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Living and learning, 2000s

Submitted by Lisa Gestrine from Peoria, IL, USA
Elementary Education Alum
  • B.S. Elementary Education with a minor in Educational Technology '12
  • MEd Curriculum and Instructional Technology w/ a certification in Instructional Design '13

Iowa State University adventure leads to ideal career I hadn't known existed

When I set foot on Iowa State's campus in August 2008, I had every intention to change the world as an elementary education teacher. All I every wanted to be growing up was a teacher, and Iowa State University was going to be the starting point to make my dream a reality.

During my freshmen year of college, I had to take an educational technology course as a prerequisite for the teaching program, and I fell in love with the idea of combining technology and education.

This class inspired me to pursue a minor in Educational Technology. Through this minor I got to learn in more depth about how technology should be used in the classroom appropriately. With my new knowledge in this field, I wanted to take it to the classroom. I integrated iPads in both of my student teaching placements with kindergarten age kids and 4th graders.

I knew during my student teaching placement that teaching in the classroom was no longer my dream. I wanted to inspire others and train teachers how to use technology in the classroom. I saw the pure joy that students had when I introduced iPads to them, and the engagement level was astounding. Students were excited to come to school, and each day after, they asked when they were going to get to use the iPads again. I wanted other students to have this same experience, and I made it my mission to be a person in the field to help teachers be comfortable with using technology in the classroom.

My adventure started out as a direct path to become an elementary education teacher, but all the twists and turns during my adventure led me to a job that I never dreamed existed. Through my adventure I have had the privilege of working with top researchers in Human Computer Interaction, Instructional Design, and Educational Technology. Because of these experiences, I am now a person who gets to teach faculty how to use technology and try out the newest technology in the field.

After I graduated as a certified elementary teacher in Iowa, I went on to get my Master of Education degree in Curriculum and Instructional Technology. I am now an Educational Technologist for Iowa State University at the College of Veterinary Medicine.

In 2008, I would have never imagined being where I am today, but I know this is exactly what I am supposed to be doing at the place that shaped my adventure into what it is today.