Kimberly Mueller ‘19

For Kimberly Mueller ’19, the support of her husband and her faith in God helped her achieve her goal of graduating from Trinity’s Adult Programs with a bachelor’s degree in art education on Dec. 14 and beginning a teaching job at Stony Creek Elementary School in District 126 in Alsip, Ill.

While it was challenging to balance family life, student teaching, homework, and the requirements of passing the Teacher Performance Assessment EdTPA, Mueller believes it is all part of God’s plan. “I feel I am meant to be an art teacher and share my talents with my students. I am proud of how far I have come,” she said.

Mueller began Trinity’s Adult Program at Trinity in 2016. Her first student teaching placement was at Prairie Junior High School, also in District 126. “I was unsure what to expect,” she said. But she was reaffirmed by how much she loved teaching art.

For her second student teaching assignment, which took place during the fall of 2019, she was placed at Alan B. Shepard High School in Palos Heights. “My first week of high school was tough. I did not think high school was for me,” she said. “But I continued to have faith in God.”

Just like at Prairie Junior High School, Mueller’s student teaching assignment consisted of getting to know the students and staff. After observing her cooperating teacher, she began teaching herself. She found that it was very hard to say goodbye at the end of her student teaching period, she said. “I met some very talented and awesome students. I now feel comfortable teaching high school and will miss my students.”

While Mueller was at Shepard, she was also doing research and writing for the EdTPA, a performance-based, subject-specific assessment and support system used by teacher preparation programs to emphasize, measure and support the skills and knowledge that all teachers need in the classroom.

“As I researched and wrote my EdTPA, I asked God for help and guidance,” she said. “I finally submitted my EdTPA about a week into my second placement. It took a month to get my scores back. All of my hard work paid off! My family was proud of me.”

While at Shepard, Mueller received an email about a job teaching art in District 126 at Stony Creek. “My former principal at Prairie Junior High referred me to the principal at Stony Creek. I went in for an interview and I got the job!” she said. “I could not be happier.”

Mueller begins teaching in January. “I feel Trinity has prepared me to be an excellent teacher. This journey has been beyond difficult, but God has a plan for me,” she said.