A helping hand.
Samantha Watson, Alumna
Samantha Watson discovered at an early age that she had a gift for working with others who needed a helping hand. As a Special Education Assistant in the British Columbia school system, Sam is helping special-needs students transition from high school into a training program or into the workplace.
Contracting meningitis as a premature baby, Watson’s hearing loss and joint issues gave her insight and a compassionate edge that she used to tap into the needs of those who couldn’t always speak for themselves.
“In school, the teachers loved me because I would spend time with the students who couldn’t or wouldn’t communicate normally. I learned sign language from the Special Education Assistants that were assigned to my classmates, and would use it to help explain their lessons to them. I always knew how to put a smile on their faces, by finding out what was important to them and connecting with them on their level. My teachers would often place me beside these classmates because they knew I’d help them to communicate.”
When she learned about the Education Assistant program at Langara, she thought it was a perfect fit. After graduation, she began working right away in the New Westminster School District and as an Instructional Facilitator at Douglas College, before accepting a position with the Maple Ridge School District. As a behavioural interventionist, Watson is using her education to help guide her kids to exhibit more socially accepted behaviours, and in some cases, to learn how to advocate for themselves.
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Posted on: September 9, 2014