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Career > Work

An Open Letter from a Future Educator

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.
This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at VCU chapter.

From the moment I walked into my second-grade classroom, I knew that I wanted to be an educator. From writing to reading to social studies, every subject entranced me. I felt that I needed to learn more and more. My second-grade teacher was like a mother to me and was not only able to teach me subject matters but taught me how to be a good listener, a helpful friend, and most importantly, a good person. 

I believe that education is one of the world’s most beautiful and essential things. Without school, where would we be? And, even more importantly, without educators, where would we be?

This question might be becoming more real by the day because it seems that no one truly wants to go into education anymore, or if they do, they are deterred by one single factor. Can you guess what that may be?

You guessed it: money.

All around the world, educators are incredibly underpaid for the amount of work that they put into their careers. Personally, I have seen so many of my peers abandon their dreams of being a teacher simply because of the low pay that is given. Teachers leave their jobs due to their salary, and no one is there to pick up the slack because the payment is unacceptable for most. How is this the world we are living in? What is life without school?

I hope things will get better, but that may be wishful thinking. We can only protest, unionize, and rally so much. I try my best to stay optimistic as I will enter this field of work in the next three years, but it is sometimes hard.

For a few years, I was even considering no longer pursuing the education field. I let all of these people get into my head, saying that I would make no money and be overworked far too much. Although both of these aspects are true about teaching, I almost let them deter me from what I am most passionate about. This should not be the case.

I strive to see a change in how educators are viewed in this society. Not only are we paid less than the vast majority of professions, but I also feel that we are not taken as seriously. I think that many educators are still seen as babysitters, which is so far from reality. Educators are there for students during their formative years and can shape them into intelligent, kind, insightful humans. Teachers genuinely have one of the most critical jobs in the world yet receive little to no credit. 

I don’t want this letter to be a sob story by any means, more as a wake-up call to our society. Education is not only an extremely vital profession in our community, but it is also one that deserves more respect from others. I am so excited to be an educator and help inspire the youth of the United States, but I also hope to receive regard from the other hard-working professionals I am surrounded by.

Just some food for thought. 

With love, from a future educator.

Irelyn Rogan is studying Elementary Education with a minor in Psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University. Irelyn is a third-year student, and this is her fifth semester as a HerCampus journalist! She is very interested in lifestyle, pop culture, and entertainment in general.