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Student Profile - Emma Carter

Emma Carter

GSE programInclusive Elementary Educator Program (IEEP)
Undergraduate program: BS, Art Studies, Portland State University

Emma Carter has always enjoyed working with young people, and has known that she wanted to be an educator since high school. An introductory special education course at PSU piqued her interest and she began working with students with diverse learning needs. Her emphasis is the individual student and what they need to be successful. Hard work and focus are the core values that Emma believes are central to the success of special education. She hopes to eventually teach abroad, perhaps venturing into adult special education or even integrating music and art into her curriculum. Emma believes in the importance of looking at a person and their uniqueness before making assumptions based on how they look, or what might be true about them or their abilities.  

Hear what Emma has to say after her first year in the program

Hear what Emma has to say after two terms in the program

 

Hear Emma prior to starting the program

 

1. Why did you choose the Special Education (SPED) program at Portland State University?

The main reason that I chose the SPED program at PSU was because of my positive impression of the program that I had gotten from the GSE faculty members who I have come into contact with during my minor and undergraduate studies here at PSU.  I have enjoyed my time at PSU while I was working on my bachelor's degree and appreciate the diverse, urban campus environment.

2. Why education? How did you know that you wanted to be an educator?

I have always enjoyed working with young people, and have known I wanted to be an educator since high school, however SPED specifically only peaked my interest in the past couple years while taking an introductory Special Education class for my minor at PSU.  I was very interested in working with students who have diverse learning needs and focusing on the individual student and what they need to be successful.

3. What have you learned about yourself since you started the Special Education (SPED) program at Portland State University?

I have learned the importance of hard work and focus.  It has become apparent that working in Special Education takes both of those qualities to be a successful and great educator in this field. 

4. Where do you see yourself in the next five to ten years? What are your personal and professional goals?

I hope to work in Special Education after completing the program, and have a goal of teaching internationally at some point in my career.  I look forward to the opportunities that may present themselves in this field, such as working in a more community based program for adults with disabilities, or perhaps utilizing my art and music background in my special education career. 

5. What lessons have you learned within the program that have helped you outside school?

Since I've began working with individuals with disabilities, as well as began graduate school, I have been reminded time and time again how important it is to look at a person and their uniqueness before making assumptions based on how they look, or what I think will be true about them or their abilities.  This idea has such wide reaching implications inside as well as outside of school.