One of BFA’s youngest faculty members, Caitlin Madeiros, is excited to start her life in the education field. She is a paraeducator dedicated to connecting with students and having an impact on the people she works with, and she said she “can bring a lot of new things to a school being just out of college and having a lot of fresh ideas.”
Madeiros is fresh out of Bridgewater State University in Bridgewater, Mass. which she says is a “teacher college.” She graduated with a bachelor’s degree and has her teaching license in history. While also working at BFA, she is working on her Master’s in Special Education at UVM.
Right now, she’s working alongside BFA teachers to be a support for students. If a student needs help, they can ask her in person or send an email. Madeiros helps out in geometry in construction, video literature and sociology of crime. She believes that BFA has great opportunities for students, and that is one of the main reasons she chose to work for BFA above other Vermont high schools.
Although Madeiros is young, she isn’t inexperienced. She spent the entire second semester of her senior year of undergraduate school at Bridgewater State University student teaching at a high school in Massachusetts. Student teaching started off gradually, but soon she got the opportunity to teach the class independently. Teaching two world history classes at different sophomore levels, as well as a U.S. history II class all the way through distance learning, solidified her passion for teaching.
“It taught me a lot about the impact you can have on students right away. I made a lot of great connections with those students, and it was very hard for me to leave them when the COVID shutdown happened. . . it was like my first real teaching experience, [and I thought], what if I don’t like it, and I built myself up to this and I don’t like it?” Madeiros then said, “… that definitely was not the case.”
Whether or not she wants to take the path of special education or teaching history is still up in the air. But one thing is certain: she wants to teach at the high school level. Madeiros went through a lot of heavy, traumatic things during high school, but her teachers didn’t let her drown in it.
“… I don’t think I would have done a lot of the things that I did do without my high school teachers and the things that high school gave me… my teachers pushed me to try really hard in school, so I could get scholarships, I could go to college, I could get involved so that I didn’t have to think about all the stuff that was going on, and I really want to be that for other high school students because that really changed my life,” Madeiros said.
Besides teaching, Madeiros has an enthusiasm for tap dancing. She dances not only for fun, but professionally. Madeiros has been tap dancing her entire life, and she says “it’s something that is almost a bad habit to a point.”
When Madeiros was younger, she always imagined she would be a teacher when she got older. Her life goal is to have a positive impact on as many students as she can. Now that she has started down the road of education, she can start to “be the change [she wishes] to see in the world.”