My Name Is ... Stephanie Mills

Mother of three named teacher of the year by PeaceJam

Posted 12/11/17

About me My dad was a naval officer in the military and we traveled. I say I'm from Virginia because we ended up there when I was in high school and I went to the University of Virginia, where I …

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My Name Is ... Stephanie Mills

Mother of three named teacher of the year by PeaceJam

Posted

About me

My dad was a naval officer in the military and we traveled. I say I'm from Virginia because we ended up there when I was in high school and I went to the University of Virginia, where I received a degree in science and a masters in education. Then I went to the Peace Corps for two years in West Africa.

I came back and worked in Fairfax County, Virginia. I got married, had children and was a mom for 17 years. We moved to Highlands Ranch in 2002 and in 2005, we moved to Germany for a few years. We came back and I needed something to do, so I applied for a job here in Douglas County. I was hired by ThunderRidge part-time and eight years ago, I went on full time. I teach earth and environmental science to ninth-graders, AP environmental science and IB environmental science. I also lead the school's PeaceJam club.

I have three children: a 25-year-old son, a 22-year-old daughter and a 19-year-old son.

Solving problems in PeaceJam

What's really great is not only working with Nobel Peace Laureates, but PeaceJam has a whole service-learning curriculum. They want you to learn and get to the root of a problem and solve it from the bottom up.

My students were noticing racial profiling, slurs and bullying of Asian students, so they organized a forum where they are bringing in people to talk about stereotypes of Asians to teach people to be more sensitive to that.

That is one thing they have done this year to educate people so they understand the problem, so they can change the behavior. We want to help kids understand so they don't behave in these negative ways.

I want to inspire the students to see that they can make a difference even if it is in their own little area of the world.

My time in the Peace Corps

I learned more in the two years I was in the Peace Corps than I did all four years of college. When you take yourself out of your own culture, you have to rethink who you are. Ghana helped me really figure out who I was.

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Martin G.

Someone students can look up to.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017