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A Sacramento Professor’s Mission Statement Of Education

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Susan Fanetti is an associate professor, coordinator of English Education and co-vice chair of the English Department at California State University, Sacramento. She has a PhD in American literature from Saint Louis University and is considered by many of her students to be a passionate, powerful and inspirational teacher.

(Photo Courtesy of Susan Fanett)

(Photo Courtesy of Susan Fanett)

How did you get started teaching?

“It was something I was interested in from a young age. When I declared an English major, I did so with the intent to teach.”

What is your advice to someone considering becoming an educator?

“Success in the field requires a sense of mission. The profession requires extra education, which means more expense of time and money, among other things. The financial compensation in the field is comparatively small. Something else—that sense of mission, of making a difference—is necessary to make the job fulfilling. It’s not a job you do because you can’t think of anything better—at least, you won’t do it well in that case. If you can remember every single day that you are changing your students’ lives, in ways small and large, then you can overcome the substantial challenges.”

Can you offer any advice to graduating students or job seekers?

“Take nothing lightly, present your best self and have someone else proofread your application packet.”

What challenges do tenured professors face that new educators may not?

“Tenured professors struggle, I’d say, with retaining their idealism and sense of mission. It’s important to stay ‘fresh’ in the field.”

What importance has a degree played in your life?

“Studying for my PhD was my best time as a student and scholar. My eyes and mind were opened wide, and I just took everything I could in. It’s changed the way I see and engage with the world, and since my job is about helping students understand how to see and engage with the world—and teaching them to help other students do the same—I’d say its importance is significant.”

Megan Bowyer is a freelance writer in search of the best food and drinks that Sacramento has to offer. You can find her at any number of dive bars or trendy restaurants; just look for the short blonde feeding the jukebox. Her work can be found at “Examiner.com

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