Adjunct Program Faculty
“When I was a middle school classroom teacher, I got to know my students well. I cared about them– their academic performance, growth as social beings, hobbies outside of the classroom, their family life. Each day could bring laughter, challenge, and unexpected insight. Additionally, I enjoyed working with the adults in the building. My colleagues and I couldn’t stop talking about teaching—in the hallways, lunch, on runs after school. So when I began work at UVEI, I knew I’d enjoy working with adults, but I wasn’t expecting to feel the same level of fondness for adult learners as I felt for my students. They couldn’t possibly be as much fun, as intriguing, as quirky as adolescents, right?
I was wrong.
I feel passionately that my job is to make people the best learners, the best educators, they can be. I have seen amazing growth in teacher interns over the course of a year that fuels this passion. People always ask me if I miss the classroom. Although I’m still in the ‘classroom,’ I know what they mean: Don’t you miss working with kids? Yes. But also, no. I love working with people. I love working with learners of any age. My students still bring me laughter, challenge and unexpected insight every day.”
Kristen Downey, MEd, is the former Director of Teacher Education Programs at UVEI where she currently serves as an adjunct faculty member in the Teacher, School Leadership, and Masters of Education Programs. She is the president of the New Hampshire Institutions of Higher Education (IHE) Network.
She is both a former and current middle and high school school language arts teacher in the Upper Valley. After graduating from Colby College with a major in English and Creative Writing, she entered UVEI’s Class of 2003 (known then as UVTI). She earned a masters degree through Plymouth State University where her action research focused on approaches to student discipline.
You can follow her on Twitter @UVEIDowney
Kristen’s interest in deeper learning for both students and educators drives the design and implementation of inquiries such as Instructional Coaching and Mentoring, Lesson Study, Project Based Learning, Argument Writing, Differentiated Instruction and the Brain, and Formative Assessment.