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WGU Graduate Speaker, Julie Laub, Winter 2012

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WGU Graduate Speaker, Julie Laub, Winter 2012
Western Governors University
<p>Julie Laub of Kaysville, Utah, speaks at online university Western Governors University's commencement ceremony in Atlanta, February 11, 2012. Julie earned her teaching master's degree online through WGU's competency-based online education model, and was hired to teach chemistry at a local high school.</p> <p>Julie Laub earned her Master of Arts in Teaching, Science Education degree.</p> <p>Transcription of video:</p> <p>Good morning. It is an honor and privilege to speak to you on this momentous day. And may I first say a heartfelt congratulations to each of the graduates. Your hard work, steady perseverance, and enduring effort have got you to this moment. For that, we are given honor and esteem.</p> <p>As I reflect on my own educational experience, I realized what has brought me here today began a long time ago. When I was 12 years old I had to do science for a project. At that time my dad worked at a power company as a laboratory technician. He took me to work with him to get ideas for the science fair. He let me do titrations with phenolphthalein indicator for solids by oven drying and pH tests. I was hooked. It was from that experience that a love for chemistry was planted in my heart.</p> <p>Upon graduation from high school, I attended a junior college. I had an excellent professor that encouraged and strengthened my love for chemistry. I graduated with an Associate's Degree and transferred to the University of Utah where I earned a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry. I was fortunate to secure a job at DataChem Laboratories where I worked my way to an Organic Chemist II position. I worked in the semi-volatile gas chromatograph mass spectrometry organic department. And there wasn't an acronym for it. [Laughter]</p> <p>Through the course of working and going to college I met and married my husband. After working as an organic chemist for three years, we had our first child. When she was seven months old, with the support of my husband, I chose to lay down my career. Five children and fifteen years later, I have loved being at home taking care of our children.</p> <p>In August 2010, a subtle change entered to my life again, with the influence of my father. It was at the conclusion of our youngest daughter's birthday when my dad approached me. He told me he knows that I would be a good teacher. I love children. I love chemistry. He thought it would be a good fit. He and my mom offered to pay for me to go back to school to earn a teaching certificate. After much prayer, thought, and research, I took my parents up on their offer.</p> <p>On January 4th, 2011, I began a master of arts in teaching science at Western Governors University. And one of the many benefits of the degree at Western Governors University is the ability to accelerate coursework. That is exactly what I did. I completed 25 competency units in less than five months. I completed all of my coursework, research project, and pre-clinical work by May. In June 2011, I received a phone call from our local school district. A chemistry teaching position was open and the pool of chemistry applicants is low.</p> <p>My pre-clinical adviser recommended the district interview me. Through a flurried process one week later, I was offered and accepted a full time teaching position at a nearby high school. [Applause] Oh, thank you. I began work in August 2011 as well as the last 15 competency units of my degree. On December 14, 2011, I graduated and had a full-time position teaching international baccalaureate first and second year chemistry, advanced placement chemistry, and honors chemistry.</p> <p>I am so thankful for the opportunity and quality education afforded by Western Governors University. I'm also thankful for the love, support, and thoughtfulness my parents have poured into my life all of these years. For my husband, his encouragement and help. From my daughters as they took on more chores and walked in patience. My in-laws, many home cooked meals [Laughter]. My kids were thankful for that too. And for my mentor [Inaudible].</p> <p>It was in the heart of a child the love for chemistry was birthed in my life. It is in the heart of a woman, wife, mother, daughter, and now, teacher that I seek to share my passion for chemistry with the next generation of children. Education is a precious gift. It is an honor to be but a facet in the overall educational experience moving from the one being educated to the one educating.</p> <p>Whatever is your story, whatever brought you here today, know that you have succeeded in accomplishing an outstanding worthy achievement. Again, to the graduating class of 2011 at Western Governors University, many congratulations. And many blessings to each of you as you pursue your future endeavors. God bless you. Thank you.</p> <p>[Applause]</p>
Western Governors University
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Original Format: 
Commencement Video
Digital Format: 
MP4 (Moving Picture Experts Group)