Chadeen Clarke has been taking Early Childhood Education & Child Care classes at HCC since 2019. “I love, love, love taking care of children. It is my passion,” she says. “I have been providing child care for 11 years. I wanted to open my own day care and preschool, so I researched what I needed to do, and that led me to HCC.”
Clarke found the flexibility of HCC’s courses very attractive. “I work two jobs, and do not have time to travel to a campus to take a class, so this was perfect for me,” she says. With the flexible online design, Clarke could access the assignments and organize her classwork based on her own schedule. “The instructors post an outline of all the work you need to do. It is very clear.”
The online classes also provided opportunities to connect with other students. Instructors posed questions and students responded on a class discussion board. “I learned new techniques of dealing with children in crisis and other situations,” says Clarke. “Each student offered ideas, based on their own experience and perspective. Plus, my instructors were easily available. They responded to my questions quickly.”
One of Clarke’s favorite classes was Communication Skills for Child Care Professionals. “I learned how to better communicate with families, especially in writing,” she says. “I usually preferred talking to people rather than writing emails or texts. But now I am much more comfortable doing that.”
Because of the coronavirus pandemic, Clarke had to put her plans for opening her own day care on pause. Presently, she is working at a residential facility for children. “I apply the skills that I learned through HCC every day,” she says. “All those classes are tied in and are helping me at my job right now.”
Clarke attributes her ambition and motivation to being a Jamaican immigrant. “My ultimate goal is still to open my own child care and preschool center,” she says. “I totally enjoyed the experience I’ve had at HCC. I wouldn’t change anything. I am looking forward to taking even more courses.”
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