From a college career to becoming professionals Maureen Carrigg gets to witness students go through it all. She learns what each student’s dream is and tries her hardest to help them complete it.
Maureen Carrigg is both a student and instructor here at Northeast Community College. She has been a teacher for 30 years, teaching at Northeast, Wayne State and Elizabeth Seton College. At Elizabeth Seton College in New York, Carrigg was a lab assistant and taught audio production. She now teaches introduction to mass media at Northeast. Carrigg decided to teach because, “at the time I had three job offers, one for a freelancer for 60 minutes, sports entertainment for wrestling and for teaching. The dean at my college (Brooklynn College) said ‘go here for a year it will be fun and interesting.’ Which I did and ended up spending my whole life here and raising a family.”
Carrigg’s favorite thing about being a teacher is getting to be a part of a student’s life for a moment in time, watching them grow and become professionals. “It is a great honor and great privilege and I do not take that lightly. Getting to be a part of someone’s life at such a critical juncture,” Carrigg said. Experiencing students become professionals is so incredible it is also her favorite memory from class. “I love the times that I spent with students pursuing their dreams. If their dream was to be a sports castor, sitting down and doing that first game. Listening to them improve over the length of their college career to their professional career. That is a great benefit for the job, it’s not really the summers off as everyone says. I think that is the most rewarding and best thing about being a teacher.” Carrigg said.
With all the experience throughout the years, she has learned a few tips and tricks to help teach students in the most effective way. “I try to talk to them and find out what their hopes and dreams are and kind of point them in the direction of that dream. I say, ‘well let’s try this’ or ‘would you be interested in this’ and push them towards that area if I can.” Carrigg said. The number one tip to help students learn that she gives is to be hands on, get them up, active and working with each other. “I think that is more effective than standing in front of a power point.” Carrigg said. Advice that Carrigg gives to new teachers is to be patient, empathetic and be ready to adjust for who you have in the class. Teachers have to figure out with the personalities in the
class how to get that material to each individual in the classroom.
Many changes in the world have occurred over the last 30 years while Maureen has taught. “Social media, texting and 24/7 media have come around. I have had to rearrange and adjust that model as different things have come. There is a big adjustment there trying to stay current. Who is popular? It is hard and I don’t think you can keep up.” Carrigg said. She wants her students to know that she cares about them. “There is a method to the things I try to do. I try to find something current that I can relate to with the students. I usually try music at first because it is a universal language,” Carrigg said.