WRITTEN BY MICHELLE DZISIAK • 3 min

Michelle is a Marketing Specialist with a background as a classroom teacher.

teacher certification program student kevin dupont

This month we are excited to shine a spotlight on Kevin. Kevin is a successful graduate of the Teacher Certification Program in Arizona. Motivated by his interest in encouraging and guiding future leaders, Kevin knew teaching was a career he wanted to pursue

Since he already had a Master’s degree and was working full-time, an alternative teacher licensure program was the perfect pathway for Kevin to earn a sought-after U.S. teaching certification and open opportunities for him to work both locally and abroad.

While Kevin obtained certification in high school English, he’s been able to utilize his teaching license and Teach Away’s job board to find a job as a Career Counselor and Head of Department at a high school in Dubai.

Be proactive. So many doors will open up for you soon enough, all you have to do is be ready for them!

Let’s dive in to hear about Kevin’s experience with the Teacher Certification Program in Arizona and how it helped him pursue his dream career while maintaining his full-time job. 

1. What drew you to pursue a career in teaching? Was this a lifelong dream or a new interest?

I was drawn to a career in teaching because I wanted to guide potential leaders as they understand their own journeys toward a career and pathway in life. While my primary role now is working as a counselor, my teaching certification was always something that I sought after, just did not know how to obtain it until I found TCP!

2. Why did you decide to take an alternative route to become a licensed teacher instead of the traditional education path? 

I had already completed a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree, plus had a full-time job by the time I began TCP, so a traditional education path was far from what I was able to handle. TCP gave me the chance to not only earn my certification but work in a role that directly allowed me to implement what I was learning each day!

3. Has your alternate route to certification been manageable while juggling your other responsibilities? 

The coursework was relevant and just enough where I felt that I could focus my time accordingly on everything that I had been responsible for. This was especially the case in the first period of the program, where you can have quite a few assignments each week.

4. What is the most valuable thing you’ve learned so far? 

There is always support out there as an educator, one is never alone!

5. Was there a teacher in your life who inspired you? If so, who was it and what impact did they have on you? 

Of course, there are many individuals who have inspired me, I cannot name just one and give reasons, but my high school Algebra II teacher, Mrs. Berard, Spanish teacher, Mrs. Fougere, French teacher, Mrs. Eddlem, and English teacher, Mrs. Willis, where all major influences in how I manage my classroom and learning environments. 

6. What area of teaching are you specializing in? Why did you choose it?

My certification is in Secondary English but because of my degrees, I can also teach Political Science/History, and Social Studies. I chose to be certified in English because I found that this was directly transferable to many areas, especially counseling, and could be more sought-after around the world, as working abroad has always been my career goal.

7. Are you currently working in a teaching capacity? If so, could you tell us a little bit about your experience teaching so far? 

Yes! I am currently the Career Counselor and Head of Department at an Emirati high school in Dubai and I love my role. While I am responsible for 790+ students each day, being certified in English allows me to directly be in the classroom and give lessons every day on college counseling, which I really enjoy! I owe TCP immensely for helping me find my current role, as it was found on the Teach Away website!

8. What is your favorite thing about working with students?

I really enjoy learning through action, so I always like to have students engage with something physically or debate current topics. This is what excites me as my students are going to be the next policymakers, so I feel like I am helping the initial stages of future endeavors grow!

9. What advice would you give to someone who is thinking about getting certified to teach? 

I would say that it is important to reflect on your own educational experience before going through this process. The best teachers are those who have come to terms with themselves before impacting the lives of others!

Are you thinking about becoming a teacher or making a career change?

Start your teaching career and find teaching jobs with Klassroom. Learn more about our online teacher certification program and become a teacher today!