Elizabeth Nelson

Briefly describe your applied learning experience

I served as a site assistant at a Freedom School Site in Charlotte, North Carolina. Freedom School is a literacy-based program serving children in our local commmunity. Each day our scholars receive integrated reading curriculum (IRC), enriching afternoon activities such as field trips, two meals, and a snack prior to going home. As site assistant, I completed necessary paperwork, assisted volunteers and guests, and helped interns and their scholars.

How did you get involved in this applied learning experience and what did you hope to gain from it?

I found out about Freedom School since my local church sponsors Charlotte Freedom School Partners. I researched the program and applied in fall 2014. I served as a level 1 (rising first through third grade) intern summer 2014 and a site assistant summer 2015. I hoped to gain a great learning experience I could later apply as a future teacher.

What did you gain from this experience? What was challenging? What did you learn?

I gained a sense of community and feeling that I can make a difference. It was challenging not being able to change some of the hardships our scholars faced. I learned how to serve as an educator, mentor, and role model.

In what way will this experience make you a more viable candidate when you are seeking a job or applying for graduate study?

This experience makes me a more viable candidate when seeking a job or applying for graduate study since I served children in two different communities and found ways for everyone to come together to learn and find a sense of belonging. This serves a great purpose as I will apply to schools in different areas.