Director, PlayMakers Castaic
I’ve worked in Early Education since 1998 when I was recruited to work at a Preschool part time. Although I was a Psych major, I realized after a few years that working with children and their families meant much more to me than a college job. I explored working in different classrooms and even helped with administrative tasks. Eventually I was offered a position as a Director and the rest is history, I’ve been a Director since 2006. I was invited to Little iLEADers/PlayMakers in 2018, where many of my dreams for early childhood have been realized. Working for an organization that puts learners and quality care at the fore-front of any decisions made and where children’s imagination and individuality are celebrated and respected is incredible.
What do you consider to be your greatest professional achievement so far?
I went back to school and got my Masters Degree in Child Development, while working full time and taking care of my favorite little people. It was incredibly exhilarating to be in a learning space again, pushing myself through endless research papers, and knowing early on no matter how hard and how I wanted so badly to give up that letting go of a goal I had for so long was far too important to me. I always dreamt of getting an advanced degree since I had finished my BA in Psychology. Having this additional education really helped me focus on the learner-led, relationship based philosophy we stand for at PlayMakers Preschool.
On Sunday mornings, you can usually find me…
With my favorite people – my husband Jorge, daughter Mariah, and son Cruz. We love church, the beach, eating yummy food, and traveling to new places!
What was your favorite subject in school?
Overall English was my favorite subject – but my favorite class depended largely on the teacher.
Flashback to when you were 10 years old. What do you want to be when you grow up?
I remember playing “school” often so it seems education was always my pathway. I don’t think I thought about it much at 10 years old, I was just busy playing with my Barbies, Street Hockey, and watching reruns of the Mickey Mouse Club.
What inspired you to pursue a career in this field, and how does it align with your passions and interests?
I actually had a horrible preschool and early education experience personally. I was labeled the bad kid for behavior challenges, but not until 4th grade did a teacher actually take interest in helping me feel supported and recognized. I’m not sure I made the connection when I entered the field at 18 years old, but I did understand how an educator that valued learners as individuals and capable could lead that child to be successful.