of WGU’s Teachers College degree programs leading to teacher licensure. Applications are accepted through December 31, 2018.