Where were you born? Where did you grow up?
Lansing, Michigan. I grew up here and there; mostly in Delaware, Ohio.

What brought you to this area? Or kept you here?
We had been living in Japan when our first child, Molly, was born in 2004. At that point, we decided we should try to move back to Ohio so she could be closer to her grandparents. Because it tends to be easier to find openings in my field (writing, TESOL, ESOL), we decided we’d move when my husband, Luke Sheets, found a tenure-line position in Ohio.  He was offered a position teaching ceramics at ONU in 2005, and I soon found a position at BGSU, so we moved back.

What is your occupation?
After spending five years at BGSU as the ESOL Program Director, a position opened up at Bluffton for someone to teach writing and TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages). It was impossible to resist, so I applied and left my position at BGSU when Bluffton hired me. Now I teach a wide variety of courses including developmental writing and first year composition as well as all of the courses for our TESOL major, minor, and teaching endorsement (linguistics, grammar, methods, sociolinguistics, theories, etc.).

Why do you love what you do?
Oh, so many reasons! I love helping students to discover their inner writers and to learn to write in their own authentic voices about the things they care most about. I love working with people from all over the world and helping them connect and succeed using English. I love working with future teachers and helping prepare them to serve the many different learners in our communities with compassion and enthusiasm.

What is your favorite thing about this community?
 I love my neighbors and the friendly, small-town atmosphere. I enjoy the performing and visual arts events at ONU.  I am also a tremendous fan of El Campo and the Ada Theatre!

What are you involved in within the community?
My work, as you can imagine, takes a lot of my time, but also affords me the chance to serve our area. I work quite a lot with many of the local schools doing professional development for teachers and administrators and placing my students as tutors or for their teaching practicum assignments. I am also part of the Ohio Department of Education’s English Learner Advisory Committee.

What are some of your hobbies?
I love to travel. I have led student groups to Botswana five times in the past ten years and our entire family spent a semester in Guatemala in 2016. With Luke’s opportunities with art, we’ve also spent a summer in Denmark and other parts of Europe and returned to Guatemala briefly last summer for his preparation for a class at ONU this semester which includes travel abroad as well. I also love learning new languages, meeting people from all over, and cooking. I also love my big dogs!