Jacey Ellis plans to become a kindergarten or first grade teacher in the future. When Jacey isn't studying, she enjoys going home and spending time with her family, friends, boyfriend, and dog.
Jacey Ellis thrives at Iowa State as transfer student, guides others as peer mentor
Jacey Ellis knew before college that she wanted to go into elementary education; she also had her heart set on going to a smaller college. But during her first semester, she realized she had to make a change.
“It was just a feeling,” Jacey said. “I knew if I continued my four years [at the other school], I wouldn’t get everything out of [my education] that I wanted.”
Transferring schools can be difficult, but when Jacey arrived at Iowa State University, she found that it was one of the best decisions she ever made.
“I’m very organized, and I’m a very big planner, so it was hard for me to say, ‘This is not what I’m doing anymore; I’m switching,’” she said. “[The decision has] helped me relax a little bit to know that things will work out.”
Jacey has always loved Iowa State, so she knew it was the right place to transfer to. She especially appreciated the opportunities for real-world experience provided by the School of Education.
“It was important to me that I was [getting teaching experience] while I was learning, and I think that’s something that Iowa State has given me the best opportunity for,” Jacey said.
After adjusting to life at Iowa State, Jacey began helping other transfer students with their transitions as a peer mentor for the Future Teachers-Future Leaders learning community. In this role, she expanded her leadership skills by leading small group activities with students and acting as their primary resource if they needed help or had questions.
“I knew what it felt like to transfer from a different school, so I had that connection with them,” she said.
Jacey wants to teach kindergarten or first grade after graduation. Because she enjoys teaching that age range so much, she volunteers at Gilbert Elementary School in Gilbert, Iowa, in the same kindergarten classroom where she completed her practicum. She has developed a friendship with her supervising teacher there, and gained advice to help prepare her for her own future in the classroom. Jacey is grateful for all of the opportunities she's received and the knowledge she's gained at Iowa State.