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Sharles Thompson, a Vinton County High School graduate, is currently studying abroad in the Netherlands as part of the Ohio University-sponsored Consortium for Overseas Student Teaching (COST) program.
The COST program allows teacher candidates the opportunity to live and student-teach abroad in English-speaking classrooms for a semester. And, while the application process was extensive, Thompson notes that it was very manageable and the staff was extremely helpful. Ultimately, Thompson was particularly attracted to the program because of the wide variety of benefits to future teachers.
“I was able to incorporate the program into my degree with no problem,” said Thomson. “The two go hand in hand. “
Thompson pursued her higher education at OU-C directly out of high school. She selected the campus thanks to its close-to-home location and affordability. After a few years, she enrolled in the early childhood education program inspired by its opportunity for creativity.
“The teaching field allows for all the creativity a person desires to put in. This goes from decorating the classroom to creating individualized instruction to students who are in need to something different than traditional lecture style teaching.”
Through the COST program, Thompson is hoping to gain experience so she is better prepared to reach her future students. By learning how to function in a totally foreign environment with people she has never before interacted with, Thompson will be better equipped to look at the classroom with a perspective that is unmatched.
“I will be able to see through the students’ eyes when they feel foreign themselves. Being able to recognize these kinds of things, I can take certain action to make them feel welcome and just as much a part of the class as everyone else thus creating a more beneficial learning experience. “
Thompson has held numerous jobs in her community, all of which have prepared her for working with the public in various ways. From working for the county, convenience store management, working in a local bank as well as a restaurant, Thompson believes these positions have helped prepare her for creating the relationships needed for instruction.
Thompson is no stranger to the classroom. She has interned in Vinton, Ross and Hocking counties, where she has had the opportunity to observe a variety of different classrooms, districts and teaching strategies.
In her free time, Thompson spends time with her family and is quite an adventurer. She is an avid motorcycle rider and also enjoys extreme thrills such as skydiving. Additionally, Thompson spends time with her church family, participating in services and other church-related studies.
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