Growing up, I was lucky to have been surrounded by Educators who instilled in me a love of learning. I earned my Honours Bachelor of Arts and Science in English and Zoology from the University of Toronto and my Bachelor of Education from the University of Ottawa. During my final year of study, I also completed an Applied Behaviour Analysis for Educators course at the Geneva Center. Since graduating, I have received Additional Qualifications in Intermediate Math, Co-operative Education, Adult Education and am currently pursuing an AQ in Guidance and Counselling. I have also continued to professionally develop in the areas of: ADHD and Autism, Anxiety in Children with Autism, Emotional Regulation, Transitioning into Adulthood, Developing Executive Functions as well as Developing Social Communication Skills.
I was first introduced to the world of Autism during my undergraduate studies. I was looking to gain experience in working with children with varying abilities and my search brought me to Autism Ontario, Camp Bonaventure in Calgary and various volunteering opportunities. During my 4 years at Autism Ontario, I had the great opportunity to program camp activities for children and adults diagnosed with ASD. The experience and time I spent with Autism Ontario truly inspired me to further my professional development in this field. After graduation, I sought to bring my knowledge abroad and learn different teaching techniques from Educators in other countries. So I packed my bags and moved to Japan to teach under the JET Program. While in Japan, I lived in a small town and taught at a school for students with varying needs. This year was filled with invaluable experience that truly taught me the power of collaboration to ensure student success, the value of natural environment teaching, supporting students and developing their independence. Upon returning to Canada, I worked at various private schools for students with special needs which eventually led me to the Lighthouse as a teacher and now, the Director of Education. I have been in the field of Autism for more than 10 years. Each year has brought new learning opportunities, professional growth and exciting challenges. I look forward to learning more, applying new skills and growing with your child. I truly believe that all students are capable of achieving so many things when given the right support, encouragement and space to explore their interests!