Nicole Meserth, special programs teacher, is Broughton Teacher of the Year.
“Ms. Meserth cares deeply about students and their progress in high school and in life. She has worked incredibly hard over the last six years at Broughton to ensure that each of her students receives the skills they need to be successful in the workplace,” said principal Elena Ashburn.
Meserth has been teaching at Broughton for six years, but she has been involved in teaching much longer than that. She and her husband helped coach volleyball for the Broughton team.
She was inspired to be a teacher by her mother.
“I remember being in my mother’s classroom with my feet dangling from the “big kid” desk chairs and just knowing that I was going to be a teacher,” Meserth said.
As she got older she saw the hardships that a teacher experienced, such as grading, lesson planning, and the difficulty of juggling job with family, which led her to a different career path.
She attended the College of Idaho and University of Portland in Portland, Oregon. When she entered college she was set on being a teacher but she found a profession she enjoyed more, which was helping people find professions that matched what they enjoyed to do, which led her back to the route of teaching.
Now she teaches Pre-Occupational Preparational Courses that focus on getting students ready to enter the workforce. She describes it as her “dream job”. Pre-Occupational Preparational Courses are meant to teach students certain skills and attributes they would need in order to be successful at a job interview or in the workforce. The subjects can range from basic life skills to how to talk to a potential employer.
Her goal everyday is to engage students not just in activity within Broughton, but in the community surrounding Broughton. She encourages students to live their life to the fullest, so why not make an impact on someone else’s. She wants students to know that “life isn’t just a passive activity and it really isn’t about what you have done but what you are doing.” Meserth said.
Her favorite thing to do as a teacher is to see students truly understand a code switch. In simple terms, a “code switch” is when your speech, actions, body language, and choices change based off of the situation you are in.
She “loves helping students learn what “voice” to use in particular situations in order to get the results that they are seeking.”
People can tell she is passionate about what she does because of the way she cares about students. She takes teaching beyond the level of encoding information into a students brain. She cares about how the students apply the skills they learn to get real-life results. She says it all comes together when she can “see a student beam with pride as they show me their first paycheck,”Meserth said.
She also loves the Broughton community. She describes it as a “incredibly diverse student population that bring countless perspectives to any learning situation.” Although Broughton can be tradition oriented sometimes, she said that she loves that we mix the old with the new.
Meserth is ecstatic about her award. She has positive advice for students.
“This is your school and your time to learn, grow, flirt, gain new perspectives and teach others what you have learned. I’ll help and facilitate and grow along the way with you but our students need to feel like this is your opportunity to do high school,” Meserth said.