Nick is much more than a special education teacher. He’s a confidant, a safe haven, a trusted friend and a spark of light for kids with some of the most challenging special needs. Nick has explored where his career could take him and he’s confident MyPath is exactly where he belongs.
In 2009, Nick was finishing his student teaching and additional licensing. He stopped into Genesee Lake School — a MyPath company — to see if they could use any substitute teachers. To his surprise, a full-time teaching position was available. That same day, Nick was interviewing for the teaching position. And within days, he accepted their offer.
As an early childhood special education teacher, Nick found that his love for making music could be incorporated into the classroom. From creating a soothing environment for children to inviting other classes to sit around and be part of a fun jam session, Nick and his students at Genesee Lake School were thriving.
After four years at MyPath and starting a family, Nick decided to see what other career options were out there for him. He explored teaching in public schools and even tried side jobs of every kind. But the environments and support he wanted for his students and himself wasn’t the same. His instincts were calling him back to MyPath — the place where he had fallen in love with his career seven years earlier.
“What brought me back and keeps me here are the amazing people.”
In 2016, Nick walked the halls of Genesee Lake School, once again, with the Education Director. He was met with hugs from old colleagues and friends who were eager to know if he was coming back. Nick was thrilled to be welcomed back with open arms.
“There’s a lot of fulfilment here and it comes in many different forms,” says Nick. “I find myself doing a lot of laughing and just have fun with the students and staff.”
Because the students at Genesee Lake School have diverse backgrounds and, sometimes, difficult trauma, Nick’s first goal is to have fun. He says that when students feel safe, enjoy class and want to come back day after day, the real breakthroughs can happen.
While the work isn’t always easy and it can get emotional, Nick’s passion for his students and colleagues overrides the tough moments. “We all have each other’s’ backs,” he says. “We all have a unique connection and a solid team mentality that makes everything work so well.”