A message from Jessica La Rochelle, NITEP Assistant Director

It’s hard to believe that another year has gone by and we are welcoming a new group of students to the program. As I reflect on the past 12 months, I recall the many wonderful events held in celebration of the Year of Indigenous Education and I look forward to the initiatives and programming that the Faculty of Education has planned for the Year of Teacher Education. In celebration of the Year of Teacher Education, NITEP’s theme for 2013/14 is “Inquire Imagine Inspire.”

When I reflect on this theme I think of the importance of education and the impact it has had on my life. To say I was an inquisitive child is putting it mildly. I was affectionately known as “Little Miss Chatterbox” because I didn’t stop talking or asking questions until my curiousity was satisfied. And boy, was I curious! I also read a lot, especially if my questions were unanswered or led to further questions. I think reading and imagination go hand in hand. Growing up with my cousins, we were constantly using our imaginations to make up games and songs and were always looking for our next great adventure. Spending our summers in a small town, we felt safe enough to hop on our bikes and see how many parks we could find and play in until we had to be back at our grandparents’ house for supper. We didn’t need mobile phones, iPads, video games or social media; we had our imaginations to keep us entertained for hours on end. Looking back, I feel blessed to have a family who taught me how to be inquisitive, imaginative, and self-sufficient.

Reading through the student submissions for the Winter 2013 issue of the NITEP News, I am inspired by the individuals in our program. They are an impressive group and I cannot wait to see the positive impact they will have, wherever their inquisitiveness, imagination, and inspiration lead them. I am honoured to be a part of their journey.

Jessica La Rochelle | Lhkwemiya
NITEP Assistant Director