Everson wins Lieber teaching award

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Emma Everson, a Ph.D. student in Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, has won the Lieber Memorial Teaching Associate Award from Indiana University, which recognizes graduate students with distinguished achievements in teaching. 

Everson, who teaches A308—Legal and Ethical Issues for Teachers, said she was elated and honored to be recognized for her teaching practice: “Oftentimes, teachers are not recognized for the work they do. I work diligently every day to ensure I am providing my students with the education they deserve.”

 Her approach to teaching starts with the understanding that students cannot learn when they do not feel emotionally and socially well, which is why she relies on demonstrating a culture of care by ensuring her students know that she cares about them first –through one-on-one check-ins and knowing what is going on in her students’ personal lives that might affect their school work.

I want my students to remember me as ‘that one teacher’ that provided a safe learning environment and showed them how to unlock their potential and unique talents to reach for their dreams.

Emma Everson

“It has always been my mission to provide an environment where my students feel safe to express themselves and ask for help when they are struggling personally. Being an educator necessitates not only teaching academics, but also understanding that every student is an individual and their home environment ultimately impacts them on a daily basis in the classroom,” Everson said. “No level of outreach is too small to let students know you are thinking and care about them on a personal level. In my experience, this is what makes all the difference in the classroom and my students’ learning.”

Everson is currently working on her dissertation and recently finished data collection. She is examining the extent of K-12 teachers’ legal literacy pertaining to English Learner students via a newly-designed survey instrument, and also working as an English Learner Specialist at the Indiana Department of Education. She is passionate about how policies and laws impact the education of English Learners (ELs) in the K-12 classroom and said she loves being an advocate for ELs and collaborating with education stakeholders at a variety of levels to meet those students’ needs and to provide them with the education to which they are legally entitled. 

Through her research work – and through her teaching – Everson is making a difference in education. She hopes to inspire a love of learning in all her students. 

“I want to influence my students, and not just for that moment they are in my classroom. I want my students to remember me as ‘that one teacher’ that provided a safe learning environment and showed them how to unlock their potential and unique talents to reach for their dreams,” she said.

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